North’s mobile workers want to break free

15 Dec 2006

Northern Irish workers want to take advantage of mobile technologies to work at home or out from the office more, a new survey from Damovo has found.

More than 100 workers in the public and private sectors in the North were polled as to their use of and attitudes to mobile devices such as smart phones, PDAs or laptops at work. More than nine out of 10 respondents said mobile devices were important or to their work, with 72pc specifically saying they were “very important”.

Just over half of those surveyed (51pc) said that they used one mobile device at work, with 38pc using two and 11pc using three.

The main benefit from mobility is the ability to work from home, cited by 52pc of respondents, with a further 29pc giving the reason of greater flexibility to work from any non-office location. Some 12pc said the technology would allow improved collaboration with work colleagues and customers and 7pc said the main benefit was the ability to work from more than one device.

Voice calls remain the most important mobile application during the working day, according to answers ranking mobile uses in order of importance. Next came internet access and mobile email, followed by text messages. Interestingly, viewing or editing attachments weren’t seen as important.

Overall, the vast majority of respondents (87pc) said that having these technologies actually improves their work-life balance. Those would be the people who can actually switch off their BlackBerry after 6pm, then.

By Gordon Smith