SELECT PERSPECTIVES BLOG

The Mobile Device Race and What it Means for Your Hiring Strategy

Posted by  Trevor McGlochlin

Text message ping, voicemail alert, missed call, email, startling alarm, calendar event reminder, operating system upgrade, app update, security notification, Facebook notification...most of us can relate to these technology overload moments! Suffice it to say the mobile device (e.g., phone, tablet, phablet, etc.) has become an appendage to many of us. When I say “us” I don’t just mean the United States or North America. I mean the entire world. Let’s look at some of the mobile device trends going on in the world today.

mobile devices in hiring strategy

United States consumers are using their mobile devices more and more. According to statcounter.com, the United States desktop and mobile market share percentage is coming closer to a 50/50 balance. The U.S. dropped from using desktops 95% of the time in 2010 to just 50% in 2017, while mobile device percentage has changed about the same but in the opposite direction. U.S. mobile device usage went from 5% in 2010 to 48% in 2017.

Data from Statcounter

As you can see in the graph above, there is a very clear trend that consumers in the U.S. are spending more time each year on mobile devices rather than desktops. If this trend continues, we may see the same results as those found in India; India ranks number one in the mobile device market share. In 2010, India showed mobile market share around 14% while desktop market share hovered around the 86% mark. Fast forward seven years, these have almost completely flipped. In 2017, India’s mobile market share is about 80% and desktop is about 20%. This is a massive change in seven years.

Data from Statcounter

What Does This Mean for Your Hiring Strategy?

These results can have strong implications on many parts of the business world. For HR departments looking to hire individuals within the U.S. or in different countries, this is valuable information. Here is what HR professionals should consider:

  • If there is an online assessment included in the selection process, there should be strong consideration of a mobile-friendly assessment that has been proven to receive good applicant reaction results. Check out our research on how applicants feel about mobile assessments

  • HR specialists that are tasked with determining the right selection assessment should be knowledgeable in the current research on mobile device testing and all of the factors that can influence equivalence between mobile and desktop tests. We've outlined our findings here: Emerging Trends in Employee Assessments: Are They Worth It?

In an article on wired.com, Christina Bonnington argues that smartphones could replace desktop computers altogether within a few years. She states, “Thanks to increased processing power, better battery life, vastly improved networking speeds, and larger screen sizes on mobile devices, the shift away from desktop is accelerating”. Perhaps India has already decided that desktops are obsolete - the current trend makes it seem that way. It also looks like India is winning the mobile device race!

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Tags:   hiring, employee assessments, technology

Trevor McGlochlin

Trevor McGlochlin is a Research Analyst at Select International. He earned a Master of Science degree in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from Florida Institute of Technology. His areas of expertise include selection, employee turnover, organizational development, applied research, and statistical analyses. His analysis work is centered around validation, adverse impact, turnover analyses, assessment scoring, and other data analysis.

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