Application-Based Work Driving Need For Mobility
One would be hard-pressed to find a task that has not been benefited or changed by technology. This idea is illustrated especially well by the evolution of smartphones. People use their mobile devices to meet a great deal of needs in the present day - namely within the enterprise. In terms of office productivity, the smartphone has become a go-to essential.
But according to Forbes contributor Kurt Marko, offices have experienced some trouble when trying to embrace mobility in a meaningful way. There is a difference between just using something and finding new ways to leverage it. Being able to communicate on a smartphone increases productivity because phone calls can be made and received from a greater number of places, but failing to pursue further innovation sells the technology short. Often, companies don't realize they're not using these tools to their full potential as telecom resources, especially.
"Smartphones have evolved into the do everything Swiss Army information appliance most people are never [wanting to] leave home without, yet they remain glorified PDAs for most business users," wrote Marko. "Why the dichotomy?"
In terms of communication, the solution lies in what kind of applications are being pursued. It is not enough just to allow staffers to use their smartphones in the workplace - they have to be supplied with the resources to succeed. This is why a greater number of organizations are turning to cloud unified communications in order to better equip their team members for the modern world. Having to navigate multiple devices, programs, channels and even locations can sap valuable time the more it occurs. By bringing together every connection in one software-defined interface, businesses can keep employees satisfied and productive.
Mobile Apps On The Rise In Business
People love to use their smartphones for everything. When presented with the idea that they can use their mobile devices at work, chances are that they are going to be pretty pleased and eager to do so. This idea is supported by a recent survey - according to Frost & Sullivan research vice president Melanie Turek, 82 percent of respondents reported that they had deployed at least one app to support remote work. Additionally, 79 percent of participants planned on pursuing other programs of this caliber.
"North American businesses cite a range of reasons for implementing mobile worker apps," Turek wrote. "Top drivers focus on anticipated improvements in employee productivity and business process efficiencies, but most businesses also point to enhanced customer engagement, increased employee collaboration, cost savings, new revenue opportunities and competitive advantage."
These are the kinds of benefits that companies can achieve when they invest in cloud UC. Professionals are starting to expect more autonomy in their work schedules - generally regarding where they are allowed to conduct business from. Staying at home for the day or bringing a laptop to the coffee shop one afternoon are no longer outlandish demands thanks to the cloud, but organizations need to get serious about enabling their team members to work in this way.
Smartphones On The Way To Workplace Dominance
By some accounts, the modern professional is one that prefers to be mobile. Smartphones are clearly valuable in the workplace and they are primed to play an even bigger role down the line, but Marko believes that there is still a slow uptick in meaningful adoption. In his eyes, they are still playing second fiddle to PCs and laptops - and in many ways he's right.
"The question is why," Marko stated. "Why have smartphones - indeed, the mobile device market is utterly dominated by phones, more so than ever with the rise of large-screen phablets - become the preferred and often exclusive information and communication platform for younger people yet often remain accessories at work?"
The key is to re-examine the smartphone as a whole. This is not just a new endpoint - it's a revolution. Having voice, email, SMS and other channels on a single device is not enough, even if they are all separately enabled by the cloud. By including them all within the same unified communications application, professionals can effortlessly have single conversations that reach across multiple mediums. The ability to use phone calls and text-based messaging on an all-inclusive platform breeds powerful interactions that effectively destroy siloed communications. In order to fully support the evolving needs of tech-savvy staffers, unified communications will be essential.