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Device trends and employee trends – where the two collide

Your market update – Smartphone global shipments for Q1 2021 are 27% above the same time last year.    That in new data from Canalys.      Apple earnings are out, they had a massive 54% revenue gain year over year.   That’s about the same as Google and Microsoft combined.   Services for the company, their second largest business, is up 21%, and they now have more than 600 million paid subscribers across their offerings.       And the iPhone, their biggest business, saw revenues grow 60%, and unit sales around 50% year over year.

Gartner tells us employees spent 11% more time on laptops, smartphones and tablets in 2020.    A bigger deal – more than half say they use personally obtained apps or web services for collaboration, and 55% use personally owned devices for work some of the time.  

Employees also more stressed – six in ten respondents to a Unify Square survey say their stress levels are up working remotely, and 54% if the workforce describes themselves as exhausted, per a survey by Blind.

Forty-three percent of respondents to  a ClickUp survey  have been frustrated by the number of tech tools and apps they use for work; 42% say their company is stuck in the “dark ages” when it comes to adopting new technology tools or apps. 

Managers are also experiencing the squeeze.   A survey by meQuilibrium found 22% of managers have low resilience and are at high risk for burnout and PTSD, have taken on 1.7x more work during the pandemic than non-managers, and saw a decrease in motivation three times higher than non-managers

Why do we care?

I like contrasting the data here – device proliferation and market growth… and the cost on people.    Apple is huge, and their services play is no joke.   

Let’s assume their growth in iPhones, plus smart phones in general, is a surge in personal devices.    The dispersion of work outside the four walls of traditional offices is jetfuel, and should be thought of carefully by those in IT services and those dealing with security.  

And, this mode of work is causing pressure – a lot of it.    Offering solutions that balance these conflicting forces is where the value is.