Corporate Mobile Applications Leave Employees Unsatisfied

Almost 70 percent of employees use personally owned smartphones and tablets in the workplace, a trend that is only going to continue.

The majority (58 percent) of employees at midsize to large businesses abandon the corporate mobile apps they should be using for work-related tasks on their smartphones and tablets, according to a survey of 1,000 U.S. business employees conducted by ResearchNow and commissioned by mobile engagement provider Mobiquity.

Instead, the report revealed that 64 percent of employees "go rogue," freely downloading apps of their own choice from the public app stores to use at work and putting corporate security at risk.

Just over a quarter (26 percent) of smartphone users and almost 20 percent of tablet users report that they "stick with" the corporate mobile app, but their productivity suffers as a consequence.

"It's clear that employee satisfaction with corporate mobile apps is falling short," Scott Snyder, chief strategy officer at Mobiquity, said in a statement. "To ensure greater app engagement—and reduce the privacy and security risks associated with rogue app usage—enterprises must adopt the same best practices as they do for customer-facing apps. Identifying use cases and user personas is key to designing rich, mobile app experiences that keep employees engaged and productive."

According to the study, 43 percent of smartphone users and 41 percent of tablet users say they are not impressed with the corporate mobile apps they are expected to use. Most often they abandon them, returning to their desktop to complete their work, the report indicated.

With only 24 percent of businesses enforcing a formal bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy, the study found that IT departments are using varying tactics to try to limit employees downloading and using apps of their choice for work.

Twenty percent preload apps onto employees' mobile devices, while 9 percent have an enterprise app store and mandate that apps must be used on mobile devices and 13 percent restrict which apps can be used on personally owned smartphones and tablets in the workplace.

A quarter said they block all or some personal apps on company-owned smartphones. According to the study, almost 70 percent of employees currently use personally owned smartphones and tablets in the workplace, a trend that is only going to continue.

"Once CIOs allow employees to bring their own devices, they open the door to this outflow of unprotected company data, and there is no way to enforce or secure it," Ty Rollin, Mobiquity's chief technology officer, said in a statement. "But implementing a BYOD policy can actually help employees become part of the solution, making them the 'security guards' of corporate data."