In a "Work Wherever" Culture, Mobile Data Security Remains Top Priority

By Jessica Binns, Contributing Editor — July 02, 2012

Good Technology's latest mobile device usage survey finds that the average American puts in more than a month and a half of overtime a year – just by answering calls and emails at home.

In a survey of U.S. working adults sponsored by Good Technology, more than 80 percent of report that they continue working after they have left the office - for an average of seven extra hours each week – almost another full day of work. That's a total of close to 30 hours a month or 365 extra hours every year. They're also using their mobile phones to blend their work and personal lives in ways never seen before.

While 60 percent do it simply to stay organized, almost half feel they have no choice because their customers demand quick responses. Thirty-one percent of respondents admit to continuing to work at home because they find it hard to "switch off." Half of Americans can't even put their phones down while in bed, as they read or respond to work emails after climbing under the covers.

This overtime has become so commonplace that only a quarter of the 1,000 workers polled said it caused an occasional disagreement with their partner. In what points to changing attitudes to mobile work, well over half surveyed reported no arguments whatsoever from their spouse or significant other over answering email or making work calls at home.

John Herrema, senior vice president of corporate strategy for Good Technology, says, "In today's 'always on' mobile environment, secure access to corporate email and apps is a 'must have' versus a 'nice to have' for nearly all companies. While most of our customers believe their employees do work more hours as a result of this accessibility, they also appreciate and welcome the enhanced work-life balance that comes when employees have more freedom and choice to get work done whenever and wherever they need to — whether that's in the office, on the road, or while sitting in the stands at a child's baseball game.

"When it comes to supporting a 'bring your own device' environment, it's important to take an approach that ensures data security without compromising the employee's privacy or personal experiences," Herrema continues. "By shifting their management focus from 'devices' to 'apps' and 'data', enterprises can allow employees to get work done on the go whenever they want, and still keep personal information private, separate and safe."

The study also revealed:

68 percent of people check their work emails before 8 a.m.
The average American first checks their phone around 7:09 a.m.
50 percent check their work email while still in bed
The work day is growing – 40 percent still do work email after 10 p.m.
69 percent will not go to sleep without checking their work email
57 percent check work emails on family outings
38 percent routinely check work emails while at the dinner table

The survey of 1,000 US adults was conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Good Technology between May 18-28, 2012.

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