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3 Awkward Situations with Mobile Devices in the Workplace

Everyone has endured that embarrassing moment of sending the wrong text message to someone, perhaps a flirty statement that was accidentally sent to your mother. Mobile devices are a great advancement that have made it easier than ever for people to stay connected, but they do create some ground for potentially awkward situations. In an article for TechRepublic, Mary Shacklett elaborates on some situations that may become complicated.


Utilizing mobile devices may seem harmless, but they can greatly complicate and stress work relationships. Shacklett stresses the necessity for setting ground rules so the lines are never blurred. There are three potentially awkward situations that mobile devices can foster in the workplace:

  1. Personal messages
  2. Staying connected while on vacation
  3. Bring your own device

It is quite common for employees to want and even need to stay connected with the people in their personal life. Perhaps a husband is waiting for the word that his wife is giving birth, or maybe someone from school is trying to reach a parent because their child needs to go home sick. These are all common occurrences, but when an employee is on company property and using a company device, there is often very little privacy. HR departments should be clear up front with employees what the privacy policy is.

Particularly in IT, it is common and kind of expected that employees stay connected to their work while on vacation. Managers may want to ask them about a situation, and employees often do not want to get behind on their work. While all of this is legal, it is not necessarily healthy for employees to constantly be connected to work. People need time away to take a break and enjoy life so they do not burn out.

Employees tend to believe that when a company has a bring-your-own-device policy that they are entitled to their privacy. The law dictates that companies have the right to monitor communications on personal devices, as long as the company is clear to the employee about the policy. HR departments must be explicit with their employees about what the policy is.

You can read the original article here:

About Danielle Koehler

Danielle is a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success. She has degrees in English and human resource management from Shippensburg University.

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