Hand your employees a hotspot

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Show your staff that you recognize their investment in their smart devices and are willing to meet them halfway.

If you employ millennials, it is a near certainty that they are using their personal smart devices to conduct business. It is likely the case with most generations, but our youngest professionals use seemingly every
shortcut and tool available to do what needs to be done. As a liabilityminded entrepreneur, chances are this situation concerns you. But without the resources to hand out company devices (a practice with an entirely
different set of headaches), there are few roadblocks you can erect to halt it. The best practice is to side-step it with portable hotspots.

People often do stupid things to establish a data signal. Besides hoisting devices into the sky, we routinely walk into windows, crash our cars, and, of course, drop and break our devices all in the name of connection. Investing in a handful of wireless hotspots immediately eliminates this foolishness, but it is so much more than that.

For a few hundred dollars in an initial investment for the device — plus an ongoing cellular plan — wireless hotspots allow your employees to work anywhere, conduct business without running up data charges on their personal plans, and eliminate the potential of employees damaging or losing expensive company smart devices.

This doesn’t address the concern of company business being conducted on personal devices, but that hurdle has been cleared with the standard practice of employees signing over rights for employers to remote wipe personal devices in case of physical loss or data breach. These rights waivers can be draconian, but workers have more or less acquiesced to the specter of privacy loss in the name of convenience. In truth, it is a way for managers to make employees acknowledge the seriousness of using a personal device.

The final reason to pick up a couple wireless hotspots is that it is a selling point to employees. While they may be willing to use their personal devices, the data costs that come with this can be greatly irritating. A separate business smartphone could solve that problem, but carrying two phones is almost worse. These business-card-sized hotspotswill show your staff that you recognize their investment and are at least willing to meet them halfway. ♦

Patrick Boberg is a central Iowa creative media specialist. Follow him on Twitter @PatBoBomb.

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