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Re: Use of personal mobile phones on company time


 Do organisations have a policy on this?  Is it strictly enforced? If no rule exists how is the use pf personal mobile managed?

Thanks in advance

Andrew Miller

7 Responses

  1. Two policies

    First, we have a policy on using their mobile device only for business purposes.  IT monitors this through tracking software and phone usage data.  It also blocks sites that are normally accessed for personal use (Gmail, Facebook, etc.).

    Second, there is a policy specifically addressing texting while driving, either while using a company vehicle or personal vehicle for business use.  Can’t give you information on enforcement — I guess it’s enforced when somebody gets into an accident driving a company vehicle and the police write them up for texting while driving!

  2. Total ban

    Hi Andrew

    I worked for a company that operated a total ban on using personal mobiles. It was a company that was dealing with clients’ confidential personal and financial information. The ban was because of the proliferation of camera phones to stop employees photographing documents and/or computer screens. The employees concerned were not issued with company mobiles. The same was the case for internet usage. Their work computers could not access the internet but there were 2 or 3 computers in the cafeteria area that they could use during breaktimes.

    As with anything else, if there is not a policy it is very difficult to take any action against employees. It doesn’t have to be complicated; a single sentence may suffice e.g. the use of personal mobiles during working hours should be limited to emergencies only (or a similar statement for personal use of company mobiles.)


  3. Personal Phone Usage

    Sounds like the same firm I worked for, only there was a total ban including emergencies. Having your personal phone out in the workplace was a sacking offence, strictly enforced. I did also work for  a  company who provided work mobiles but charged a flat fee of £10 per month if the employee wished to use the phone for personal use, whioch was monitored to ensure that the personal use was not excessive.– Terry George MCIPD Training Consultant

  4. if the question refers to the company paying for people’s person

    we had a very simple policy… could activate line 2 on your company phone registered to you as an individual at your home address… using line 2 an employee could make as many personal phone calls to whoever they wanted because they were paying for it….the company wasn’t at all bothered about the time issue… were paid to acheive a target and if you did so the company wasn’t interested in clock watching.

    We did have a policy on use of mobiles in the car and a hands free was issued to every mobile user to support that policy.

    Rus Slater

  5. Personal mobile phone use


    I wonder if we are getting too hung up about this being use of a mobile phone. I have read from your posting that people are talking to friends and family (or their bookie!) on their own phone, rather than using a work phone? In which case surely the policy should be the same as anyone who is found doing a crossword, filing their nails or writing a personal letter? They are time wasting and not being productive.

    Naturally, the occasional call to make a doctor’s appointment or arrange a plumber to call would be acceptable if brief and necessary but any more than that is surely not permissible. They should do most stuff like this in their lunch hour anyway.

    Hope these thoughts help.


  6. Depends on the company

    Reading some of the replies here surprised me at first, they appeared draconian but having thought about the different organizations I have worked with i can absolutely see why some of these policies would be required.

    In my work place we have a simple policy that’s designed to prevent abuse of the priviledge of having a company paid mobile phone. It’s considered part of the employment package. As for personal phones we also have a policy designed to protect the employee in the event that the employee is required to use their personal phone for work purposes.

    Like Rus suggests as employees we have objectives and targets, providing we are performing against that criteria there is no restriction on using my personal phone during the time I am in the office.

    We have discussed adding policy around the use of phones in meetings and training sessions but currently this exists as signs stuck to the walls of the training and meeting rooms.

    I once worked in an area of sensitive electronic equipment and as a result mobile phones were banned simply because they affected the measuring equipment in use.

    So I think it depends entirely on the workplace and culture.

  7. Draconian?

    Not sure it is particularly draconian to expect staff to be focusing on their work, not on chatting to or texting their mates. I have been in offices where people have their mobiles or smart phones on their desk beside them and are constantly checking for messages etc. This can’t be good for productivity and doesn’t look good to visitors or customers either. I once waited at a hotel reception desk, needing to check in, whilst the receptionist chatted on her mobile!

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