HR Leader logo
Stay connected.   Subscribe  to our newsletter

Allowing employees to use their own devices at work could be a smart move

By Jack Campbell | |5 minute read

A recent survey has revealed that the majority of employees prefer to use their own devices at work. However, most employers don’t allow this.

This could be the wrong choice for workplaces, as allowing more freedom in a role can assist with the attraction and retention of employees.

According to the 2023 Market Scan Survey by ThingsAt, 64 per cent of Aussie workers want to use their personal laptop at work, yet just 14 per cent have an employer that will allow them to do so.


The conductors of the survey, 3arc believes allowing employees to bring their own device to work brings with it positive feelings. “We know that Australian workers want to have some sense of control of where and how they work,” said 3arc managing director Matt Bond.

“Choice and input into their primary work tools is part of this, but only 14 per cent of laptop users actually have a say in what work-supplied laptop they receive, and yet two in three respondents (64 per cent) would prefer choice in some format, i.e. either bring your own device (BYOD) or selection from a list of device options supplied by their employer.”

Giving employees more autonomy over the way they work only improves upon flexibility, and flexibility is a crucial consideration for many employees.

According to a Randstad report, 83.2 per cent of Australian workers consider flexibility to be important.

ThingsAt chief executive Ruy Franco commented: “We know employees want flexibility in terms of how and where they work. This research suggests that it is now extending to workplace tools. Employees want a higher level of empowerment in terms of the way they work and the tools they use.”

Understanding how employees want to work and extending this to their equipment can be a game changer for boosting flexibility in the workplace.

“This presents a remarkable opportunity for employers to stand out from the pack and attract quality staff. Putting the function of laptop choice into employee hands is a simple but powerful way to better attract and retain great people,” said Mr Franco.

This means revamping the office space to give employees a comfortable working environment could be extremely beneficial to attraction and retention.

Mr Bond continued: “The research also indicated high rates of external monitor use with laptops. Multiple monitors are the norm, with three in four people (77 per cent) regularly using additional monitors with their laptops.”

“We found that for laptop users, the most important factors for users were battery life and performance/processing speed – they want a device that is suitable to their specific role, not a one-size-fits-all approach.”

This means companies should ensure that their equipment is up to standard. Giving workers the tools to perform better can help drive better performance.

“People want to use external monitors with their laptop; employers need to give consideration to the office environment to ensure it’s easy to plug in and get started. This extends to the home office environment where workers should be able to replicate what happens in the office with ease,” explained Mr Franco.

“Companies that outsource device life cycle management can bring laptop choice to the masses and achieve around 30 per cent savings in total end-user computing cost.”

Jack Campbell

Jack Campbell

Jack is the editor at HR Leader.