Most councils opt for mobile working

Four-fifths of local authorities are either implementing or planning a mobile technology strategy, new research has found.

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Four-fifths of local authorities are either implementing or planning a mobile technology strategy, new research has found.

A survey of 93 local authorities found that only 20% had no plans for a mobile strategy in the immediate future, while a third of those surveyed were planning a strategy and the remainder already putting mobile technologies into practice.

Of the authorities that have already implemented mobile working, more than six out of 10 said it had improved staff working practices, while 57% said it had reduced costs.

Just over half of authorities that have introduced mobile working said they had seen significant improvements to customer service, the research by mobile applications specialist Consilium Technologies found.

The reluctance of staff to adopt mobile working is still a key barrier, the survey found, with 40% citing this as a difficulty. The same proportion of respondents said cost was also a problem, while 31% raised support issues as a barrier to introducing mobile working.

Gareth Tolerton, chief technology officer at Consilium Technologies, said employees’ reluctance to adopt the new technology could be overcome if the change was managed well.

"Projects must involve not only management but also the end-user throughout the planning and implementation process," he said. This would "ensure frontline staff are empowered and enthused by any changes to working practices".

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