Empowering a mobile workforce can be just as beneficial to your business as it is to your employees. But first you need to make sure you have the right tech in place, says Matthew Hall, product director at Rectron.
There are few things worse than spending hours of your day staring blankly at the stationary car in front of you as you wilt away in rush hour traffic.
When you start to do the calculation of just how many hours of your week, month and even year are spent sitting in a car, it can be depressing.
It’s hardly a wonder that more and more companies are seeing the value of enabling a mobile workforce. In fact, the global mobile workforce is expected to reach as much as 1,87-billion or 42,5% of the total global workforce by 2022.
Everyone gets something out
And, frankly, those companies which aren’t considering it are probably being left behind. Top employees are increasingly demanding versatility in both their work hours and their space. So much so that 40% of global candidates listed flexibility as one of the three most influential factors when making career decisions.
It just makes sense. Not only can companies enhance their employee value proposition by enabling employees to be mobile, but they can also reap the rewards of a workforce which is not restricted by time or place.
If greater productivity is your goal, mobility may well be the answer. Research shows that mobile workers can clock up to 240 more hours per year than their office-bound counterparts. Proof that companies can benefit just as much from a workforce on the move as employees.
Make sure you IT is up to scratch
Before you can send your staff out into the big, brave world, you need to make sure that you have the right IT infrastructure in place to accommodate this bold, new change.
You’ll probably need to start by deciding whether employees will be allowed to bring their own devices (BYOD) or whether the company will provide devices for them.
Kick security up a notch
Whichever option you choose, make sure that you have the right security measures in place. Because employees who are mobile are plugging in and out of different networks – not all of which are secure – they can easily introduce a virus to your company network.
To stop this from happening you will need to implement a reliable and comprehensive security tool such as Bitdefender Total Security.
You’ll also have to ensure your data is backed up using a reputable cloud vendor like Microsoft or Acronis. If something should happen to one of the devices on which important information is stored, you don’t want to be at risk of losing all that data.
Should you decide not to opt for a BYOD policy, you’ll need to equip employees with tech that allows them to work just as efficiently from a remote location as they would from the office.
Start with entry-level options
While it might be OK to use a smartphone or tablet to handle calls and email, each employee will need a laptop if they are to work seamlessly.
With mobility in mind, it makes sense for that laptop to be light and more portable. Because you will be outlaying quite a bit of capital, you may also want to opt for an entry-level laptop.
Take care with your tech
There simply isn’t any point in spending your company’s money on the necessary tech and then not protecting it. Especially if your employees are constantly on the go. Make sure you protect your assets with a safe yet sleek, Everki Notebook bag*, which has a generous amount of padding and, in some cases, a corner guard for greater protection.
Lastly, make sure that your policies around internet availability are up to date and will provide staff with the connectivity they need to keep functioning at an optimum pace.
The truth is that in enabling a mobile workforce through the correct IT infrastructure will eventually help you save costs on more expensive infrastructure like office space.
You may well do the calculations and find that giving employees the flexibility they want will be good for your business in the long run too.