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When Martin Cooper, the man who invented mobile phones, made the first call on his prototype Motorola Dynatac, he never would have imagined that his invention would revolutionise the world in a truly mind-boggling way. Today, the mobile phone whether it’s the iphone 8 or the Galaxy S8, it truly has morphed into a smart device that finds use in almost every aspect of one’s life. You listen to your favourite music, watch videos, take photos and create graphics on your phone. However, this ubiquitous device is taking its toll on productivity in the workplace. Here is all you need to know about mobile phones at the workplace.
Avenue for instant communication
Since your phone is always a heartbeat away from you, the easiest way to raise your attention at work, or anywhere else, is to hit you up via text or call. You may floss over memos or notices on the staff notice board but will never miss a notification on your mobile device. The mobile phone has revolutionised workplace communication, making it easier, convenient and cheaper.
Balancing work and family
Cell phones at the workplace may boost the productivity of workers. You will be more comfortable, and work better when you know that all is well at home. The cell phones enable you to make a quick call home, or send a short text, to inquire about the status of your one-year old, the recuperating mother, or how your spouse is coping with household chores. With this information, you will have no reason not to embark fully on your official responsibilities.
Constant source of distraction
You can’t be doing much at the workplace if you are always checking your phone for texts, emails, messages and social media feed. No one doubts your prowess at multitasking, but your productivity at work will take a bump. You waste precious time that you could have used to upgrade the quality and quantity of your job.
Interruptions in meetings
You keep your smartphone on even in restricted places, such as gas stations, so important meetings won’t be an exception. Since you are constantly in touch with your mobile device, you can’t resist the urge to steal glances at the screen to check news feeds on your social media platforms, as well as respond to that curious text from your loudmouth neighbour. Your commitment to such meetings comes into sharp doubt.
They pose a security loophole at work
Sensitive workplace data and information is nestling somewhere in the recesses of your phone’s memory. Your phone is a hub of both personal and business applications, creating a security loophole should your phone, or the one belonging to your colleague fall into the wrong hands. The loss of these phones would certainly disrupt the working environment as management rush to recover data or brace for possible infringements on organisation data and privacy.
A breach of confidentiality
It is usually impossible to hold confidential conversations on your phone in a public place. It not only creates a company risk but also reduces a serious matter to a trivial one that you can discuss from anywhere. Also, while at home, other parties may get access to your phone and be privy to all the confidential work-related data on your smartphone.
Although mobile phones at the workplace can be essential tools of instant communication and the feel-good-factor among employees, they may result in more harm than good. They distract employees, interrupt crucial meetings and cause accidents at the workplace. While the idea of keeping in touch with your loved ones may sound appealing to you, it may also put the data and information at risk. Banning the cell phone from the workplace may be ridiculous, but employers need to talk to their employees and chart the way forward.