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Aruba Survey Shows Double-Digit Increases in Employee Loyalty Possible

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Lorna GareyCompanies whose employees rate organizational support for mobile technologies as cutting edge can see double-digit rises in productivity (16 percent), creativity (18 percent), loyalty (21 percent) and satisfaction (23 percent) compared with employers with poorly rated mobility strategies.

That’s the headline from a new study by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), sponsored by Aruba Networks. The EIU asked 1,865 full-time employees representing a range of ages, business departments and industries about their employers’ mobile savvy. Responses reveal potential for the channel: Just 11 percent gave their employers the top rating of mobility “pioneer.” Most, 42 percent, say their employers are “adequate.”

Aruba Networks' Chris KozupNot exactly a ringing endorsement.

“The role of partners in all of this is as a trusted business adviser,” says Chris Kozup, VP of marketing at Aruba, an HPE company. “It’s not just about coming in and plugging in a box. It’s far more about understanding customers’ business goals and being able to play that more strategic role in terms of aligning tech with desired outcomes. Partners that excel in this space will be able to use research and analysis like this to articulate the business case around how making more forward-looking investments in technology will help them move toward their business goals.”

Kozup says the study establishes a link between mobile-optimized working environments and a measurable increase in employee engagement.{ad}

“We believe that makes mobility an even greater investment priority,” he says.

Among the findings, 60 percent of respondents said mobile technology makes them more productive, while an additional 45 percent say mobility is linked to greater creativity. And that doesn’t just apply to Millennials. The survey is evenly split between age groups and genders, and a respondent’s age was not found to be a factor in how mobile technology impacts their performance and engagement. 

As to what makes a “mobile-first” employee experience, the ability to …

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… work anytime, anywhere is seen as having the single biggest impact on productivity, cited by 49 percent of respondents. An additional 38 percent say it has the greatest impact on how satisfied they are with their employers.

Other important characteristics include the ability to collaborate effectively, access information quickly and easily while mobile and use devices of choice. In fact, among respondents seen as early technology adopters, four out of 10 say they would never work for a company that did not allow them to use their own mobile devices for work.

Currently, 54 percent of employers provide access to the company network from any mobile device, while 46 percent offer a hot-desking environment with mobile connectivity at any location. Among highly rated companies, 39 percent provide their employees with voice and video collaboration tools, such as Google Hangouts or Skype for use on mobile devices, compared with 26 percent of less mobile-savvy firms.

The report offers some actionable suggestions:

  • Offer employees IT support for mobile devices they own; this is a defining characteristic of highly rated employers and is a service opportunity for partners as well as a way for internal IT teams to boost their profile.
  • Implement policies and practices that, as much as possible, allow people to work wherever and whenever they wish. “Highly regulated financial institutions will obviously have more limitations than college campuses,” says Kozup. But the trend should be toward flexibility.
  • Employees see collaboration as the key to creativity and company loyalty, so help customers pursue strategies that establish mobile technology as a platform for collaboration.
  • Address the concerns of early adopters by working through issues like privacy and work-life balance. These power users tend to be desirable employees, and their views may well be mainstream in the near future.

Is your mobility practice booming? Let me know, either in comments or direct. Follow executive editor @LornaGarey on Twitter.


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