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More than half of Irish workforce will work away from their desk by 2016

Mobile workers will represent 57 per cent of the total working population by 2016 it is estimated.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny doing a bit of mobile working of his own as he arrives at government buildings yesterday.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny doing a bit of mobile working of his own as he arrives at government buildings yesterday.
Image: Photocall Ireland

WELL OVER HALF of the Irish workforce will be mobile workers by 2016 according to a new executive brief produced by an international market analyst.

An International Data Corporation (IDC) brief sponsored by the mobile phone company O2 has found that mobile workers will represent 57 per cent of the total working population or around 1.4 million people in four years time.

This is up from 48 per cent in 2011 with the expectation that the smartphone market will grow considerably this year with 1.3 million units overtaking so-called ‘legacy’ mobile phones.

The executive brief predicts that smartphones such as Google’s Android, Apple’s iPhone and RIM’s Blackberry will represent 88 per cent of all units shipped in the mobile device market or around 2.2 million devices by 2016.

“Over the last decade, we have seen rapid changes both in technology and working patterns,” Alan Brown, the business director at Telefónica Ireland, which operates O2, said.

“One of the results is that desk-bound workers with fixed PCs are becoming less of a norm, while mobile working grows and grows. This presents both a challenge and an opportunity for companies and their IT managers.”

O2 is currently launching what they’re calling an enterprise mobility programme which is designed to help organisations adjust to mobile working by offering them consultancy and technical expertise.

Brown continued: “O2′s enterprise mobility strategy, which we call ‘Joined up People’, offers a combination of consultancy, communications products, security capabilities and technical expertise to help them meet that challenge.”

IDC’s Nicholas McQuire said that employers and IT directors should not fear technological developments and must instead “make the most of such dynamic transformation”.

The research by IDC also identified the top three challenges that were identified in supporting the mobile workforce.

They included security, either of the corporate network (cited by 31 per cent) or protecting data on the device itself (29 per cent); cost (41 per cent) and management of data and devices (37 per cent).

Read: Workers in Ireland hate laziness, moodiness and volume of co-workers – study

Read: 66 per cent of Irish commuters work overtime – impacting their personal lives, says survey

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