Three ways mobile is changing public sector working

There is a revolution happening in the public sector. Instead of being office-based and bound to the 9-5, the government workforce is becoming more flexible and embracing the trend for mobile working. Public sector bodies both national and local are pushing for greater adoption of mobile technology amongst staff, with some councils operating between two and five thousand devices.

There are some key advancements in mobile technology that are powering this revolution and are enhancing the productivity and cost efficiency of the public sector workforce.

Better convergence

A fully unified communications system, in which all voice, data and mobile solutions come under one provider, can bring significant advantages to public sector organisations. With a converged system, the mobile can become a fully functioning office tool. Whether the user is in the car, at home or at his or her desk, they can be reached on a single number. What’s more, features like intelligent call routing can be administered through an online app, rather than with a call to the supplier.

Convergence also simplifies the entire communications infrastructure for the organisation, with one bill and one provider. This also offers business continuity measures built in as standard, so if there’s a power cut in the office for example, the phone system doesn’t have to go down with it.

For many IT Directors within the public sector, their telecoms journey from A to B can be can be endlessly disrupted by external factors. The job of finding a solution to meet their IT needs is becoming harder and harder.

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Better connectivity

A missed call for a public sector organisation could lead to reputational damage, the failure to provide essential services, or operational inefficiency.

So as the public sector transitions to more flexible, mobile ways of working, connectivity increases in importance. Unfortunately, we must acknowledge the reality that no single provider is ever likely to offer absolute coverage. When you have multiple employees travelling between coverage zones, this is not ideal.

However, there is an alternative to paying for multiple providers and managing multiple contracts for employee business mobile phone usage. Solutions such as Gamma MultiNet® now give users access to more than one UK mobile network from a single SIM, providing better mobile coverage than a single mobile network.

Better transparency

There is greater scrutiny than ever on public sector finances. Managing the data usage of employees in a transparent fashion is becoming a greater necessity.

Generally speaking, employees will use the data on their company phone responsibly. Yet many government organisations will have experienced and unexpectedly large data bill from their staff. When you consider that many use their data for emails, texts, calls, social media, and video streaming, it’s easy to see where the costs stack up.

As a preventative measure, providers are offering new mobile solutions that include data alerts sent directly to the employer and the employee via email or text. As a result, everyone is aware of the level of data usage and whether the limit is about to be reached. Employees are given the opportunity to turn off data, and employers can see how much data is being used, authorising additional data spend if necessary. So employees can still use the essential apps and features they need to do their job, without having to worry about running up a surprisingly large bill.

These are just three ways in which advancements in mobile technology can help public sector organisations work more efficiently. It is now the responsibility of these organisations to invest in the mobile solutions that will drive greater productivity and cost-efficiency.

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1 June 2016 | Sam Winterbottom

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The views in this article are the personal views of the author and are not necessarily endorsed by Gamma.