Nearly one-third of the global population is under coronavirus lockdown. Large-scale quarantines and travel restrictions are posing challenges for businesses to continue their operations. While workforce protection remains the top priority for enterprises, prolonged isolation is an eye-opener to adopt workplace mobility.
As the world continues to fight the pandemic, flatten the curve and try to maintain normalcy by working from home — teams everywhere are trying to stay productive so that daily operations can continue to some degree. But this is not an easy task. By working remotely, there are a lot of challenges especially in communication and connectivity, not to mention challenges with remaining productive throughout the day.
There was a time when mobility at work was considered a perk. Today, almost everyone, at some point, agrees that flexibility and liberty to work from home is essential. The 2020 Enterprise Mobility Trends Report anticipates that 42% (18.7 billion) of the global workforce will embrace mobility by 2020.
The need for workplace mobility
Workplace mobility empowers people to work from anywhere, at any time and from any device. It directly impacts employee productivity as well as the speed to execute business processes. How?
Dan Ariely, in his book Predictably Irrational, categorizes human behaviour in lines with the market and social norms. Market norms apply a monetary value to every transaction — salaries or payments against skill/talent. Whereas, social norms rely on the exchange of gifts, kindness, favour, etc. and is far away from any monetary transaction.
While stringent work policies tend to inculcate market norms (skills are calculated against salaries), flexibility instils social norms (empathy and concern). People are willing to do more on their free-will.
“In this 24/7 work environment social norms have a great advantage: they tend to make employees passionate, hardworking, flexible, and concerned. In a market where employees’ loyalty to their employers is often wilting, social norms are one of the best ways to make workers loyal, as well as motivated.” – suggests Ariely
How apps and AI-driven mobility solutions for employees can keep businesses operationally afloat?
By 2025, the number of unique mobile subscribers is projected to reach 5.9 billion. Market researchers also anticipate that there’ll be nearly 25 billion IoT devices, most of which will comprise business-related connected devices. However, it’s not just handy devices that are enabling mobility at work. Technologies are also empowering businesses to readily adopt mobility.
For instance, Google has introduced a deck of enterprise mobility solutions. It provides cloud support to collaboration apps and management tools. Apart from G Suite, Google has invested in android and chrome platforms to support workplace mobility.
Workplace mobility apps and features
Many organizations require time logs to ensure overtime and bonuses. Apps like SecurTime provide a cloud-based time-attendance workforce management solution with real-time tracking. It seamlessly integrates with payroll/HRMS and biometric systems without any dependency on hardware.
When people work remotely, creating a virtual collaborative environment can concern businesses. While email is the channel for all formal communication, it’s usual to lose track of conversations in emails and messengers. To organize work and priorities at the team level, Slack and Trello are popular apps.
Organizations with in-house software development teams often face hassles while planning, tracking, resolving bugs & issues and releasing products. Jira — an agile project management tool helps organizations to track every phase of product development and team progress irrespective of their physical location.
AI-driven enterprise mobility solutions
Mobile devices and cloud platforms are making it easier for teams to collaborate and deliver. Moreover, employees save substantial time on travelling, which gives them time to indulge in activities that foster creativity.
Gartner predicts that by 2021, 40% of new enterprise applications will include AI technologies. So far, the adoption of AI was seen in consumer-facing operations to enhance customer experiences. Now, organizations are also focusing on enhancing employee experiences. For example, leading organizations are using NLP-powered chatbots for handling employee-queries regarding leave, work from home intimation, business-travel, etc.
[Related: AI in recruitment and discovering talent]
Technology can equip employees with information at hand. AI solutions like Zelros provide instant information to Insurance sales advisors regarding products, clients, etc.
AI-powered applications are becoming more human-centred and they can execute commands without touching/pressing a button. For example, with gesture recognition technology and voice user interface, simple tasks like sharing a file, reading a report, etc. can be done while driving, spending time with kids, evening walks, etc. removing dependencies that delay work.
[Related: How does AI recognize hand gestures]
The use of AI is evolving to automatically prioritize problems and send notifications to the concerned departments. SVM (Support Vector Machine) and CNN (Convolutional Neural Network) are machine learning algorithms for building classification models.
The bottom line
While one can prevent wars, natural calamities and pandemics are unavoidable. In the current context, the heat of the Corona outbreak is severely impacting industries including aviation, e-commerce, education, tourism, entertainment, hospitality, electronics, consumer and luxury goods. Businesses are thriving to remain operationally afloat.
Embracing mobility at work today can prepare organizations for tomorrow’s pandemic resilience.
Mantra Labs is helping enterprises invest in building their pandemic resilience by planning and scaling their mobility infrastructures, and enable greater use of mobility as a service. Talk to us today to know how we can help you, or reach out to us at email@example.com.