Market musings

Is Mobile Really Delivering Productivity for Small Business?

by Sasha Viasasha
January 11, 2018

Mobile phones can be powerful tools for small businesses. Like all powerful tools, they require special handling to make them secure and productive. Mobile phones improve productivity when they make it possible for managers to reach employees -- and for employees to do their work -- away from the office. However, mobile phones can also hurt productivity when managers don't have updated employee contact numbers, can't access data stored on personal phones and don't have an easy way to manage calls across distributed teams. 

There's no doubt that mobile is the future of work. All over the world, workers are turning to mobile for ease of use and capabilities that you can’t get anywhere else. 64% of employees saw significant efficiency improvements from using mobile devices for work tasks, in an Asia-Pacific study by VMWare. That includes workers in Australia, Singapore, India, China and Japan.

Similarly, 61% said that they were happier with their jobs but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are more productive. For example, when employees use their own mobile phones for business calls, all of the information originating from the call, including notes and customer contact info, can be lost or misused. If a customer gets used to calling an employee’s mobile number instead of the company line, there’s no way for the company to keep track of what was said or which problems need attention.

In terms of security, there are two factors to keep in mind. Companies risk losing control of their own data on a private mobile phones, while employees risk cyberattacks by exposing their private numbers. Phone number identity theft is a growing global threat, with 161,000 mobile phone accounts taken over in the past year. That’s nearly doubled from the year before, according to Javelin Strategy & Research. Employees need a better way to mask their private numbers behind a secure business phone number. Customers experience also improves when a call can be answered by a team of employees instead of getting lost in voicemail.

Another big productivity killer arises when the office manager has to walk around looking for someone to take a call on their smartphone, instead of just transferring the call across a professional phone network. The widespread use of mobile devices often makes employee directories obsolete, which only results in frustrated customers who have to leave messages and hope for a call back.

The key to productivity

To realize productivity improvements from the use of mobile devices, small businesses need to link together employee phones into a virtual PBX. Employees need a way to just talk to other team members without wasting valuable time

That way, when a customer or prospect calls, an AI-based attendant can auto-route the call to the right person or team. Employees in the field need the ability to transfer calls to team members on the fly. These team members should be able to talk to each other and resolve problems as much as possible without worrying about racking up a massive phone bill.

Some online voice over IP (VoIP) systems try to address these problems but they use up the employee’s expensive data packages. The cost and availability of communications should never get in the way of problem-solving.

A mobile communications center

Spoke Phone is a global mobile network that brings productivity to BYOD. Small businesses at the growth stage need a reliable business phone system that does just a few things very well, such as :

  • Assigns a central phone number for the business that rings a group of team members.
  • Provides direct dial in (DDI) numbers with local numbers in 53 countries.
  • Keeps a call log so office managers know who needs a call back by when
  • Defaults to a professional, multilingual AI assistant that can direct callers to the right person
  • Keeps a dynamic company directory updated in real time so managers can reach anyone, anywhere, anytime.
  • Delivers excellence in a voice quality, not the echoes, buzzes and dropped calls that still plague VoIP.
  • Uses the employees' unlimited talk minutes instead of expensive data packages
  • Is extremely affordable for cash-conscious, growth-oriented companies.
  • Can be installed in a few minutes and maintained without any help from technical talent.
  • Simplifies conference calling and one touch transfers.
  • Can keep notes during the call, then transcribe them and share them with team members.
  • Allows unlimited free calling between team members, even internationally

All of those features and more are packed into Spoke Phone's  virtual PBX, turning employee mobile phones into a next-generation business phone network for the global mobile future.

Spoke uses advanced analytics and AI to transform the telecom experience -- helping business owners and office managers get more calls made and more calls answered. We can see that the future of work is 100% mobile and Spoke can be the bridge that takes you there. To learn more about Spoke and the next generation voice UX, sign up for an interactive demo. Mobility and productivity belong together.  All they need is a way to talk to each other.

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