Supplying wireless devices benefits employers by providing more productive employees
April 11, 2007 - Outdated beliefs held by some management that wireless devices are a luxury or a privilege are no longer supported by lower airtime rates and the relatively low cost of devices, according to Bill Hughes, principal analyst at In-Stat, a high-tech market research firm. Guyed Tower Construction

In addition, the cost in employee time spent filling out expense reports and lost productivity due to self-restraint in using wireless service amounts to $2 billion each year under a conservative estimate, says Hughes.

Phone is a necessity, not a luxury
The most effective way for an organization to manage its telecommunications resources is to treat wireless the way most organizations treat wireline services-with centralized billing for business lines, reports In-Stat says. Yet, according to their recent survey, only 44% of employers currently use this approach.

"The majority of organizations seek to control costs for wireless services using a variety of methods, including requiring that employees review their phone bills, submit expense reports for business calls, or not to pay for employees' wireless services at all," says Hughes. "There may have been a time when these approaches made sense, but those days are past."

In-Stat found that with efforts to get reimbursed for personal calls, the value of the time employees spend completing wireless phone expense reports exceeds the value of the personal calls they would have made if the phone was company owned.

In-Stat found that when the business covers the cost of mobile devices, there is less time spent on personal calls, approximately 54 minutes per month. The time spent on business-related calls nearly triples, from an average of 77 minutes per month when the employee pays to 216 minutes when the employer pays.