Business-owned devices, what to consider

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02 Jun 2023

Business-owned devices–what to consider

The ability to adapt to the new remote working world has been essential for all businesses. This forced digital fast-forward has catapulted the need for more devices, something many businesses hadn’t considered pre-pandemic.

Take a quick scan of your workspace right now and there are bound to be at least two devices within easy reach. Having a mobile phone, laptop, or tablet for personal use is common, but if you ask your employees to use their personal devices for work, you may find there’s some resistance. Some may not be happy about using their personal devices for work, and others will expect compensation for data use, wear and tear and repairs. That’s why many employers go with business-owned devices.

No matter where you work or what you do, being given a device at work is almost always seen as a good thing. As an employer, investing in business-owned devices can be an efficient and convenient way to keep your business connected, but there’s certainly a lot to consider.

When deciding to supply your team with a device, you’ll always need to look at what makes the most sense for your business’s policies and finances.

The Benefits of Using Business-Owned Devices

Employee Productivity

Giving devices such as mobile phones or laptops to your team can help to create a happy and productive workforce. Employee productivity can flourish thanks to more flexibility, the ability to work from anywhere, and the reassurance that they have all the tools they need to do their job well. Any business-owned device should be a benefit of the role, and employers need to set clear policies for their proper use and care. For example, an acceptable use policy clearly states what these devices can and cannot be used for.

Data Privacy

With a business-owned device, your employees can work from anywhere, giving them flexibility and freedom. That’s a really good thing! But it also opens a world of potential issues. If they connect to an unsecured network in a coffee shop or airport, your device could be at risk. But with a business-owned device, you can have security software pre-installed on devices such as firewalls and VPNs to protect your company’s private data.


Global cyberattacks increased by 38% in 2022, compared to 2021. The implications of a data breach can be devastating, so knowing you’ve done what you need to do as a company to follow security protocols is key. A business-owned device can come pre-installed with all the necessary computer security software to keep your company information as safe as possible. The same can’t be said for personal devices. Not all your employees are IT professionals. A business-owned device allows you to manage and quickly install updates, fix software issues, and respond to security protocols automatically. And should a device get lost or stolen, you can make sure that you have effective software installed, so you can remotely control that device and stop anything sensitive getting into the wrong hands.

What Can You Afford?

The responsibility of financing devices is a big one. Before you get started, you need to figure out which devices you need and how many to see how that aligns with your budget. Reimbursing employees for anything from data costs to replacements and repairs can be a strain on resources when you can’t plan for them. Businesses must also consider the cost of a cyberattack, both financially and in terms of reputation. Globally, the cost of cybercrime is predicted to reach over $10 trillion by 2025. It’s worth noting that business insurance policies don’t include cyber crime cover. You’ll need a completely separate policy to protect your business from cyber threats[2] like hacking, phishing and data breaches.

Try chatting with current employees to gain feedback about which business-owned devices would be the most beneficial. If you’re looking for advice, they’re the ones at the forefront of your business, and they’ll be able to give you some great insights into the requirements of your workforce.

Role-based Selections

Not all businesses can afford to issue devices to every employee, and that’s OK. As a workaround, some will opt to distribute devices depending on the role requirements. Not every employee needs a business-owned mobile phone or laptop. Those that are office based won’t need a mobile phone, but those that work remotely might. Role-based selections ensure that you’re only paying for the devices you need, which helps keep your costs down.

Employees Choose Their Own

Another route that companies can go down is CYOD (choose your own device). It enables employees to choose their own devices from a selection pre-approved by the business. This method of device selection can also evolve and change as the role develops, or when the employee becomes more aware of what they need day to day. It can be harder to budget for as you’re never 100% sure what you’ll need to add to your plan, but with the right management, it can work for some businesses.

Buying vs. renting

Deciding if buying or renting is best for your business depends on your priorities, whether that’s high data, network coverage or keeping costs down. Buying the devices means you’ll have full ownership of the assets but higher upfront costs. Longevity comes into play here too. If you want to upgrade your device fleet every couple of years, renting may be the better option.

For more advice and information on how you can help your team work better from anywhere, read on here.

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