The Wireless Miser's Blog

BYOP -The best of BYOD and Corporate-Owned Program

BYOD (Bring-Your-Own-Device) has become a buzz word.

Yet, many companies are reluctant to venture into this area for various reasons. But with their employees constantly demanding it, companies often have no choice but to comply.

Employees want BYOD because companies do not want to pay for expensive smart phones. With BYOD, employees can purchase whatever phone models they want, and ask their companies to provide them access to corporate data and emails.

On the other hand, there are many reasons companies do not want BYOD – no control over employee-owned phones, can’t impose policies such as talking-while-driving for business, reimbursement on services cost more than corporate-owned accounts, employees still demand support even though corporate does not have access to employee-owned accounts, and hidden cost in stipend-reimbursement.

True, there are mobile device management (MDM) software employers can put onto the devices to prevent data breach, but there isn’t a lot it can do to address the other concerns companies often have.

Enter BYOP (Bring Your Own Phone). BYOP is a program where the employee pays for the device (hardware) while the service is owned by the company. This means, the employer owns the phone number, pays for the monthly services, and have complete control over the service and how the device can be used during business hours. The employee owns the hardware device so when s/he leaves the company, s/he can take the device.

There are several ways to accomplish this:

Employee purchases the phone at retail cost and then brings it back to the employer to activate service. In the US, this can be more costly because the carriers often subsidize part of the cost of the device when purchasing with a service contract. By not having a service contract, the employee will not get the carrier subsidy.

Employer purchases the phone and the service contract, and then deduct the device cost from employee’ paycheck. With the right reports and cooperation from the accounting department, this can be done very simply.

The carrier charges the employee for cost of equipment (subsidized) and activates the service contract under employer’s account. This can be done if the carrier is willing to work with you to coordinate the activation. This is the desired choice if the carrier will work with you.

With BYOP, both the companies and employees get what they want, and companies do not have to give up the control they have been enjoying under the traditional wireless program. Companies can even go one step further and allow employees to transfer their own numbers by assuming the responsibility of the employees’ service. When the employees leave, they can then transfer the liability back to the employees.