Mobile Device Logistics Part 6
4 Reasons Why Mobile Device Recycling Should Matter to Your Enterprise

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4 Reasons Why Mobile Device Recycling Should Matter to Your Enterprise

The last phase in the mobile device lifecycle is recycling. This is a topic that does not get a lot of attention from enterprise expense managers.  

And it makes sense given the priorities of most enterprise expense management leaders: they are hyper-focused on those matters most acute to them, such as gaining more visibility and control over their network expenditures and saving money as quickly as possible.  

Nonetheless, mobile device recycling is a step that is not overlooked in well-run managed mobility programs. They realize that finishing right is just as important as starting right in managing mobile devices.  

For example, security risks are probably at the top of the list of priorities. If the organization’s mobile devices are not wiped correctly, data could get into the hands of the wrong folks, and this could mean significant legal exposure, which will also translate into unwanted financial exposure.  

There are numerous reasons why it’s important to close out the managed mobility lifecycle properly with a strong recycling process and we’ll go into more specifics below.

Mobile Device Recycling

Mobile device recycling pertains to more than smartphones. It also can include tablets and other mobile devices. Its focus, like all recycling efforts, is on the safe decommissioning of this equipment in ways that are financially prudent but also responsible for the environment.  

For large enterprises, there is also a strong interest in seeing that the device is decommissioned in a way that also ensures that no data breaches occur. So, even for those less inclined to prioritize environmental concerns in expense management decision-making, this reason alone should be enough to take this final step in mobile device logistics seriously. 

Let’s look in more detail at the benefits of properly recycling your organization’s mobile devices. 

4 Benefits of Mobile Device Recycling

1. Device recycling offers a last step in ensuring organizational data is not compromised

We discussed this in prior articles, especially as relates to data wiping but data security is also important to consider in this step of mobile device logistics.

In many cases, in-house expense management leaders will not have to directly perform this work, as they will have a managed mobility services (MMS) and/or telecom expense management (TEM) provider helping them in this regard; they will simply oversee and ensure the work is completed.

And many third-party MMS companies partner with recycling companies that specialize in this type of work, so there are often many hands involved. Both your MMS provider – if you are working with one – and the mobile device recycling company should be knowledgeable about practices to ensure the protection of sensitive data before any recycled devices find new homes elsewhere.

As noted, data wiping security measures are taken earlier on in the mobile device decommissioning process, but this last step will also have skilled hands take steps to ensure that any sensitive data is protected in the event data were to accidentally reside on the phone.

This is the last call for data security, and well-run MMS programs have this in common. You do not want your program to be one of the many impacted by data breaches caused by negligence according to ERI. 

2. Device recycling ensures alignment with increasingly popular environmental corporate responsibility

Most companies nowadays, especially larger enterprises have become more attuned to the importance of acting responsibly regarding recycling and waste management practices. And most will have policies that prescribe proper handling of these devices in accordance with present-day standards.

By working with an MMS provider and/or device recycling company that is skilled in all device recycling best practices, companies can practice their embraced standards and report as much to their board and shareholders, which is seen positively.

3. The device recycling process can save your organization money via refurbishment

This is an interesting topic to discuss with potential MMS providers you are considering partnering with. Many, like Tellennium, will offer hot spare programs where refurbishment activities occur as part of that process.

This said some MMS providers and/or device recycling companies may also evaluate refurbishment options during this final stage of the mobile lifecycle. In most cases, in-house expense management leaders will receive their primary advice from their MMS provider.

If you are in the process of vetting MMS providers, be certain to discuss refurbishment options during your discovery process, as they should be able to provide how they prefer to manage this area. Either way, refurbished devices may be able to save your organization money, either by way of being refreshed and redeployed within your organization or resold to outside parties. 

4. Device recycling has many societal benefits

Social responsibility is becoming increasingly popular nowadays as society evolves. It’s becoming more commonplace for people who hold corporate power to take many of these societal benefits seriously; it is not simply environmental types that appreciate social value these days.

Corporations – especially publicly traded companies – are finding themselves graded by analysts around the metric of social responsibility as well so any means to embrace change in socially responsible ways can also add to the longer-term corporate bottom line by way of good press. 

Recycled devices are good for the environment (e.g., conservation and energy issues), devices can be resold to other organizations that can use them at lower costs, or they can be donated for use to those less fortunate. 

Closing Thoughts on Mobile Device Recycling

As mentioned, device recycling is also an area to remember when thinking about the management of your mobility universe . Because it’s one of the last steps within the mobility lifecycle and one that is not focused on driving big dollar savings quickly, it tends to get overlooked. Don’t make this mistake. 

For companies who believe in strong MMS program management and doing things right from start to finish, this last step also offers value in terms of data security, the potential for some financial savings, and many opportunities for pro-social impacts. 

If you’d like to consider Tellennium in your TEM vendor comparisons, contact us to schedule a brief demo of our solution.

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Rob Halik is a Senior Analyst at Tellennium, specializing in Managed Mobility Services, Telecom Expense Management, and Utility Bill Management. With over 25 years of industry experience, Rob provides enterprise expense management insights to help businesses optimize their operations and reduce costs. This article is a collaborative effort by our expert team members at Tellennium, including Greg McIntyre, Shawn Veitz, Matt McIntyre, and Todd Givens, who collectively bring over 100 years of industry experience.

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