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on July 02, 2019 Employee Engagement Company Culture

Do Your Hourly Employees Have a Smartphone?

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It can be easy to justify not engaging in certain investments in your workplace, such as an employee app, when you believe that a significant portion of your staff do not even own a smartphone. Many leaders in larger organizations seem to be under the impression that their hourly or frontline employees don't personally own these devices.

However, that is simply not true. Employees in all positions and from all walks of life are becoming more and more likely to own an Android or iOS smartphone - and the recent studies and statistics help prove the case: 

The U.S. Is a Leader In Smartphones

It is hard to deny that smartphones are everywhere in this country.  By simply walking down one block, it seems you are guaranteed to see several people using one. What may be surprising to learn is that the Americans are even more likely than people of other countries to own these devices. 

In fact, the average smartphone ownership for countries with advanced economies sits at about 76 percent, but the U.S has an ownership rate of about 81 percent.

While a difference of five percent might not seem like a ton, it translates to almost 16.5 million additional people. 

Income Does Not Affect Smartphone Ownership

Another reason why executive leaders tend to think that their hourly employees may not have smartphones is because hourly/frontline employees tend to belong to lower income households. It stands to reason that lower income households would not own some of the pricier electronics.

However, according to recent data, household income appears to have very little or even no effect on whether or not people own smartphones. 

A big reason for this is due to the rise of cost effective prepaid cell phone plans. It is easy to walk into any electronics store and walk out a few minutes later with a brand new phone that is operating on a plan that costs only $20-25 a month. Even for those from lower income households, it is a small price to pay in order to access all the additional benefits of having a personal device. 

Older Generations Are Joining the Smartphone Movement

It is not just younger employees who own smartphones anymore. More and more older employees are starting to upgrade in order to keep up with the developing technology-centric business world. 

The number of adults over the age of 50 that own smartphones skyrocketed in recent years, going from 53 percent in 2015 to 67 percent in 2018.

This goes to show that even if a company’s employee base is largely tenured, they more than likely own a smartphone. 

Understanding what your employees and are capable of doing is important to maximizing communication and efficiency in the workplace. Contact us today to find out what else your company can learn to improve your workplace productivity. 

Liang Deng

Business Development Analyst

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