How do you plant to support your staff’s desire (need) to use personal apps and devices, while allowing them to be productive in a secure environment that protects valuable business data?

We’ve been warning our clients to get their BYOD policies in order because, whether you allow it or not, employees will most likely use their own devices for work. Here are few pointers for creating a secure and productive mobile environment.

1. Be proactive, rather than reactive
Create a policy that includes what mobile devices are permitted and details who will pay for the devices and the associated data plans. This could involve the company sharing the expense, paying a percentage of the expense or offering some kind of discount on devices. Also consider issues like compliance, security, forbidden applications, network access and privacy.

2. Keep track of all devices
This should go without saying: All mobile devices need to be incorporated into your mobile initiative. Keep a meticulous spreadsheet of device types and users.

3. Keep it simple
Encourage compliance by providing an efficient way for employees to enroll their devices. You also need to authenticate employees with a basic authentication process such as a one-time passcode or use existing corporate directories such as Active Directory.

4. Configure devices over the air
Make it easy for employees to configure their devices without adding more tasks to your already-time-strapped IT staff.

5. Provide self service
A robust self-service platform lets users perform PIN and password resets, geo-locate a lost device and remotely wipe a lost device. A self-service portal can also help employees understand why they may be out of compliance.

6. Determine the nature of data
Make it clear what data you can and cannot collect from employees’ mobile devices.

7. Isolate personal data from private data
Corporate apps, documents, and other materials must be protected if the employee decides to leave the organization; but personal email, apps, and photos should be untouched.

8. Use automatic monitoring
Devices should be continuously monitored for certain scenarios, and automated policies should be in place that address jailbreaking, wiping and automatic upgrades.

9. Manage data usage
Help employees manage their data use in order to avoid excessive charges. Nobody like surprises on their mobile device bills.

10. Consider the ROI
Examine the long-term costs and cost-savings of BYOD for your organization.

BYOD affords employees the freedom to work on their own devices while relieving IT of significant financial and management burdens, but BYOD cannot be successful at streamlining management and cost savings without a well-written policy and a robust management platform.

Contact ACE IT Solutions for help developing a BYOD policy and putting into place a management platform to help your BYOD policy succeed.

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