Vendors in the mobility ecosystem are dramatically underestimating the demand for mobility solutions in the corporate arena. Why? Because they are missing demand that will come from two emerging segments of employees: Mobile Wannabes and Mobile Mavericks. When combined, these two worker segments account for 22% of all employees today, but by 2015 they will grow significantly to 42% of all corporate employees. To identify the needs of these mobile workers, Forrester analyzed results from the Forrsights Workforce Employee Survey, Q3 2010, which was fielded to over 5,500 employees in Canada, France, Germany, the UK, and the US and captures their smartphone device usage, purchasing behavior, and mobile application adoption.

Mobile Wannabe employees work in desk jobs at an office and do not get mobile devices from the corporate IT department, but they “want to” use their smartphone devices for work. Today, Mobile Wannabe workers account for 16% of all employees worldwide; however, by 2015, this segment will account for nearly 30% of all employees. Wannabe worker roles include executive assistants, clerical personnel, human resource workers, and customer service representatives. Momentum in this segment is driven by Millennial workers who grew up having easy access to personal computers and mobile phones and often purchase smartphones prior to entering the workforce.

An emerging segment of mobile workers are Mobile Mavericks who use smartphones for work-related activities, travel frequently, and often work at client sites or outside of the corporate office. Mavericks are considered to be mobile workers by the corporate IT department; however, they select and purchase their work-related smartphones on their own. Mobile Mavericks are the smallest but fastest growing segment of mobile workers and currently account for only 6% of workers. However, the Mobile Maverick segment will grow at a 20% CAGR, more than doubling in size by 2015 as more enterprises encourage employees to purchase their own smartphones to control mobile device costs.

For additional details on the size of the Mobile Wannabe and Mobile Maverick worker segments, or for recommendations on how vendors in the enterprise mobility ecosystem can capture and address the needs of workers in each segment, feel free to reach out to me, and watch for my upcoming report highlighting the rise of Mobile Wannabe and Mobile Maverick workers.