The full-time corporate office where everyone is in the same building all day, every day, is clearly a thing of the past. IT Service Providers are fully engaged with supporting mobile work and, in many respects, is leading the way in helping the organization to increase productivity, enable more effective customer support, attract and retain talent and increase corporate agility. IT is not a barrier to making mobile work programs effective. While there may be many technical issues involved in supporting mobile work, the fact is, in general, IT Service Providers are doing their job so well they make it appear easy. However, ensuring data and network security – as well as reliability and access – remain in the top priority list. Mobile work is a powerful means of enhancing corporate competitiveness. Business Leaders who are not actively supporting mobile work arrangements are putting their organizations at serious risk. So what should you do to ensure that you are providing world-class support to your organization’s flexible work programs?
First, there is no question that supporting work wherever and whenever it occurs is a prime requirement for the modern office. Be sure that your HR and Facilities flexible work programs include policies supporting mobile workers. You don’t have to let security and connectivity standards be compromised. The one thing that keeps effective Business Leaders awake at night is the fear of compromised data. The good news is that Security As A Service (Saas) Providers are maintaining security while enabling mobile workers.
Second, focus IT support for mobility on enhancing customer service capabilities. We believe this perspective is essential because mobility options provide an efficient direct path from customer to employee. While general employee productivity is also important, it usually takes care of itself as mobile workers learn to use technology effectively and adapt it to their personal needs.
Finally, remember that providing remote access to data and company servers is just as important to your mobile workforce as having a laptop and a cell phone. And it has almost as powerful an impact on productivity. The full-time corporate office worker has almost become an exception to the general “rule” of working anytime/anyplace. Technology today enables flexible work, and an increasing proportion of the “new professionals” are moving around frequently, accessing the Internet, their colleagues and company files from wherever they happen to be at any point in time. Like a cell phone number, an Internet email address connects you to a person, not a place.
That new reality is only happening, however, because IT has bought into the concept, is actively supporting it and is implementing the platforms, networks and infrastructures to make it real.