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UK businesses losing over $49 million a week as employees waste time hunting for mobile phone reception in the workplace to take business calls.

9th February 2015

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Cambridge, UK – February 9th 2015 – Research released today by the leading small cell solution specialist,ip.access, shows that UK businesses are losing $49 (£32.75) million a week, with 43 per cent of employees spending an hour or more searching for reliable mobile phone signals to make work-related calls*.

UK office workers are collectively spending 2.53 million hours a week searching for better mobile coverage**, which comes from61 per cent of company employees claiming to have poor or variable mobile reception at their place of work. Even 50 per cent of telecoms professionals responded that the mobile signal in their offices was inadequate.

The research, which surveyed 2,000 UK office workers at junior and senior levels from varying company sizes also revealed that 62 per cent of employees in the finance sector were suffering from poor or variable mobile phone reception and 59 per cent of government or public service professionals face the same problem.

“There is a fundamental issue here for businesses and mobile operators,” said Gavin Ray, SVP Products & Marketing at ip.access. “It is pretty amazing that in an age where we have fridges that can tell you you’re out of milk; we are still faced with the age-old problem of patchy indoor mobile signal.  Looking at these numbers it’s clearly the new time-thief for business.

“While companies across the UK are employing the latest technology to streamline processes and boost revenue, a reliable mobile signal has become a basic necessity, and the lack of one is having a detrimental effect on the productivity and flexibility of companies’ workforces. This surely feeds into missed revenue and growth opportunities.

“Operators should be addressing the issue with a proportionate degree of urgency, and look to technology, such as small cells, to improve the coverage for businesses and their employees who are wasting precious time pursuing mobile signal,” said Ray.  

The research data also showed that 42% of enterprise users are not aware that there are technologies available that can cure the plight of poor mobile phone signal in their place of work, with only 15 per cent having heard of small cells as a viable solution.

The research implied that mid-sized companies, of 500 people, are losing $4,222.29 (£2,800) a week from employees spending an hour or more hunting for a mobile signal***; a figure that for the first time shows the economic value of solving this problem and a positive reason for operators to build and develop new solutions to return this valuable time to the people they serve.

Notes to the Editor:


* This is based on the predicted number of office workers in the UK (7,699,000) and then the percentage of those who spend more than an hour a week searching for signal (43.35%), which equates to 3,337,517. A total of 75.93% of those surveyed said that they use their mobiles at work, so 75.93% of the workforce who spend more than an hour a week searching for signal results is 2,534,176. The average wage of a worker in the UK is $19.48/hour, so multiply this by 2,534,176 equates to: $49,365,748.48

** The 2.53 million hours figure is simply calculated because of the number of workers that spend an hour or more a week searching for signal at work.

*** This figure is calculated by taking an average mid-sized company of 500 people and then remembering that 43.35% of employees spend more than an hour a week searching for signal, which leaves 216.75 employees searching for signal and then multiplying this number by the average hourly wage $19.48/hour), resulting in: $4,222.29/week

(The research was conducted by OnePoll on behalf of ip.access)

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About ip.access

ip.access develops 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G carrier grade small cell radio solutions.

The company has two primary lines of business; commercial communications networks deployed with service providers, and private networks deployed with system integrators for critical infrastructures, security and surveillance.

Headquartered in the United Kingdom, ip.access has deployed more than two million 2G, 3G and 4G small cells, across hundreds of commercial and private networks worldwide.

Media contacts

Samantha Browning / Rachel Nulty
+44 (0)20 8408 8000

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