Due to the development of the first smartphone, the way people communicate on a daily basis has evolved. The workplace reflects this change, as technology has enabled the flexibility and mobility employees now demand when considering ideal workspaces. Cell phones have even surpassed the traditional desk phone as the preferred method for communicating externally. When conducting a recent survey on the tools for communication within the workplace, Zinwave found that over 85 percent of respondents, which included more than 1,000 office workers within the United States, utilize their cell phones on a weekly basis, at a minimum, for external communications, and usage was only slightly lower for internal communications.
The phenomenon goes beyond voice capabilities, however. Smartphones enable workers to access email, which the study found to be the preferred means of external and internal communication while at work. Having access to the internet, applications, and messaging services has solidified mobile devices, such as cell phones and tablets, as a necessity when it comes to driving productivity. For example, 65% of industrial and 62% of healthcare workers utilize work-related data daily for a variety of applications.
Let’s take a closer look at those two examples. Poor coverage can have significant impact on manufacturing productivity and patient care. Reliable connectivity facilitates healthcare IoT technology and changes the way clinicians approach treatment. Healthcare workers have chosen to rely on cellular data for vital functions such as inventory tracking, and monitoring real-time information from medical devices. Industrial workers use data to track inventory as well, and also to access analytical information such as pressure levels and delivery status to improve operations. The need to be constantly connected is clear.
Employees must have the ability to communicate in the manner they choose for companies to remain effective within their respective industries. Eliminating the barrier of poor communication methods increases productivity, as well as raises the level of employee satisfaction by untethering them from their desks. Businesses are taking note of this and it has begun to play a role in every aspect of their business strategy; they want to attract and retain highly productive employees.
The necessity for reliable in-building connectivity has begun to impact the commercial real estate industry as well. Building managers need to consider how to provide the optimal solution for what tenants are now considering the fourth utility behind water, gas, and electricity. By providing infrastructure for reliable in-building connectivity, not only are CRE companies able to attract potential tenants, but they are also able to negotiate longer lease terms, lowering the total cost of ownership. When it comes to leasing, 76% of decision makers rated strong connectivity and reliable cellular coverage as highly important when it comes to choosing a potential office space.
All workforce generations, from Millennials to Baby Boomers, report using their cell phones much more frequently than they did one year ago. From healthcare, to industrial, to commercial real estate, all industries will continue to be impacted by indoor cellular connectivity challenges. How much it affects their bottom line, however, can only be determined by how they respond to the needs of the evolving communication landscape.