Small companies have finally found a sharper technological edge with which to claw at large corporate competitors and clear the path towards big bigger business success. Where years ago, small companies and start-ups capitalized on the new found affordability of internet-based VoIP systems, the ongoing trend now has veered towards mobile device use as business tools. More and more employees and business owners are finding themselves becoming more efficient in their work processes with the use of mobile devices such as smartphones, notebooks and tablets.
The rising trend is most likely to continue as workers begin to bask in the conveniences such devices offer in versatile business situations such as those prevalent among mobile employees. Going about one’s business tasks and performing the usual chores beyond the confines of the conventional indoor office, after all, used to be more difficult to manage given such working conditions.
With mobile devices becoming more sophisticated to match the features and functions usually found in desktop computers and IP phones in workplaces, employee telecom tool preferences have began to be affected by mobility factors. Many small business owners who, like most of their peers, are usually hands-on company leaders also share the awareness towards such options. These are enterprising company owners who prefer to take the lead over just barking orders at subordinates.
Small companies and start-ups have also become aware of business options that are possible and operable within an online technology premise. Those that conveniently find operational compatibility with VoIP phone services that further extend access and reach between the company and its customers; and its employees with coworkers. Company owners and employees are thus opening themselves more to the following options like the ones below:
• Business productivity apps. Employees typing out necessary financial reports, transactional documents, price quotations, and the like in spreadhseet form or simple letters happen everyday. Mobile device integration apps for making these transmittable and portable within the VoIP like Box, Dropbox or CloudOn can be downloaded for free online or bought as premium business apps.
• VoIP features for mobile apps. VoIP services extend to mobile devices via free software and can receive call management feature benefits like call routing, forwarding, online fax and voicemail. The same features are also offered virtually in services like Ringcentral virtual office set-ups.
IT infra issues
Information from a recent survey done by CDW, an Illinois-based tech company, shows that small businesses have become more aware of the edge they enjoy against their bigger competitors by going mobile. Employees working for such companies also see themselves as becoming more efficient using smartphones, notebooks and tablets as business tools. In fact, the survey further shows that this rise in mobile device use has also led to the subsequent increase in the need for the following:
• More mobile device apps to boost business productivity.
• More adequate security policies to address personal mobile device use by employees.
• Appropriate mobile device use policies to manage BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) situations in companies, no matter the size.
• Mobile device compatibility with office printers, presentation equipment, and the like.
Although there are hundreds of business productivity apps for mobile devices available to users either as free or paid apps downloadable online, it is only a matter of compatibility that users need to be made aware of. Smartphone and tablet tech choices are predominantly between iOS, Windows and Android. Printing documents or viewing presentations of various file types accessed from mobile devices from differing technologies will surely run into compatibility problems with office desktop printers and projecting equipment. IT infrastructure firewalls can also hamper such tasks.
Small companies, however, need to be more aware of corporate information security issues. Mobile devices personally owned by employees interacting with company IT infrastructure also entertains the possibility of sensitive company information being leaked out either by accident or by dishonesty. The CDW survey results released this October also raise this concern because it currently finds no adequate security or management policies in companies for employee-owned mobile devices interacting with company IT infrastructure. But such challenges notwithstanding, mobile devices will eventually decide who wins big in business.