Managers resisting mobile workers

IT analyst firm Gartner Inc. predicted at the end of last year that: “The notion of the office as a fixed location [will] give way to a situation where ‘office’ is just the act of paying attention to work through always-on access.” But a more recent survey of HR managers reveals that most companies still don’t trust their staff to work on the move.

The survey, carried out by business and IT consulting firm LogicaCMG PLC, found that 45 per cent of respondents were concerned about employees’ self discipline while out of the office. This fear stemmed from the fact that just under half had no way of monitoring mobile workers.

Of those companies that do allow mobile working, most rely on old-fashioned monitoring methods like logging calls and Internet use or requiring a written report.

The study revealed that while firms trained staff how to use the technology that enables them to work on the move, only 20 per cent of training covered effective communication techniques and a mere16 per cent taught time management.