An increasing number of companies are implementing bring your own device (BYOD) policies to accommodate employees who wish to use technology they’re comfortable with. While this has a great number of benefits for most employees, it does raise a number of questions for the savvy professional. What devices should one use? How should those devices be used outside of the workplace? What about information security? It isn’t as simple as taking an old laptop and setting it down on your desk. Here are a few things you should consider when planning out how to handle a bring your own device workplace:
Not all devices are created equal
When you want to advance in the workplace and do the best job you can possibly do, you want to make sure that you have the technology and tools that are bested suited for the job. You will not want to use a cheap laptop that takes ten minutes to complete and two-minute task. Say, for example, that you want to look through a list of applicants quickly, it’s important to be able to switch tabs seamlessly.
Some devices cannot perform the most basic of tasks. This can lead to incompatibility between team members and an overall slowdown of productivity. When this happens to recruiting offices or teams that are heavily reliant upon sharing and communication, this can be disastrous. Make sure that you are using the best computer you can get while maintaining synergy with the rest of your team. Be forthcoming if you think that something about your workplace’s policy is a hindrance.
You should use different devices for work and your private life
Just because something is your own device doesn’t mean that you should use the same device for everything. If at all possible, you should make every effort to separate your work and personal information. It’s far too easy for something to slip and an embarrassing or regrettable bit of information to get leaked. Mixing everything up also creates an increased likelihood that there will be lost files, slowing down progress.
Investing in a specific work device should be a major priority for you if you don’t already have one. If applicable, this could go for your smartphone as well as your laptop. This way you won’t have to worry nearly as much and be able to keep both machines working at peak performance. Since you have the opportunity, look for the device that will specifically fill your workplace needs instead of general computing needs. This way, you’ll be able to make a cost-effective purchase.
You will be bringing it outside the office
Most professionals will not be staying inside the office to do all of their work. How many times have you checked your work email while out on a ride? Not all interviews (formal or informal) are conducted outside of the office, and this can be risky for the unprepared.
This is another reason for the importance of cybersecurity. Your device not only contains some of your own personal data but valuable company information and records. You don’t want to be responsible for a data breach at your place of work because of a hacker with a sniffer program (and they’re quite common). In this case, you’ll want to be able to protect yourself with a Virtual Private Network, whether it’s a well-reviewed consumer option or one your workplace sets up, to encrypt your traffic.
Are there any guidelines?
Many workplaces have their own guidelines when it comes to devices allowed for work use. The might be required to be running a certain operating system or be able to handle certain programs, for instance. Check to see what other people are using or whether there are any specific guidelines your managers can point you toward. You don’t want to make a time-wasting or costly mistake early on, and people are almost certainly willing to help you.
The BYOD shift will, of course, adjust itself to new trends in technology and workplace strategies. Just make sure that you’re up to date, and there is positively nothing to worry about. Is there anything else you’d like to say about BYOD workplaces? Are there any other tips or considerations you’d like to share? If so, please leave a comment below and tell us what you think.
About the Author: Cassie is a security and technology blogger for SecureThoughts. She hopes the above information lets you make the right decision in the workplace.