BYOD, CYOD or COPE: Which Enterprise Mobility Strategy Suits Your Business Best?

By Enterprise Security Magazine | Friday, September 06, 2019

There are a lot of arguments going on about BYOD, CYOD, and COPE. Which one to choose? Which mobility strategy will lead to more productivity and more employee satisfaction? 

FREMONT, CA: As people are becoming more addicted to their mobile phones with each passing day, it has become essential for companies to take care of their employees' desires and their comfort zones to boost their productivity. Then emerged these three schools of thought to deal with the spectrum of employees' freedom and also aligning them with the enterprise needs, business policies, budgets, culture, and other considerations. 

1. BYOD (Bring your own device): The Key to Employee Satisfaction

BYOD is well known and the most popular approach adopted by businesses. In this approach, the employees have complete freedom to choose and support the device that they wish to use at the workplace. This method is mostly adopted by small businesses and companies that deal with less sensitive information. 

Enterprises especially mid-sized, are using BYOD approach to cut down their costs and enhance their productivity. Field reps make use of their own smartphones and are happier to use it than the one issued by the company. However, there is the absence of a learning curve here. The employees can upgrade their phones to get cutting-edge technology, which indirectly benefits the company. 

BYOD also assists organizations to appear more competitive in the market in terms of potential employees. According to a report, 35% of workers admit that the enterprise's BYOD policy influences their decision to accept or decline the job offer.

CYOD (Choose your own device): Authority comes at a Cost

CYOD is a fused approach adopted by companies, where they offer their employees with a limited array of devices to choose from and that the enterprise has approved for reliability, durability, and security. This gives some extent of freedom to the employees but also allows the companies to have more control over them. The devices are paid for and kept by the employees, or the organization will provide employees with a renewable hardware stipend, and they can own them till their termination or resignation.

Then comes the cost factor. In order to remain up-to-date, it is essential to keep the devices upgraded as well, which becomes difficult as manufacturers like Apple keep rolling out new products every year.

COPE (Company-Issued, Personally-Enabled): Uniformity at the Cost of Privacy

This is the most costly but the safest option for organizations. It is the closest model to the traditional business model of COBO (Corporate Owned, Personally Enabled). It is more likely to be used by large enterprises as it enhances control over the devices in many ways. Every employee is given the devices of the same model, which they can use for their personal work as well. However, ultimately, it is the company which will decide what amount of freedom and choice should be given to employees. 

The issue with COPE is that it enables the IT to look into the personal information of the workers, which might be considered a breach of privacy. However, the benefit of COPE over BYOD and CYOD is the lower security concerns as organizations using this approach exercise more authority and control over all the devices. This approach is mostly opted by financial institutions and healthcare sectors.

The definitions and characteristics of each of these differ slightly. Hence, enterprises need to be careful about which strategy will best suit their management before opting for any of this approach.

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