The digital employee (and how to reach him)

HRM 01 Feb 2013

The last few years have seen the evolution of the mobile device from luxury to necessity. An increasing number of consumers are relying less on their home PCs and more on their mobile devices to stay connected.

According to a Nielsen report published in June 2012, 72% of phone users in Singapore are using smartphones as their primary means of communication. A recent Black Box survey among 500 Singaporeans yielded results of 88% smartphone ownership, and found that 92% of those aged 25-39 are smartphone owners.

The spectacular rise of mobile device users and the corresponding mobile technological advancements have given rise to a new type of worker – the Digital Employee. This is the Singaporean who relies heavily on his mobile devices to manage almost every aspect of his life, including organisation, communication, entertainment, and fairly recently, job-hunting.

This significant development calls for companies to re-assess their methods of searching for new employees. Reaching the Digital Employee through mobile is now not only an option. It is a mandatory. Consider the following:

•        Mobile is a critical part of the marketing mix. Priyanka Bhattacharya, Editor at Digital Market Asia, states that consumers in Singapore spend more than 23% of online time on mobile devices, yet only 1% of advertising spend is allocated to mobile media. Given the current mobile landscape, there is clearly a need to put more money into mobile advertising.

•        Mobile is a mass medium. According to Rohit Dadwal, managing director, Mobile Marketing Association, Asia Pacific, “Mobile… complements other media in engaging the consumers.” Mobile presents a targeted, cost-effective means by which businesses can reach a wide base of consumers instantaneously. In time, it may prove even more effective than traditional mass media.

•        The future is mobile. The trends indicate that mobile will continue to grow exponentially. It is estimated that within three years, tablets will replace PCs and smartphone usage will increase threefold. Dr. John Sullivan, HR Practitioner and writer at, stresses the importance of not only being aware of current trends, but knowing how to build on them: “If you merely identify and copy current trends, by the time your firm implements them, you will have fallen behind.” Bambos Kaisharis, Head of Consumer Goods, Google, Singapore says that ‘search,’ a very basic activity among PC users, “will move from home to the streets. People will slowly stop using the search capability on their home PC and use mobiles to search location- based information whether for a service or shopping.”

The mobile playing field is vast, simply because not many are playing. The Digital Employee is out there, looking for a job. And the best part is, reaching him is not difficult at all.



Angeli Beltran

Managing Director of JobsDB (Singapore and Malaysia)

For more information, please visit

Tel: 6861 1000


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