The idea of a mobile workforce may appear to be novel, but it isn’t the case. The term “telecommuting” was developed in 1972 when Jack Nilles worked remotely on a sophisticated NASA communication project. Organizations gradually grew to accept that employees did not need to be physically present in the office to do their tasks.
Being a mobile worker has become considerably more convenient thanks to technological advancements. Companies are attempting to keep up with the increased need for seamless technology (and infrastructure) for employees, given that they are heavy users of technology outside of the workplace.
This is especially important to streamline remote workforce management and provide the flexibility that today’s generation requires. In this article, we take you through the fundamentals of what mobile workforce, its advantages, and disadvantages.
What is a Mobile Workforce?
A mobile workforce is described as a group of people who operate outside of a traditional office setting. These professionals aren’t only restricted to those who work from home. The remote workforce includes deskless workers such as retail personnel, insurance salespeople, and gig workers such as Uber drivers.
This sort of worker does not define a remote workforce. It is also determined by the technology that enables employees of this workforce to perform their duties. A remote workforce reflects the transition to data and geographic mobility to support the “anytime, anyplace” aspect of modern work.
Cloud computing is one technology that has assisted in this huge transition. Employees may access data saved in the cloud from anywhere, making it simpler to stay connected while being mobile. Another important element of a remote workforce is flexibility.
Workforce scheduling technology makes the type of employment and the pressures faced by hourly workers to adhere to strict shift timings less difficult.
Over time, the number of mobile workers has steadily increased. With the correct technology, we can now record conversations on our phones, use transcription software, snap photographs of difficult situations and send them over in seconds, and, with the correct technology, even use augmented reality to repair a refrigerator that is causing customers problems.
Pros & Cons of Mobile Workforce
Technology is changing people’s perceptions of what a regular job looks like. The office, formerly a central site where managers and employees congregated daily to plan and accomplish company operations, has evolved into a much more flexible concept as organizations allow employees to work remotely.
Today’s workers may work from their homes, holiday cottages, coffee shops, libraries, parks, and a variety of other locations. To emphasize the fully mobile notion, employees may check email, write papers, collaborate on projects, and enter data from moving places such as vehicles, trucks, aircraft, trains, and buses.
Any worker can argue that the cubicle and meeting room are useless using a range of technology such as internet hot spots, tablets, laptops, and smartphones, as well as software or apps such as cloud-based documents and video conferencing.
The issue a corporation must answer is whether just about all of its employees can operate as efficiently outside of the office as they do within. Examine the benefits and drawbacks of allowing a diverse workplace to determine if this strategy is good for your company.
A remote workforce may provide your company with several advantages that can aid in its development, productivity, and profitability, including:
Allow Remote Working.
According to research, employees who can work from home are more productive and satisfied, as well. Avoiding long and unpleasant journeys minimizes worker stress and expenses. Setting up workers to accomplish tasks, answer calls, or otherwise contribute to your company’s success is as simple as a connection to the internet these days.
Savings on expenses.
Businesses might save money by renting or purchasing less space for central facilities as more workers work from home. Workers with flexible workspaces have a place to go while they are at the workplace.
Better Time Management.
Because workers may readily connect to work via smartphones, tablets, and laptops, previously unproductive periods of time can now be used to perform a range of projects and activities. Employees may check and send emails, write and modify documents, and complete other work wherever they are via Wi-Fi or mobile hotspots.
While a remote workforce has numerous benefits, it also has significant drawbacks.
Increases possible security threats.
Consider the higher risk of security risks before expanding your remote staff. Organizations with a large remote workforce are much more exposed to cybercrime and internet security issues than companies with office staff. However, with appropriate workforce planning, this issue may be readily averted.
Reduces the effectiveness of communication.
Workers that operate from home have a unique communication style. They communicate with their classmates using mobile devices, including cell phones, tablets, and computers. As previously said, these teams are frequently more diversified. These two variables are often positive, but they can have a detrimental impact on communication effectiveness. Working in an online setting and in groups with varied communication styles necessitates a unique set of workplace etiquette.
Collaboration is reduced.
Employees working from home have the potential to stifle cooperation. Face-to-face engagement makes it simpler to immediately express ideas and opinions in a meaningful way, which is more difficult in an online setting.
The mobile workforce allows workers to work remotely and has provided various competitive benefits for many businesses. Including higher productivity and a more diversified workplace. However, you should think about how you’ll deal with the difficulties it may bring.
One of the most successful methods for firms to get the most out of their remote workforce is to increase diversity awareness and good communication skills via training.
Are you ready to foster a work environment where everyone can achieve their full potential? With QuestionPro Workforce, you can learn more about how to gather ongoing feedback from employees and take action to create a positive effect on your business.