Today, more people own smartphones than ever before and with the increase in the adoption of mobile devices, the number of employees expecting to access work wherever they are has also grown. Due to technological advancements that allow efficient and sustained connectivity across multiple locations, mobile workforces are quickly becoming a normal part of the workplace.
In the next few years, the mobile workforce will include upwards of 100 million employees in the United States alone, which is more than 70 percent of American employees. And the global mobile workforce is set to reach close to 2 billion people by 2020—nearly 45 percent of the worldwide workforce.
Employees now expect to be able to complete common tasks and be notified about important business events at any time and from anywhere. And there is no question that enabling a mobile workforce has clear benefits for both employees and the companies they work for.
Research shows that employees who say their employers use mobile technology well are typically more creative, satisfied, and loyal—and 49 percent of workers believe that being able to work from any location at any time has the greatest impact on how productive they are. The result for companies are happier workers that are more productive and engaged, resulting in a better bottom line.
Managing a mobile workforce has its challenges—companies must work to overcome unique set of issues with communication, productivity, and security.
One of the biggest challenges of managing a dispersed and mobile workforce is fostering a working environment that cultivates a sense of community and connection across teams, even when they are working from different locations or outside of the office.
In addition, with the increased use of mobile devices and the need for employees to access tasks, information, and data from their enterprise systems, organizations are tasked with finding solutions that ensure they enable them to provide intuitive, modern experiences that still meet the security and compliance practices they have in place.
Here are some useful tips to keep in mind when managing a mobile workforce:
Make it easy to communicate
One of the biggest pitfalls of a mobile workforce is that it’s hard to ensure everyone is on the same page and feels connected. The need for clear communication is amplified as the workplace itself is in constant flux with more flexible working options. Without a physical office, teams must rely on collaboration tools, emails, phone calls, and other technology to share information. Companies should leverage communication tools that make it easy for teams to stay in contact, find the information they need, and complete tasks across multiple channels. For example, an employee experience portal like Sapho enables companies to integrate collaboration tools with multiple enterprise systems, consolidating tasks and key information in a single place that can be accessed from any device.
Provide a consistent experience across enterprise systems
Many enterprise applications were not designed to meet the needs of employees using mobile devices. As a result, mobile enterprise apps often end up being hard-to-use, bloated with unnecessary features, and complex workflows or login processes that aren’t suited for work on-the-go. Employees become frustrated when they are forced to remember multiple login credentials, follow complicated rules, and learn different applications just to complete basic tasks. With Sapho, mobile workers can easily complete tasks with a single click and instantly access information from all their systems in a single, easy-to-use interface.
Maintain security and compliance practices
Another major concern for business leaders when it comes to managing mobile workforces is security. With mobility programs (BYOD, CYOD, etc.) on the rise, companies find themselves at increased risk for a number of different mobile security hazards. When managing mobile workers, it’s important to set strong policies and educate employees about best practices to raise awareness about the larger risks of mobile. Sapho’s native mobile app is designed to work like existing internal web applications, making it easy to offer mobile apps with a modern interface while remaining compliant with existing enterprise security practices.
The widespread growth of mobile workers around the world presents challenges for companies, but enabling a mobile workforce comes with benefits for employee productivity, satisfaction, and engagement. Employee experience solutions, such as Sapho, which streamline communication, securely integrate tasks and information from business apps, and deliver them to any device is a crucial step towards enabling organizations to successfully manage their mobile workforces.