Smart phones most critical tool for half of business owners

Eoin MacManus, business director, Three (Image: Three)

19 January 2015

Seven out of 10 Irish business owners use a smart phone for their business, with half regarding it is as the single most important piece of technology allowing them to do their job, according to a new survey.

The survey was carried out by Behaviour & Attitudes among 350 business owner/managers among organisations of various sizes late last year for Three.

The survey found that 85% of respondents used smart phones for email, and more than a third (35%) said that they would likely use their devices even more in the next 12 months.

More than two thirds (67%) said that they use their devices to stay in touch with remote teams or personnel, while just less than that (61%) use it to stay in touch with relevant business research and trends.

Nearly half (45%) use a smart phone to access business apps such as banking, CRM and payroll, with 39% expecting such usage to increase in the next 12 months.

Around the same proportion (41%) use their devices for tethering, or sharing its internet connection with other devices such as laptops or tablets, with 31% expecting such usage to increase annually.

Voice over IP (VoIP) usage is strong, with 32% indicating the use of the likes of Skype and Viber for international calls.

Despite the range and diversity of phablets, tablets and other smart connected devices (SCD), almost half (46%) of respondents said that they favour smart phones over other devices when trying to get work done on the move

The survey indicated that security awareness is growing too, with nearly two thirds (61%) saying that they are more concerned about hacking through their PCs, laptops and smart phones than a year ago, with medium sized companies being most concerned at 67% and larger companies less concerned at (53%)

“A smart phone is one of the most vital tools that a business owner can have according to our research,” said Eoin MacManus, business director, Three. “A smart phone is seen as not just a phone: Business owners are using them to check email, manage schedules, stay up-to-date with industry news and trends as well as keeping in touch with colleagues.

“Almost a half of business owners are using business apps to help manage banking as well as CRM and even payroll while on the move, and four in ten report that technological developments are responsible for business growth. What is becoming increasingly pertinent is the security and manageability of their mobiles due to the amount of sensitive data that might be contained on one. Our survey suggests that mobile technology is a key component to businesses adapting and thriving in the modern economy,” said  MacManus.


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