By Michael Grodin – ETMG President
Here’s a question: When are you not connected to the Internet?
Between home, work, your smartphone and even in your car, chances are you are online at almost any given moment in the day.
Along with the mobility that cloud computing affords, it’s little wonder that the BYOD trend – as in Bring Your Own Device – has become such a big hit in the workplace. Companies save money, employees use the machines they want and nobody has to keep switching computers and devices all day long.
14 years of BYOD at ETMG
It may surprise you to know that Envision Technology Marketing Group has been on top of the BYOD trend for over a decade. In fact it was 14 years ago when ETMG instituted a Bring Your Own Computer (BYOC) policy for all employees and contractors, which allowed the company to stay technologically current without having to foot the bill for a huge IT infrastructure.
Over the years, ETMG maintained the policy while using new equipment purchases as employee rewards and incentives, allowing employees to retain title to the equipment when they left the company. Because employees are financially responsible for their own equipment, they treat their computers with greater respect, which reduces hardware abuse. They also tend to spend the money as if it was their own, and are very frugal when making purchases. And having such a policy allows the company to require that all workers – whether full- or part-time – are using the most current technology available.
The result is ETMG’s ability to scale extremely fast while maintaining lower operating costs.
Our clients want quality, speed, and price. Staying technologically current provides our workforce with the ability to execute the top quality services our clients demand. At the same time, it reduces our operating costs and allows us to keep our prices below market.
Other companies are discovering that BYOD saves money.
ETMG isn’t alone. Recently, Forrester Research found that over half of all IT employees are now using their own devices in the workplace and over three-quarters of all senior executives are doing so. The average employee spends an equivalent of $1,200 on their device, which equals money saved for organizations with BYOD/BYOC policies.
Cisco, an ETMG client, did a similar survey and found per-employee cost savings was about $2,500. Cisco noted some challenges with BYOD, however, specifically concern for data security and the ability to provide support for multiple IT platforms used by employees. Yet it also found that BYOD policies made employees more productive and happy.
What does this trend mean for marketers?
Many jobs involve teamwork, but marketing is inherently collaborative – on a daily basis, we connect with product developers, vendors, designers, salespeople, senior executives and many others. Many of us telecommute and/or work on projects during off-hours, when we are away from our offices or desks, or perhaps when Asia-Pacific markets are open. We work on laptops, bringing them everywhere we go and using them for everything from customer demos to Internet meetings. So it makes sense to us that if you are using your own device you may be working more often and more efficiently.
It’s only natural for us to keep the devices that connect us to our paychecks – whether they are laptops, tablets or smartphones – close at hand. Particularly when many companies are watching marketing dollars carefully, BYOD/BYOC policies seem to make a lot of sense. But what do you think?