Ranks of mobile workers to swell to 93.5 million by 2024 amid move to remote work, says IDC

Information mobile workers will surge in the years to come as remote work becomes normalized, according to an IDC forecast.

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The number of mobile workers will swell to 93.5 million in the US in 2024, up from 78.5 million in 2020, and represent almost 60% of the US workforce, according to IDC data.

The increase in mobile workers will largely be driven by knowledge workers. IDC segments the mobile workforce into two categories: Information Mobile Worker and Frontline Mobile Worker. An Information Mobile Worker typically works from one location with dedicated compute resources for data, content and productivity applications. Think programmers, analysts, marketers, accountants and lawyers. Frontline Mobile Workers are typically client facing and distributed such as a nurse, store associate, field service technician or construction worker.

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According to IDC, the move to remote work will drive the Information Mobile Worker category through 2024. Today, frontline workers are 57% of the total US workforce and have been part of a collaboration software boom as players like Microsoft Teams and Workforce by Facebook aim to ease communication.

Enterprises have been culling leases and their commercial real estate holdings since they expect more employees will work remotely going forward even as the COVID-19 pandemic eases. As a result, companies have been investing in mobile security, collaboration and infrastructure to support remote work.