Mobile at Work. It’s Not Just About Career Pages & Recruiting

Mobile's Place in Workplace Technology

Mobile is More Than Human Resources, Recruiting, and HR

In our jobs we are on the go no more than ever.  Our work responsibilities are moving us away from the desk.  Moving us to the plant floor, to the field, or on the road.  Those work emails, reports, and other responsibilities don’t read or finish themselves.  We still have job responsibilities to accomplish whenever and wherever we are.  This is where mobile comes in to play.

For recruiters and HR professionals much of the focus this year has been on mobile career websites and text messaging to communicate with your team or prospective candidates.  Maybe you’ve researched a mobile applicant tracking systems that allows employees to apply from their mobile device in one click and apply.  With the cloud mobile allows professionals to get what they need from the office anywhere and at anytime.  Our company’s corporate headquarters, servers, and intellectual property is literally right at our finger tips.

For marketers and customer service, mobile provides a way for our customers to engage in the moment wherever they are bypassing lengthy phone wait times in favor of ordering online or accessing mobile optimized sites to help us find directions, product research, or helpful tips and information.  Just last week I ordered some fabulous homemade gifts on the mobile Etsy app quickly paying via my Paypal account.  It’s quick, easy, efficient, and the products were homemade.  I can’t wait to see the look on Ryleigh’s face when she sees the homemade doll clothes I got for her.  At age 3 she is very savvy with the mobile technology herself able to navigate and slide her finger through screens and open apps better than most adults on my iPhone and iPad.  Don’t tell her but the girl is getting her own iPad Mini for her four year old birthday. She is a technology hog and always, always stealing my mobile device for herself.  Well, steal she will no more.

Mobile’s Place in Workplace Technology

Earlier this week I had the opportunity to attend the Kronos Works Conference in Las Vegas where they unveiled their Workforce Tablet application that focuses on mobile reporting and access to payroll, scheduling, and time keeping resources and systems for managers.  HR Technology companies in 2012 are launching mobile apps, workforce technology, and tools in droves.  It’s complex, involved, and employers now have choices from workforce management, payroll tools, mobile applicant tracking systems and sourcing apps like TalentBin.  Look to see more HR technology vendors and service provides moving this direction as employers look to adapt to the new flexible work scheduling shift at the workplace.

But mobile is not just about apps and fancy cloud based Saas technology, it’s about the ability to work and live in the moment wherever you are.  The primary use and benefit of mobile is to improve company communication.  Companies realize this but smartphones and tablets can be expensive and are easing into the expense.   Adding mobile devices is the top priority for business when it comes to mobile over the next 12 months as you see the graphic from a 2012 Gartner Research Study below.  Interestingly enough that same graphic has your organization’s corporate mobile strategy or policies much further down the priority line.  Personally, we should be creating and implementing a mobile use and technology policy that includes employee training before we issue them a new mobile device.

Cell Phone and Mobile Phone Policy for Employees

Mobile and cell phone technology is fun and exciting but it must present a solution to a current workplace problem.  Companies are not going to spend thousands or millions of dollars to integrate mobile into their strategies without discussing ROI.  Sure, it’s sexy, fun, and exciting but if it doesn’t improve my employee’s productivity, reduce employee turnover, or drive me more qualified candidates, your boss isn’t buying.  Look to more companies to use mobile as a way to reduce expenses not increase them.  BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policies will grow in number as organizations realize the additional expense of providing their workforce and staff with three devices:  smartphone, tablet, and laptop.  Are you willing to help drive down these expenses by integrating your personal and work technologies in a single place.  Or is mobile at work just for work and life outside of work should be separate when it comes to technology that is?


FTC Disclosure: I received compensation for attending the Kronos Works Conference.  Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Learn more about Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource, and the host of the Workology Podcast. More of her blogs can be found here.

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