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By 5 November 2012 | Categories: sponsored content

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Mobility is a normal part of everyday life. More than half of network devices in 2012 will ship without a wired port, according to Morgan Stanley Market Trends, and the majority of these devices are being brought into the workplace.

According to research commissioned by Avanade, a global business technology solutions and managed services provider, companies are embracing enterprise mobility and consumer technologies to help employees do their jobs in new ways.

Avanade's September 2012 survey of 599 C-level executives and IT decision-makers in 19 countries, shows more than six in ten companies (61%) reporting that the majority of their employees now use private computing devices in the workplace. Over half (54%) report the majority of their employees use smartphones for basic work functions such as reading email, web documents and calendar invitations.

A rise in tablet usage

The research also shows that tablets are quickly being adopted as key tools in a multi-device world. While one-third of companies (33%) report the majority of employees use tablets for simple work tasks, the exact same number of respondents - 33% - report the majority of employees use tablets for advanced business uses such as customer relationship management (CRM), project management, content creation and data analysis.

"What the research shows us is how ingrained tablets have become in the workplace in less than three years since they hit mainstream," said Rudi Greyling, chief technology officer and innovation lead at Avanade South Africa. "Companies are recognising the business value tablets can offer, and creating solutions and enabling access to business systems to capitalise on the opportunity."

Windows 8 - one to watch

The impact of Microsoft's latest operating system is also not to be underestimated. "With the release of Microsoft Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8, there will be a new wave of enterprise-ready mobility solutions entering the workplace as employees increasingly use their personal tablets and smartphones to get their jobs done more effectively."

Furthermore, the introduction of Microsoft Windows 8 with its optimised Metro interface for tablets and touch, with the traditional desktop as backup, will bridge the gap between these devices. The addition of hardware optimised for Windows 8, for example, Microsoft Surface tablets, will give users the power and utility of a PC in a tablet form. Microsoft Windows 8 will usher in new smartphone features and tablet form factors, applications and services to improve business productivity and the user experience.

"To take advantage of the value enterprise mobility brings, companies are redesigning the building blocks of their business," said Greyling. "Avanade's research reveals these leaders are modifying business processes like sales and marketing, and roles inside companies, such as HR staff, to make better use of mobile devices and other consumer technologies. Our work with customers and research studies show early signs that these changes are making an impact on revenues, profits and customer service."

About Avanade

Avanade provides business technology solutions and managed services that connect insight, innovation and expertise in Microsoft technologies to help customers realise results. Its people have helped thousands of organisations in all industries improve business agility, employee productivity, and customer loyalty. Avanade combines the collective business, technical and industry expertise of its worldwide network of experts with the rigor of an industrialised delivery model to provide high quality solutions using proven and emerging technologies with flexible deployment models - on premises, cloud-based or outsourced. Avanade, which is majority owned by Accenture, was founded in 2000 by Accenture LLP and Microsoft Corporation and has 16 000 professionals in more than 20 countries.

For more information on how Avanade can help your company, visit www.avanade.co.za or phone 012-622-4400.

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