‘Meagre’ levels of reimbursement threaten BYOD productivity, report warns


A new survey from mobile platform and services provider Syntonic has revealed fewer than three in 10 employees are reimbursed when they use their personal smartphones for work purposes, threatening BYOD plans.

The study, the second in a two-part series on BYOD trends, polled more than 500 employees, and found some alarming statistics.

Only a quarter (24%) of employees are aware of legal requirements when it comes to reimbursement for personal smartphone usage in various US states, while 71% of employers said they were aware of the laws. Back in August 2014, a court in California ruled in the Cochran v Schwan’s Home Service, Inc. case that organisations should appropriately pay their employees if they have to make work calls – although not taking into account SMS or data – on their personal phones. Six out of 10 (61%) say they have at least ‘moderate’ concern with the ruling.

Almost three quarters (73%) of respondents say it is ‘very’ or ‘somewhat’ important to be reimbursed for their work on personal smartphones, while more than half (57%) said reimbursement positively affects their productivity.

In total, while 43% of employers say productivity is a key driver of BYOD implementation in their organisations, half of employees surveyed said they consciously conserve the amount of data they use regardless of whether they are reimbursed.

In other words, postponing data usage can lead to crucial productivity misses – and crossed wires may be the issue. Yet three in five (61%) employers say employees who are not remunerated have not asked for their money.

So what to do? “By conducting two individual surveys on each group, it’s clear that both parties agree on the need to separate work from personal use,” said Gary Greenbaum, CEO and co-founder of Syntonic in a statement. “They both need and want reimbursement policies that fairly compensate employees, and safeguard employers from overspending while ensuring compliance with new laws.”

You can read the full report here (registration required).

Update 1745 GMT: A previous version of this article said more than 900 employees were polled instead of 500. This has since been corrected.


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