By: Cara Reedy for CNN
Company phones are supposed to be a convenience for the employee and the employer.
They’re electronic leashes that bind people to their jobs no matter how hard or far they try to run — but they’re free smartphones that can save people thousands of dollars a year in wireless bills.
So, you would think that people wouldn’t care that much about the type of company phone they are issued. You would be wrong.
In my experience as an office administrator, I’ve found that people care a little too much.
They worry about the color and the generation. Will they get the one with all the latest features? Can they upgrade early because the new model is cooler and fancier? Since the company is paying, cost is no object.
And yet, for all their concern that their phones be the latest and greatest, company employees treat their smartphones like burner phones.
They lose and break them with abandon like a toddler with toy.
The excuses for the losses are never-ending and always more ridiculous than the one before. (All the following facts are true, but I’ve taken some poetic license to protect the innocent).
The list of phone “accidents” is long but here are some of my favorites:
I dropped it in the pool. My cat knocked it in the toilet. (Why was your phone on your toilet?) I drove over it. It dropped it in the ocean while I was fishing. I ran it through the dishwasher.
Some blame broken phones on their children.
Employee: I lost it in my house somewhere.
Me: When did you last see it?
Employee: When my kid was playing Minecraft.
Me: Can you look for it?
Employee: Can’t I just get a new one?
Me: No, but I can give you an old loaner.
Two weeks later…
Employee: My other kid found my phone.
Me: Where was it?
Employee: The toy box. Can I still get a new one?
There are some adults who refuse to listen to reason.
Employee: My phone doesn’t work in my neighborhood.
Me: I know, I told you that provider wouldn’t work for you when you ordered it.
Employee: But my husband has this provider too.
Me: Does his phone work?
The IT department and I have become best friends. I talk to them more than I speak to my family.
Every time I called IT, they answer, “Who lost a phone this time?”
Though some of my co-workers are more than 10 years older than I am, I end up being the equivalent of a parent rendering discipline to errant children.
Their punishment: an outdated phone from the lost and found pile.
Buying a new phone out of contract is costly, even for a big company.
So excuse me if I think that company phones are a drain on productivity.
I have lost weeks of my life dealing with lost and broken company phones. It’s time I will never get back. I hate company phones.
With that said, I’m excited for CNN to upgrade me to the new Samsung Galaxy S6. My Galaxy S4 has a cracked screen.