Have your heard of BYOD? Its CIO / CTO speak, standing for Bring Your Own Device, meaning let enterprise employees use their own hardware for business tasks. The most popular trend in BYOD is letting employees use their own smartphone or tablet for business use. Typically this means email, accessing the intranet and accessing enterprise file servers.

There are various security techniques that let even highly regulated financial institutes safely engage with with a BYOD scheme. But why, its not free, the enterprise has to invest in security infrastructure to set this up. The ROI argument made by vendors such as Cisco cover a range of enterprise factors, mostly focused around overall reduced costs per staff member, by as much as 25%. But cost saving is not the only ROI in the BYOD pitch, it includes productivity boosts, increased job satisfaction and increased employee retention

Research from Aberdeen Grop found that 61% of companies that embrace BYOD experience higher employee satisfaction. Cisco go as far as placing a specific annual value of $300 per headcount due to employee retention. Cisco highlight that 40% of employees want an any device work anywhere style.

As Gen Y hires increase do they expect to BYOD in place? Will employee retention through BYOD become a bigger factor? Any device, really I doubt that is really wanted, do employees want to use their own laptops? But I do believe that forcing employees to carry two mobile phones is a pain and people would prefer to simply use their own. The choice of mobile is quite personally, boarding on religious. Some of the mobile BYOD technology I saw demonstrated at GigaOM Mobilize, specifically on Android, effectively runs two phones on one device. This enables work calls to be billed to work and the employee can switch off work.

I have read a lot of material about the suggestion of BYOD increasing employee retention. Even though I am a mobile fan boy, I just do not buy it!

I have never met anyone who said "Damn my firm, they force me to use this mobile, I am quitting". It just is not a factor that is up there with management style, travel, lack of training, task variety, career potential and pay.

One of our Mobile In Action friends, Elaina Farnsworth CEO of Mobile Comply has had hands on experience of deploying BYOD strategies, I shall be inviting her back to do a video interview on this topic. Her challenge - convince me that mobile can impact retention.

What are your thoughts, please comment and let me know!

Here is a link to the Cisco study.

AuthorDave Martin