Techbeat: Mobilising the enterprise
13 October 2015 | 0
One need only look at the average train or Luas carriage on a work morning to see the extent of mobile device usage. However, when it comes to implementation of management systems, content controls and all the other supports and resources, just how far have Irish organisations progressed?
To get a picture of the Irish situation, TechBeat, in association with Three Ireland, surveyed Irish IT professionals to see what is in use, what is being used to control it, and for perceptions and impressions of how the combined stack of technologies impacts their lives. The results are illuminating to say the least.
Firstly, the 139 respondents reported that, despite a recent IDC study showing that the humble desktop PC is still the primary device for most workers in Europe, laptops take that honour in Ireland. Almost half (49%) reported that the laptop was the number one device, followed by the desktop PC (42%), with tablets and smart phones each seeing just 4% as a primary work device. Given that the sample is IT professionals, this may be unsurprising, but one might have expected the all-in-one tablet format to have perhaps pushed the tablet portion a little higher.
The respondents were asked about the effect of smart phone usage on the use of a PC, including laptops. Almost half (45%) said that it had no effect, but slightly more (47%) said that their PC usage had decreased as a result of using smart phones. Just 7% said PC usage had increased due to smart phone usage and may reflect special cases where certain apps or functions require regular synchronising with a PC.
The mobile phone spread was an interesting result. Unsurprisingly, the iPhone is the largest section, specified by 73% of companies, followed by 47% for Samsung phones. Blackberry came in at just 9%. However, in the Other category (32%), the combined spread of Nokia/Windows Phone responses amounted to 13%. This contrasts sharply with general Windows Phone market share of around 3% as of late 2014, according to IDC figures from February of this year.
When asked to specify whether they had one phone for both work and leisure, more than three quarters (76%) said they did, with the balance indicating two devices for the discrete purposes. Perhaps a little surprisingly from this sample, no one specified using more than two devices.
With the undoubted impact on all aspects of working life of mobile devices, enabled by near ubiquitous connectivity, respondents were asked if they left the devices on constantly. Nearly half (45%) said they did, as they needed to be constantly available. More than one in 10 (11%) said they did but only answered work calls in work hours. More than a third (38%) said they did but only answered important calls outside of office hours. Only 6% said they switched off their phone outside of office hours.
The next question asked about the perceived impact of mobile working on social/private or personal time. Nearly half (49%) said that mobile working did limit social or personal time, but this was balanced by 48% that said it did not. Just 3% did not know if it had an impact.
Allied to this was a question on the impact of mobile resources at the disposal of respondents on personal productivity. The vast majority (85%) said that mobile resources increased their productivity, with 13% saying it had no effect. A worrying 2% said that mobile resources negatively affected their productivity. While that 2% may be something of an anomaly, the 85% who indicated a positive impact does reflect the increased accessibility, flexibility and availability of enterprise resources achievable with mobile technologies. While again it would be expected that the use of such technologies would be more widespread among IT professionals, the results are reflective of the wider adoption of mobility in enterprise and its positive effects.