Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Does Your Firm Have a Mobile Phone Policy?

Some years ago I worked at a correctional centre where mobile phones and most other electronic media were prohibited.

It worked well, but security staff would occasionally walk around the prison with scanning equipment to check whether staff was complying with instructions. Occasionally someone who had forgotten they had a mobile in their pocket or briefcase would be detected and asked to take the mobile out of the fenced, secured zone, usually to the car park.

Other places I have worked, the staff has had open slather when it comes to mobile phones and I know of people who spend a significant amount of their working hours engaged in private conversations.

In the same way that people taking frequent breaks to smoke can adversely impact on the bottom line, so can people using mobile phones. Therefore, firms need to have a mobile phone policy.

What might a mobile phone policy look like?

A mobile phone policy should include two major sections:
  1. Use of company or private mobile phones for official business
  2. Use of private mobile phones
Some firms allow employees to use their private mobiles for work use and claim reimbursement. This is not, in my opinion, a suitable approach.

Item one would include such things as:
  1. Who is entitled to a company mobile
  2. What it can and cannot be used for
  3. What to do if it is lost or stolen, and
  4. How to return it on leaving the firm or how to have it replacd
Item two should include:
  1. Phones on silent during meetings and while at work
  2. When private mobiles may and may not be used at work eg, not for internet or SMS
  3. Private phones not to be used for company purposes
  4. When private mobiles may be switched off silent if emergency private calls are expected or need to be made
Other work places may have other restrictions eg, hospitals where it is alleged mobile phones effect medical equipment.

Conclusion

Given that using mobile phones for texting, accessing Facebook and other social media channels is addictive to some people, some type policy is essential to ensure people at work spend their paid hours on official business and nor texting their friends and family.

Robin

PS: Do a search for "mobile phone policies" and you'll find quite a few examples.

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