By Daniel Oduro-Mensah
It is very interesting to know that we have the whole world in our palms. We can now send information easily, check up on friends outside our confines and be abreast of what is happening in other parts of the world. How awesome to guess the answer? It is a simple technology called the mobile phone. The inception of mobile phone usage has undesirably brought countless benefits to us in our various capacities we serve. However, its usage in our working environment during working hours could have considerable impact be it positive or negative to productivity.
Mobile phones help to transact businesses with customers using less effort. Gone were the days, when letters would have to be written with the purchase of telegraph to convey information to customers and largely people. They help bridge communication gap between employees and customers. Any customer seeking to get information will just have to pick up their mobile phone and dial a particular office line. If a customer is seeking to replace goods purchased or buy extra goods, the mobile phone becomes the popular resort to connect with his or her manufacturer or distributor.
Additionally, the use of telephony helps facilitate easy communication among employees and their bosses. Whenever an employee at the sixth floor of a storey building wants to convey an information to a colleague at the first floor, the means of communication is the mobile phone or the telephone. Staff meetings, informal messages, voice calls and online meetings are done through the use of mobile phones. Again, various departments within an organisation are connected through where various numbers are provided. So in case, employees or customers wants to get an information from a particular department, a call is sent through to connect with employees from that department.
Also, the telephony helps customers to address their complaints to their business partners. A business entity that seeks to improve upon its products will create avenues to connect with customers. One of the avenues is, a company’s website that has reserved portions for taking in complaints from customers. A customer who is not satisfied with a product of a particular company will have the chance to vent his or her spleen on the company’s website for prompt response. Also, customers may subscribe to a company’s news portal to be current about issues happening in a company they transact businesses with.
For MTN Mobile Money usually sends performance assessment to their customers about the nature of their e-cash transfer business and their response. However, the sudden increase of mobile phone usage within the working environment has had negative impact affecting productivity. One of these is, many employees having informal chats when they have a backlog of work to clear. Many a time, employees can be found having social media messages like WhatsApp, facebook, Instagram, doing ‘unnecessary calls’, playing games, watching movies, listening to songs and many more.
Last but not the least, the sound produced from the telephones during working hours is disruptive. An employee making a business call could easily be distracted when a colleague’s phone rings noisily. It therefore draws attention of other workers who would have to leave their work and know the owner of noisy phone. A serious board meeting could be interrupted when a phone rings. This diverts the attention of the board members which wastes time.
Mobile phones and other communication devices should be used solely to rake in profits for a business and stiffer punishments should be meted out to employees who use the handy technology for unrelated purposes.
The Writer is a Student Journalist
Ghana Institute of Journalism.