The use of smartphone apps by enterprise employees is not an isolated or passing trend.  Overall, the rising app culture is seen as good news, but how do you avoid the pitfalls and what does the phenomenon presage for the future of work?

Challenging the conventional workplace

Consumerization of corporate IT is having a profound impact on workplace culture and business models. Mobile device usage is blurring conventional boundaries and “work/life balance” is morphing into “work/life integration”.  Employees are energized by greater freedom and flexibility while enterprises are rewarded with efficiencies and enhanced services.

While this new app culture brings security risks, privacy issues and employee productivity concerns to address, by and large, it’s regarded as a positive shift.  In fact, according to a recent study by the Economist Intelligence Unit, four out of five organizations believe app culture will have a net positive effect on their business.

 

See how companies can mobilize their working practices

Perception becomes reality

However, app culture adoption is far from uniform: the attitudes and beliefs of early adopters, followers and restrictors are distinctly different.  The EIU found that those with experience under their belt and formal policies and incentives were overwhelmingly positive, while naysayers were almost self-fulfilling in their pessimism.  There are clear attitudinal differences across geographic location, company size and vertical – such as surprising conservatism among some of the industries that potentially stand to gain the most from an app culture.

It’s fair to say that the age of instant and virtual collaboration is upon us and there’s no turning back. Mobility is seen as a key driver of innovation, and broader inputs and greater transparency should lead to sounder, more evidence-based decisions.

To find out more about the corporate app culture and what it could mean for your business, download the full report from the Economist Intelligence Unit:

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The app culture ushered into the corporate workplace by application-rich consumer devices is having a profound effect. It is putting massive amounts of information in the hands of employees and allowing them to connect and collaborate with one another in ways that dramatically shrink the organisational network. It is fuelling unprecedented bottom-up innovation and empowerment, providing decision-makers with new, broad-based and intuitive data inputs, and transforming the way managers oversee, support and motivate employees. It is helping large multinational corporations to think and act smaller, nimbler and with a more entrepreneurial spirit. This transformation of corporate culture is far from over. In fact, what we are seeing today may be just the tip of the iceberg...