According to a study by Strategy Analytics, 1.75 billion people, or 42 percent of the entire global workforce, will be mobile by 2020. With the rapid expansion of the remote workforce and employees demanding more flexible work hours and locations, IT professionals are scrambling to adjust. To meet these demands, companies must embrace the concept of enterprise mobility by making communication and collaboration solutions accessible from anywhere and on any device.
However, many IT professionals are still figuring out what enterprise mobility management looks like at their organization and what tools and strategies they should adopt. In this post, we’ll discuss those questions as well as what West’s Unified Communication Services can do to enable mobility across an organization.
What is Enterprise Mobility?
Enterprise mobility may seem like a self-explanatory term, and while it does apply to the adoption of mobile technologies (i.e. smartphones and tablets), it also encompasses the trend of employees working outside the office. For example, employees today can now start a project in the office, travel to a conference and then pick up their work at the event, the airport and the hotel.
Helping enable this trend is the movement of data and workplace tools to the Cloud. To access work files, employees previously had to be on-site or save files directly onto their device. However, now the Cloud allows employees to more easily access corporate data from anywhere. From an IT management perspective, the Cloud allows them to centralize security, and offer remote and on-site employees the same user experience.
The trend towards enterprise mobility is also quickly changing the face of unified communications. Over the past few years, UC providers focused on integrating telephony solutions with mobile devices, and various communication tools and functionalities into a single cloud platform.
What is Driving the Mobile Trend?
Like other business tech trends, enterprise mobility is a result of consumer tools and shifting preferences. The invention and rapid growth of smartphones and tablets encouraged employees to seek out similar tools and accessibility in their jobs.
On top of that, the rise of millennials and the remote workforce is forcing many companies to accommodate the desire to work outside the traditional confines of the office. Our own research on the mobile workforce found more than 90 percent of millennials, Gen Xers and baby boomers take advantage of their company’s remote work policy. This number will likely continue to grow as more millennials enter the workforce and push for more flexible work hours.
To retain key employees and stay competitive, companies must invest in mobile communication and collaboration solutions. Fortunately, with new technologies and the Cloud, it's easier than ever for enterprises to support mobility.
Watch: How to Enable Enterprise Mobility
3 Way Companies Embrace Mobility
Enterprise mobility has the power to increase productivity, support better communications among remote and in-office employees and reduce IT costs. But in order to reap these benefits, companies must embrace a few necessary tools.
1. Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS)
The cloud-based communications model combines tools like presence, telephony, instant messaging and video conferencing into a single platform, meaning employees can enjoy a consistent user experience across location, device and role. The cloud also makes it easier for IT teams to deploy solutions and updates quickly, and cost efficiently.
One of our UC solutions, West’s Mobile Connect, provides users with a single number, enabling inbound callers to reach them anytime from anywhere. Users can even check their office voicemail from their cell phone or email.
2. Real-time Collaboration
Business decisions are made faster than ever. Therefore, it’s critical that employees outside the office can engage and collaborate with colleagues in real-time. Our UC solutions can integrate with a variety of real-time collaboration apps like Cisco Jabber, Cisco Spark and Microsoft Skype for Business.
3. Mobile Conferencing
It’s no secret that mobile devices have changed how employees call into work meetings. With InterCall MobileMeet, companies can provide employees with a seamless, easy to manage mobile conferencing experience. The free app for Androids and iPhones allows users to see who's talking, store meeting profiles for quick access, schedule a meeting and invite participants via SMS, email or call now.
Enterprise mobility is leading companies into an age where flexibility is king, technology is an enabler, and consistent communication is a given. Organizations must adapt quickly and embrace new mobile workplace technologies to compete. Making mobile communication easier and more robust allows employees to better serve the company and in the end, improve their bottom line.
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