It’s hard to believe – and amazing -- that it’s been more than eleven years since Steve Jobs first introduced the iPhone to the world. And although mobile device usage for business long predates the initial iPhone release, the upward growth curve in overall mobile usage is also amazing, jumping from 12% of overall digital consumption in 2008 to 51% by 2015.
Mobility by the Numbers
That trend is reflected in business usage of mobile devices, of course. According to one statistic, more than 70% of employees spend over two hours a week accessing their company’s information via a mobile device, and as early as 2011 iPass data found that mobile workers on average put in an additional 240 hours per year each.
Perhaps the greatest increases in worker productivity are seen in field-based roles that operate remote from other business operations. Remote healthcare work offers a plethora of examples in this regard, including notable successes of the Veterans Administration in delivering healthcare to veterans who don’t have access to local VA care, but many other organizations and businesses with field-service and remote workers are also finding opportunities to enhance efficiency through mobility programs.
These enhanced efficiencies are numerous, and of course they will vary from business to business and from role to role. But on the whole, mobility implementations can offer many distinct benefits, with these being just the tip of the iceberg:
- Access to real-time data flowing into the company
- Field access to diagnostic flows, equipment manuals, and other data
- Usage of job-specific applications
- Better worker locating, dispatch, and routing
- Less paperwork
- Remote worker collaboration
- On-the-fly meeting capabilities
- More accurate time tracking
Fighting Mobility Trends: A Bad Idea
Indeed, business mobility promises such tangible rewards that companies choosing to ignore it are perhaps fighting a technological wave so large that it could potentially capsize them if it’s not ridden properly. Blackberry, Sony, and Nokia all ignored mobile device trends at their peril and to their detriment in favor of shorter-term prospects – and companies that ignore the fundamental rise in the necessity for mobility are probably likewise doing so at their own risk.
With all of the success stories in business and enterprise mobility, then, why is that some companies are delaying (or even outright rejecting) implementing their own mobility policies?
There are probably as many answers to that question as there are businesses – but many of those answers will revolve around business decisions made based on both short-term costs and the potential security risks posed by remote access.
And those costs and risks can be enormous, if not properly managed – which is why mobility device management (MDM) and enterprise mobility management (EMM) are becoming commonplace acronyms for organizations and businesses that have or are currently looking at moving to mobility.
Like mobility itself, the growth in mobility management is taking place at all levels in both the government and the private sectors. The federal government, for example, has recognized the efficiencies of a properly-mobile workforce, and made a large-scale effort to consolidate costs with its Federal Strategic Sourcing Initiative (FSSI) Wireless program – resulting in both consolidated accounts and lower monthly recurring costs.
Those kinds of MDM gains are happening across the board, and help to move mobility from an add-on into the must-have category. At Wireless Watchdogs, we’ve helped small business, enterprise-level entities, and non-federal governmental agencies with their own mobility management, and seen dramatic results: Working with an agency of a large western state, for example, we were able to consolidate 140 accounts down to three, managing rate plans and reducing total cost of ownership in the process.
About Wireless Watchdogs
Helping organizations and companies realize the inherent promises of mobility is what we do. But even if we didn’t, the trend towards mobility – and its increasing necessity – are clearly visible. If your company sees that trend, too, but you need some help getting there, we have expertise in solutions in Enterprise Device Management, Mobility Management, and many other areas that may be of interest to you; feel free to contact us for more information.
If you're interested in mobility and how to manage it, you may also be interested in one of our free mobility management white papers, like this one: