Wednesday, October 19, 2011

How would you handle this?

Got an interesting question from a reader earlier today, and we thought you might be able to provide some feedback. First a little background.

The company has been using Sprint/Nextel for about 10 years. Most of the units are direct connect and a small number of them have phone service. The company also uses the Nextel GPS in the units to track technicians. The question is primarily one of cost. Should the company continue with the Sprint/Nextel approach or use another method.

1. Since all of the employees have their own phones, should the company pay for the Sprint/Nextel service?
2. What are your thoughts on using the GPS (Commettracker) on the phones versus installing GPS on the vehicles themselves?

A couple of issues come to mind: Is there a problem if you're using employees' personal phones for work related purposes. Are you going to pay for all or part of their service. Are you now liable to replace the phone if something happens to it.

Is there an ethical issue of tracking employees through a personal cell phone. They're not on the clock 24 hours a day.

We'd like your feedback. How are do you handle these issues. Your insight is much appreciated. Feel free to leave a comment here or send an email to

1 comment:

Jason Haines said...

If the employees have smartphones they can get the google latitude app which can be turned off. The company could only require you to log onto latitude when you were on the clock. As long as you sign an agreement stating the terms of use for their phones I don't think there should be any problems.

GPS on vehicles makes more sense buy would cost more. The latitude app is free.

My company gives me an allowance each month to put towards my cell phone. It more than covers my cost of using my phone for work purposes.

This also frees the company from paying expensive business prices for phones. They can pay employees per minute of use or just a flat rate such as in my case.