More feds use mobile devices for work than expected

Nearly half of federal IT workers recently surveyed use their mobile devices daily for work-related functions, according to a new poll.

The survey of 200 federal IT workers, released by communications firm Bluetext, was conducted by research firm Fabrizio, Ward and Associates in December 2011. The findings reveal that 45 percent of federal IT employees are using mobile devices for work on an everyday basis.

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“The fact that federal IT workers are getting 45 percent on daily use of mobile devices was far more than we expected,” said Don Goldberg, a partner with Bluetext. “That to me suggests that federal IT workers are comfortable with security issues they have to deal with.”

The top three most commonly used applications are email (93 percent), project management tools (36 percent) and social media (20 percent), with Facebook being the overwhelming favorite. Thirteen percent said they use VoIP apps.

Most (68 percent) of those who use social media apps for work purposes turn to  Facebook, while 21 percent use Twitter, 16 percent choose Google+ and 11 percent pick LinkedIn. Only 3 percent indicated they use YouTube, and the same number opt for MySpace.

2012 could become the year when mobile devices become the norm and not the exception for federal employees who use them for work purposes, Goldberg said. The survey results indicate that “being locked to a desk or a PC is going to less and less important to federal workers,” he added.

“Not only do they have access where they are, when they want it, but a lot of federal workers have to be mobile and be out in the field inspecting something,” Goldberg said. “They’re just not going to be chained to a desk that often.”

About the Author

Camille Tuutti is a former FCW staff writer who covered federal oversight and the workforce.


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