Tablets can be a lot of fun for everyday consumers, but they also have the potential to be valuable workflow tools for business users.
In 2013, Forrester Research principal analyst J. P. Gownder predicted that tablets "will play an increasingly critical role at work", and if recent studies are anything to go by, it would appear he was correct.
A survey conducted by Tech Pro Research in 2014 found that more than half (59 per cent) of employers around the globe supported tablets in the workplace. Twenty-five per cent said they didn't have a tablet policy, while only 5 per cent were specifically forbidding the use of tablets.
Organisations that cater to tablet use are so convinced of their value that they are specifically investing in these devices - 45 per cent of tablet-friendly businesses in the survey said they purchased tablets within the organisation and provided them to employees.
If you are a business leader looking for an innovative way to boost productivity, a tablet policy could be the answer.
Regardless of whether you invest specifically in tablets for your employees, or implement a BYOD policy that allows individuals to bring their own tablets from home, encouraging the use of these tablets in the workplace can be hugely beneficial.
With that in mind, here are a few tips and ideas for implementing a tablet in your workspace.
Conduct sleeker presentations
Relying on heavy, clunky laptops for presentations can be a hassle. Although these devices are excellent for putting together slideshows and reports, they are often difficult to quickly set up and use as a presentation tool.
After creating a presentation, employees can transfer it to a tablet which can be easily carried between offices or conference rooms. From there, the tablet can be connected with whatever display tools are available to create a sleek, professional presentation experience.
Reduce print costs
Printing documents and leaflets everyday can be a significant expense. Although having this information on hand may be essential during presentations and meetings, is it really worth the expense of paper and printing toner?
Encourage your employees to send reading material in a digital format, which can be accessed via individual tablets as necessary. Not only will this cut costs and waste, it will also make it easier for employees to take notes and record information.
Connect with employees on the road
Finally, tablets are valuable tools for connecting with and engaging employees on the road. While smartphones are acceptable tools for accessing emails, tablets are more effective when documents and contracts need to be reviewed.
Tablets are also tailor-made for video conferencing and screen sharing. According to a 2013 study from Polycom and Redshift Research, the vast majority (96 per cent) of business leaders agreed that video conferencing can cater to improved productivity and better communications over long distances. An investment in tablets could be the perfect way to encourage employees to take greater advantage of this technology.