The term Bring Your Own Device was first coined in 2005; however, it didn’t go into use until 2009. This is when Intel realized their employees were increasingly bringing their own devices to work and using them to connect to company data. Although, it wasn’t until 2011 that it started to gain a much larger stature within the corporate world. The BYOD trend has been linked to an uptick in employee morale, in addition to making a company more attractive to potential staff. Here are some BYOD statistics:

  • The Middle East has the highest adoption rate at 80%.
  • There is a 75% adoption rate in Brazil and Russia.
  • Developed markets have a 44% adoption rate.


Choose your own device came about as a direct result of BYOD. This is simply because some companies cannot handle managing the software, hardware and possible security breaches caused by managing multitudes of employee devices. CYOD offers employees the opportunity to choose a company-approved device. These devices are usually distributed by the company, and retrieved if the employee is fired or resigns. This gives the company’s IT department more control over security, as it may be a much more convenient option. Although, employees would usually prefer BYOD, CYOD is starting to gain traction. There are also issues with Android fragmentation, which can be resolved with a CYOD policy.

The Utility Of BYOD

BYOD offers employees freedom, which they enjoy and appreciate. As a result, they may feel happier at work, which may lead to more productive employees. Research has also found that this policy can increase employee retention. Additionally, implementing a BYOD strategy can cut costs. Devices are purchased and maintained by the employee as opposed to the company, so it offers a budgetary advantage. Furthermore, it lowers confusion that can come when employees carry one device for work and one for personal use.

The Benefits Of CYOD

As a company, you can decide which apps, information and functions are authorized. Not to mention, you can ensure that your company data will be more secure as you are not overwhelmed with various operating systems and devices having access to your network. You may not have to hire additional IT staff, as well. On top of that, you get to install virus scanners and other types of software to help manage the devices you sanction.

Issues With BYOD

The most prevalent problem amongst the BYOD debate is security. According to a Gartner survey, only 27% of U.S. companies believed their mobile policy was sufficient enough to pass an internal audit. That is quite a scary notion, especially given the uptick in global cyber attacks. Moreover, unique employee agreements need to be drafted and overseen by legal counsel, to structure the company’s rights to view information stored on their employees’ devices. That is where black and white might turn into a shade of gray. There is also the question of intellectual property, and the cost of losing it. Other problems can include:

  • Loss of devices.
  • Personal use overtaking work use (Streaming of videos and music at work).
  • Application deployment.
  • Updates and patches.
  • Ensuring C-level executives set examples by adhering to any and all policies set forth.

How CYOD Wins

Although CYOD does impose the added expense of hardware, software and maintenance; overall it is a winning policy. The employee may not have as vast a range of options, but they do have a few. Most employees will understand why CYOD makes much more sense than BYOD. There is also a boost in mobilization of applications. In fact, analysts predict that BYOD will soon no longer exist, and CYOD will eventually take its place in every business with a mobile policy. In fact, Charles Anderson, head of telecoms and mobility for IDC Asia-Pacific recently asserted, “I hate to be the bearer of bad news but one thing is that BYOD doesn’t have a great [return on investment] ROI, there isn’t one.” Also, applications can be loaded based on a user’s profile. Furthermore, geo-fencing, which is limiting access to sensitive data, can be more easily employed with a CYOD policy.

Implementing A CYOD Policy

One way to get the ball rolling is to have your employees understand that they will not be allowed to view company data on their personal device. As long as you stand firmly on this regulation; employees will begin to abide fairly quickly. If there is any sense that this policy is not set in stone, then employees will look for loopholes to returning to BYOD.

Choosing Devices

You still want to provide devices that you can manage, since employees will soon acknowledge their restricted leeway. It is also beneficial if they sought after by your employees. These are three factors you should take into consideration:

  • Manageability.
  • Enterprise readiness.
  • Security.

You want your approved devices to have the ability to work with your mobile management software. They must also be designed to work in an enterprise environment, and come with security features amenable to your company’s policies. Additionally, it does not hurt to know what devices are in demand and which aren’t. This doesn’t mean you have to cater to every whim of the market, but keeping this in mind and offering some of these types of options may keep your employees a lot happier with the transition from BYOD to CYOD. Lastly, it is essential to only offer what you can manage. While it may be tempting to come across as the “cool” company that responds to your employees’ every desire, it won’t benefit you if you end up not being able to control any of your devices or if you incur multiple security breaches.

There isn’t anything companies can do about the BYOD and CYOD trends. However, leaning towards CYOD can be more profitable for the company, especially in the long run. The upside is too significant to overlook. Furthermore, the companies that have more control over their employee-used devices and applications will also have an augmented peace of mind. While employees may be initially unhappy with the change, they will have to grow accustomed to it, and may end up changing their minds after all.

How do you feel about CYOD? Let us know in the comments section below.