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Understanding the mobile workforce toolbox

Posted by Chad O'Connor  November 25, 2013 11:00 AM

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In the not-so-distant past, the phrase “mobile workforce” referred to salespeople and consultants who traveled every week and rarely spent time at a desk. These were the early adopters of cell phones and groundbreaking personal digital assistants (PDAs) (remember those?) like the Palm Pilot.

Today, the definition of mobile workforce has shifted dramatically, driven largely by the availability of technology that allows most professionals to be just as productive and responsive out of the office as they are in it.

Wireless Networks: The Foundation for Faster Personal Mobile Productivity
4G LTE is up to 10 times faster than 3G, meaning that unlike a few years ago, people on a wireless network can access the cloud in real-time, downloading and uploading files at incredible speeds.

I can’t remember when I last heard anyone say “I’ll get that presentation/document/contract to you when I get back to my desk.” 4G LTE wireless networks enable professionals with compatible mobile devices to send and receive very large data files from the sidewalk or airport just as quickly and effectively as from their office.

As a result, we’re all relying more and more on our smartphones and tablets to stay connected and using mobility to be more dynamic in the way we work – visiting customers and partners, networking and making sales calls, and, yes, even running to the dry cleaner or the dentist, all the while being as responsive and productive on email and by phone as if we were at our desk.

Mobile Productivity: Helping to Drive Small Business Growth
Small businesses are the engine of our economy. The folks driving these new and growing companies understand that to build a thriving workforce, there has to be flexibility for the new breed of professionals that demands it. In fact, nearly 90 percent of business owners say that the ability for employees to work remotely at any time is a top concern, according to research conducted by cloud and communication service provider Cbeyond.

The Cloud: Making Mobile Faster
Back at the turn of the century (the year 2000!), people worked remotely too. But they did it with flash drives, disk drives and briefcases full of files; dialing in to their VPN to access a shared server back at the office or emailing documents back and forth with colleagues. Today, the cloud – public or private – makes carrying all of that physical data unnecessary, and today’s lightning fast 4G LTE wireless networks provide a reliable onramp to the cloud, even if remote workers aren’t on Wi-Fi. Using apps like Office Mobile and Evernote Business, business professionals can sync devices with office laptops and PCs to collaborate through the cloud.

All in all, our “mobile workforce” has come a long way. With the continued innovation of mobile technology, businesses are becoming more agile, flexible and productive than ever.

Michael Murphy serves as public relations manager for Verizon Wireless across the six states of New England. Follow him on Twitter @VZWMike.

This blog is not written or edited by or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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