Mobile companies: What enterprises gain by embracing mobile workers

By Jonathan Crowl

| Insurance

Some companies are thriving partly due to the fact that they have of mobile employees. Other businesses are slower to embrace the power of mobility, unsure of how to marry their traditional office cultures with workers who want and need to be outside the office.

Mobile companies depend on mobile workers to perform essential functions within the organization. One of the main challenges is effectively managing these workers. Meanwhile, the organization must understand the unique challenges and needs of a mobile workforce, giving employees the technology and support they need to be productive when out of the office. If you’re not sure how to define, support and integrate mobile employees into your organization, here is some helpful info to get you started on your journey:

The challenges faced by mobile companies

The challenge for businesses is supporting this mobile work without compromising security. Mobility is only worth the investment if it improves productivity and delivers ROI for the business, but mobile companies need the right infrastructure in place to capture these benefits while avoiding legitimate security threats. A mobile device management solution is the first step toward securing mobile workers. By implementing this software, companies can strengthen security in a BYOD environment and remotely regulate permissions and data access for devices. Businesses are even able to remotely wipe data in the event a device is lost or stolen.

Download Gartner report on managed mobility services

These mobile employees also need to do their part in securing their end of enterprise mobility. This means installing software updates and patches, following best practices when it comes to accessing data on public networks and being mindful of company security policies.

The benefits of being a mobile company

Some executive leaders worry the potential downsides of mobility aren’t worth the risk of empowering mobile employees. However, there’s mounting evidence that the benefits of mobile employees can affect a business on several vital levels, while the enterprise can neutralize security threats through effective management and training. Connected workers experience a 20 percent to 25 percent jump in productivity when their organization uses social technologies that support collaboration.

The flexibility of working remotely provides a range of benefits to employees, which ultimately makes them better workers. In addition to increased productivity, workers are happier and less stressed when they’re allowed to work outside the office. According to a report from PGi, a stunning 82 percent of remote workers experience lower stress levels when working remotely. Those same employees say mobile work results in improved job morale and fewer sick days taken from work.

Meanwhile, businesses see certain expenses decline by enabling mobile workers. For example, they need less office space or supplies, two areas that reduce operational overhead when cut. Depending on the size of the company, these savings could be significant. Forbes reports that by employing mobile employees, insurance company Aetna has unloaded 2.7 million square feet of office space and saved approximately $78 million.


How to integrate mobility into your company

In addition to equipping your enterprise mobile network with a scalable mobile device management (MDM) solution, you have many options for supporting mobile employees and getting more value out of these roles. Enterprise social media tools are valued investments for most companies, enabling collaboration and communication so productivity and teamwork don’t suffer when employees work remotely.

Businesses can also invest in cloud-based software and solutions, as well as the development of an enterprise app store, regardless of whether it includes internally developed tools. Companies can reinforce security through virtual private networks to establish safe channels for communication and data transfer, and mobile employees should be in regular contact with IT to stay up-to-date on new threats, vulnerabilities or trends in mobile security.

Mobile employees aren’t going anywhere. As workers see the personal benefits to this type of employment, they will seek out businesses willing to provide this alternative to the traditional 9-to-5 office job. Fortunately, businesses don’t have to decide between employee happiness and the company’s bottom line — mobile workers can serve both interests at the same time.