How to Stay Connected with On-Field Workers Effectively
The next 5 years will see a lot of new IT initiatives being introduced for these group of field workers. Up to now, they have been excluded in the information economy because desktop IT was not able to to help them work on the go.
What has changed is the confluence of cheap hardware, fast data networks and ability to bring legacy enterprise applications to mobile. Companies with field workers are now adopting enterprise mobility like never before.
Enabling these workers is the largest IT opportunity of the next 5 years. Field workers make up 60% of the workforce in Asia and as education and work becomes more white collared, they will need suitable communication and collaboration tools to get their work done.
When smartphones are distributed to employees, there is an opportunity to significantly improve how communication is currently being conducted and gain instant productivity upgrades.
Communication is the key killer app for any smartphones and suitable communication tools help workers handle exceptions and problem solve together with their managers in the office.
The most common communication tool that field workers currently use is the phone call. They do not text because most are not comfortable with typing or reading and being on the go also makes it hard to type.
This is however inefficient. A managers usually is in charge of 10 to 20 workers and there are a lot of missed calls while they are attending to one worker at a time.
In office work, we are enabled by Instant Messaging tools like slack and skype to multi task. However imagine if you do not have a keyboard, how would you communicate?
That is why we have purposed built a smart communicator for field workers. It’s key feature is Instant Voicemail.
Instant Voicemail is like a Instant Messaging but instead of using your hands, you use your voice
Workers can talk just by pressing a button on our Smart Communicator. What they say is instantly heard to their co-worker or even a whole group. No typing or fiddling with the screen required.
Instant Voicemail brings the best of instant messaging which is that you can have multiple conversations with different people at the same time. For the business, this increases the management ratio where a manager can handle even more workers and problems are resolved faster because the manager can talk to multiple people at the same time.
The other smart feature is being able to replay messages. Messages are stored on the phone for replay. This means workers can finish what there are doing without interruption and do not have rush to hear the incoming message. The managers also quickly learn that they can skip the setup portion where they are trying to get the attention of the person and just say what they want because Instant voicemail works instantly but is also repayable if the person misses it on the first go.
This sounds like such a good idea. Surely these must be companies who have done it before.
Instant Voice is not a new concept. Some of ours competitors started 2 years ago. We have actually deployed one of the leading world class apps and seen first hand the problem that needs to be solved for the solution to have high user retention.
The problem with smartphone apps is that they limit themselves to a software only scope.
When you use these apps, the user experience of instant voice is not instant at at.
that is because you have a 4 step process to unlock the phone, find the app, find the person that you want to talk to then finally start a message. that takes way too long a communication method proclaiming to be instant.
On our smart communicator. we have compressed all these steps into one press of a button. Without looking at the screen you are able to send and reply instantly. This keeps the conversation fluid and resolves the key barrier to the adoption of instant voice.
Our understanding of what field workers require is our competitive advantage and I would like you show you one last feature.
Imagine you are the worker and you need an address from your manager. So you ping you manager. Your manager then replies using text as it is more suitable for specific information. You can read the text but you can also hear the content even while walking around trying to find the place. No looking at your screen required.