By Cristina Moss
In a perfect world, employees would never need to learn a new tech format. Everyone is happy, and productivity is always at its highest in this utopian workplace. Of course, this is the same world where children’s rooms are always clean, reports are always on time and unicorns fly on rainbows. In the real business world, contracts are lost, employees are laid-off and everyone is in a rage by Wednesday. It is here that the BYOD policy can become a real headache for an employer.
Hope For The Best And Plan For The Worst
According to HR firm Lee Hecht Harrison, about 1/3 of companies do not have a written severance policy. Not having a policy written can leave a company at a disadvantage when things get heated. Do not wait for all hell to break loose to create your severance policies. Create a BYOD policy that specifically addresses separation events. Make it clear that using your own device for company tasks negates any assumption of privacy.
Know Your Rules
Some policies are out of the employer’s hands. Things like HIPAA and FIRPA are federal mandates that regulate the sharing of information. An employee, whether active or terminated, is bound by these laws. Yet 25 percent of IT professionals are not certain whether their BYOD policies comply with federal regulations, according to CIO. Create separation policies that remind the employee of these rules. If you are under a municipal guideline, cite it in the policy. This can go side by side with a non-compete, non-disclosure policy. This way, even if the employee leaves with information, the company has some recourse if the information is used inappropriately.
Use Tech To Monitor Tech
If an employee is using a Blackberry under your ‘Bring Your Own Device‘ policy then your IT person needs to understand Blackberry devices inside and out. The same goes for iOs or Android products. The upside of technology is that there is other technology to keep it secure, as long as you understand how to use it. The same security measure that a company uses to keep data safe from loss can be used to lock down data in the event of employee termination. Route 1 is one example of a provider that used to be very expensive but now offers security for as little as $300 per year per employee, according to Forbes.
Let The White House Lead
A great resource comes from the U.S. government. Since they have adopted a BYOD environment in some of their departments, they have laid out sample policies for use. Their samples specifically address issues of termination, sensitive data, and privacy. Besides these key considerations, the site also gives case studies and sample policies that can be trimmed for use by medium sized companies or small entrepreneurial businesses.