There have been big improvements in the way remote workers communicate since the pandemic due to technological innovation. But there is one area of the workforce which is being ignored and that’s the mobile workforce, encompassing a range of professionals whose day-to-day activities span outside the office or home setting. Chris Brenchley, Director, PiPcall, explains the various different options available to improve communications for the mobile workforce.
Since the rise of hybrid working, business communication has evolved immensely. For the 44% of workers in the UK still embracing a hybrid model, they have experienced a golden era of technological innovation. However, while Unified Communications is re-shaping ways of working for office and remote employees, there is a ‘tale of two cities’ with a second workforce being ignored.
This is the mobile workforce, encompassing a range of professionals whose day-to-day activities span outside the office or home setting – typical of construction, real estate, domiciliary care, logistics, retail, transportation and more.
Lay of the land: the gaps in business mobile calling
For these industries in particular, mobile phone calls have been a key communication pillar for over 30 years. Made over a dedicated mobile voice network, they are consistent and reliable. However, this way of communicating has its limitations. Until now, there has been a lack of advanced calling features, call analytics and an inability to interconnect individual mobile users into one system using the dedicated mobile voice network.
Comparatively, mobile apps from VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) or cloud phone systems have led the charge in innovation, providing features like call recording, call transfer, interconnected staff networks and shared contact directories. However, these calls take place over the Internet and therefore rely on a stable Internet or mobile data connection to perform at business standards – which isn’t always possible for deskless workers.
What’s more, there is a lack of available reporting and data for mobile phone calls. For example, there’s no easy way for a sales director to monitor the amount of calls their team is having, or for how long. If this data were possible to get hold of it could be used to boost operational efficiencies massively.
In some organisations, there are also a whole host of different mobile devices and solutions including SIMs, eSIMs and BYOD (bring your own device) within one company. It can mean poor security compliance, hidden costs and administrative complexity for IT teams.
GDPR compliance risks are especially high when it comes to BYOD, because employees’ personal and work lives become intertwined. BYOD has many benefits such as cost savings and flexibility for staff but can attenuate security. In a global survey, nearly half (45%) of companies said they had suffered a compromise involving a mobile device in the past 12 months. The same report also highlighted that securing BYOD devices can be considerably more difficult than securing company owned ones.
Re-defining business mobile calling
As it stands, making calls over the mobile voice network is the best way to get consistent and reliable calls out and about, however, it is underutilised as a platform that can deliver advanced calling features. By making use of this tried and tested voice network, on the go workers using company mobiles, or their own mobiles, can access calling PBX-style features best suited to their job role.
Ultimately, to empower these employees, business leaders need a GDPR-compliant solution that can connect, secure and manage a mobile ecosystem. This coupled with advanced features like call recording and call transfer, interconnected staff networks and ring groups for mobile calling will transform ways of working.
These features are invaluable and increase the scope of what workers can do on the move, contributing to creating a frictionless customer service. Like a desk phone that fits in your pocket, features allow employees to seamlessly hand over calls to available colleagues in the right department so that customers’ needs are met. Imagine you’re a quantity surveyor on-site and you get an important call from a supplier – hard hat on and surrounded by building work – you need to be able to easily transfer the call to a colleague in the office with ease so they can get all the necessary information for you.
On top of this, call recording features are an important element for capturing information for employees working far from a desk, without the need for a pen and paper pad. By recording calls, conversations can be accessed at a later date, eliminating the risk of vital information being missed or forgotten.
Transforming BYOD so that it’s user-friendly and secure is also necessary. This is a win-win for employee and employers as users can have a separate number, dialler and contacts directory for work-only. Businesses can enhance employee satisfaction, productivity and facilitate a better work/life balance leaving staff uninterrupted by business calls after hours. Paired with access to mobile data paid for by the business, this will further encourage employees to utilise their personal devices and increase business cost savings on handsets.
By embracing a solution that integrates these tools, organisations can flex their agility, enabling mobile workforces to collaborate effectively regardless of their location or the devices they use.
Dialling into simplicity
Important conversations take place on the go which is why businesses need to level-up their mobile communications. Fortunately, innovation in the space is finally taking off and businesses can adopt a singular solution without any trade-offs. By choosing a solution that can harness the mobile voice network of the big four mobile network operators (MNOs) to ensure consistent and clear communications – coupled with advanced calling features – on the go workforces can get the mobile solution that’s missing. It shouldn’t just be remote and hybrid workers that get to experience a technology revolution, the distributed workforce should get what they deserve too. Rather than a tale of two cities, we need a ‘story of innovation’.
Embracing tools that enable smooth and reliable communications will supercharge business operations. With a modernised business mobile calling solution in place, on the go workers (and all workers for that matter) can simplify communications, get better data to improve performance, maintain outstanding communications and propel themselves towards greater success.Click below to share this article