Unified Communications Featured Article

Study: Business Mobility, Smartphone Usage on the Rise in UK

July 01, 2015

A recent industry report concerning the mobile workforce in the U.K. found that almost two-thirds of businesses in the country are providing their mobile workers with smartphones.

This information comes courtesy of research firm Strategy Analytics and its report, “The State of Enterprise Mobility In the U.K.” Its survey of more than 300 regional businesses showed that the need for smartphones while on the job is growing across markets and employee types. While this number is large, however, it does naturally bring up the topic of bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies where employees are urged to use their own smartphones on the job.

According to Gina Luk, the senior analyst of mobile workforce strategies at Strategy Analytics, the rise in need for workplace mobile devices has had an impact on the management and security of phones in bring-your-own-device (BYOD) settings where IT is often responsible for controlling data access from company-owned and employee-owned handsets.

“Consumerization of IT is one of the factors driving mobility in the U.K. market, and employees are increasingly using personal mobile devices for work purposes,” Luk said. “The rise of BYOD has created a massive need for mobile security and management solutions as a means to control BYOD's security vulnerabilities.”

What this means for businesses, of course, is that they must supplement their BYOD policies with software that can help IT manage leagues of phones on their corporate networks. Mobile device management as a global market is expected to experience a compound annual growth rate of 25.40 percent between 2014 and 2019, and that is no surprise given that Strategy Analytics found that 48 percent of the U.K. workforce is mobile and travels about 20 percent of the time.

This leads to companies supporting a wide range of smartphone types as well. The report says most U.K. businesses currently support Android and iOS while many plan to support Windows Phone within the next 12 months. Spending on mobile devices increased from 2013 to 2014 as a matter of course, but there is a move toward BYOD to reduce overall costs with mobility.

There is also a growing need for companies to support mobile devices in their overall unified communications (UC) platforms. Platform providers such as Tadiran with its Aeonix UC can offer a host of communications features in a single package. This includes support for mobile and operation in the cloud for easy user access and IT management. Aeonix received a TMC Product of the Year award for its ability to be fault tolerant, function as an on-site or cloud-based infrastructure, and scale with businesses as they grow.

Edited by Dominick Sorrentino

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