Mobile device adoption in the workplace is not yet mature, found a recent survey from Gartner. Although 80 percent of workers surveyed received one or more corporate-issued devices, desktops are still the most popular corporate device among businesses, with more than half of workers receiving corporate-issued desktop PCs.
The survey findings are based on the 2016 Gartner Personal Technologies Study, which was conducted from June to August 2016 among 9,592 respondents in the U.S., the U.K. and Australia.
Thirty-six percent of workers received laptops, including convertible laptops. Adoption of convertible laptops as a corporate-issued device is still very low, but has been gradually increasing. Gartner analysts expect that more employees will receive convertible laptops in the next three years, driven by the Windows 10 refresh that can enhance the user experience with touch-based input. Adding desktops and laptops (including convertible laptops) together, 75 percent of workers will receive at least one PC-type device in mature countries.
In contrast to the high numbers of corporate-issued PCs in the workplace, relatively few workers receive mobile devices. The majority of smartphones used in the workplace are personally owned devices — only 23 percent of employees surveyed are given corporate-issued smartphones.
“The low adoption of corporate-issued mobile devices underlines the fact that large numbers of personally owned mobile devices are used in the workplace,” said Mikako Kitagawa, principal research analyst at Gartner. “In fact, more than half of employees who used smartphones at work rely solely on their personally owned smartphones.”
The usage rate of personally owned tablets lags behind that of personally owned smartphones. Only 21 percent of employees use tablets — regardless of whether they are corporate issued or personally owned.
“In the era of mobility, it comes as something of a surprise that corporate usage of smartphones and tablets is not as high as PCs, even when the use of personally owned devices is taken into account,” said Ms. Kitagawa. “While it’s true that the cost of providing mobile devices can quickly escalate, proper usage of mobile devices can increase productivity, which can easily justify the extra costs.”
When employees are provided with corporate-issued devices, they are generally happy with the devices that they receive. Less than 20 percent of respondents said they were dissatisfied with their employer-provided devices. The satisfaction level is higher with tablets and smartphones compared with desktop and laptops.
“Usage of personally owned devices in the workplace is nothing new, but the survey results confirm that this trend has become a new workplace standard. Two-thirds of survey respondents said that they use a personally owned device or devices for work,” said Ms. Kitagawa. “Smartphones and phablets are the most popular personally owned devices used for work, with 39 percent of employees using them, compared with just 10 percent who are only using corporate-issued smartphones and phablets.”