Why Performance Management Is So Critical with a Mobile Workforce 

Thursday September 15, 2016

With increasing frequency, businesses are creating mobility programs and policies that enable their remote workers to remain productive wherever they may be in the world.

A recent Frost & Sullivan survey, cited by Samsung Insights, found that two-thirds of IT decision-makers working in the government sector said they allow employees to use their smartphones for work-related tasks. At the same time, more than 50 percent are able to use tablets as well.

As a subset of the overall mobile worker population, government agency employees demonstrate a strong push for greater mobility in the modern workplace.

  • Roughly one-fifth of these employees work in satellite offices
  • Almost 25 percent work from home
  • More tellingly, 75 percent of government organizations provide their employees with smartphones

From the private sector to governmental organizations, mobility is becoming a greater focus when creating processes and policies to improve performance – and at the heart of any businesses’ performance is its workforce.

With remote, telecommuting and dispersed workers, one of the most pressing questions is your ability to implement performance management structures and policies that keep your employees connected and engaged.

Why You Need to Rethink Performance Management

A growing number of businesses are coming to the realization that mobility and business performance are intricately linked. In the words of Thomas Friedman, the world is flat. There’s nothing truly separating workers in Chicago with those in Calcutta beyond time zones. We’re all part of an interconnected global business world, making performance management such a key part of the chemistry.

In a recent article for Bloomberg BNA, the performance management equation has already begun to evolve. Many companies have begun to eliminate processes like ratings tools and are instead opting for crowdsourcing feedback. These changes are occurring because workers are dispersed, making outdated management practices ineffective.

When your workforce is centrally located in a specific office space with access to the same technology, it’s easier to track performance on a fairly even playing field. With mobile workers in particular, an employee who doesn’t perform at their expected level, may be hampered by the lack of necessary technology – as opposed to a character deficit.

How to Get the Foundation Right

The very early stages of managing a mobile worker’s performance are key to long-term success. In addition to setting expectations and clearly explaining career pathways, it’s critical that businesses layout the framework for efficiency with an approved list of resources and tools they can access from remote locations.