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A new report from iPass, a commercial Wi-Fi network service provider, indicates that the combination of BYOD policies and Wi-Fi access results in productive mobile workforces.
In a survey of 1,150 mobile enterprise employees, the company discovered that 70 percent of mobile workers adopt their company's bring your own device (BYOD) policies. For some, BYOD is a must.
Thirty-five percent said that a company's BYOD policy can influence their decisions about accepting a job. Seventy percent of survey takers said that they were allowed to use their personal mobile devices to conduct work.
Since BYOD offers employees the freedom to work on the devices of their choosing, putting in longer hours is becoming commonplace. iPass found that mobile workers in North America worked 50 hours per week on average, beating out workers in Asia Pacific (48 hours) and Europe (47 hours).
In total, 51 percent of respondents reported that they work 50 or more hours per week. A significant minority, 16 percent, work 60 or more hours per week.
However, an iPhone or Android tablet is only as good as the network that it's connected to. iPass's data indicates that weak or inconsistent Wi-Fi coverage can bring a productive streak to a grinding halt.
Forty-one of those polled said that a lack of a suitable Wi-Fi signal puts them out of commission at least 10 percent of the workday. According to iPass, that adds up "to 251 lost hours, or more than one month of lost productivity, per year per worker." Eighteen percent claimed that they are unproductive for at least 25 percent of their day due to a lack of Wi-Fi.
For iPass CEO Evan Kaplan, the evidence is clear. BYOD and Wi-Fi are critical for productive work environments.
"It's increasingly clear that forward-thinking IT departments are capable of dramatically enhancing employee productivity by arming workers with smartphones, tablets and connectivity plans when traveling or working remotely. Although BYOD and Wi-Fi aren't everywhere, this survey indicates that mobile workers want access to reliable, cost-effective connectivity whenever and wherever they need to work," stated Kaplan in a statement.
The study also revealed that some workers are willing to part with considerable sums of money to connect to the Internet. Fifty-nine percent of respondents admitted to paying more than $20 for one-time use of Wi-Fi while 24 percent said they paid $30 or more. Seventy-one percent said that they research Wi-Fi hotspot availability before embarking on travel.
Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.