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Mobile devices, social media in 2012 means more work 'around the clock': Gartner

2012 will be the year when Google Apps will chip away at the Microsoft Office market, as the rise of mobile devices and social media could make managing a work life balance impossible, Gartner has claimed.

In its Predicts 2012: The rising force of social networking and collaboration services report, the research company said mobility and collaboration will go hand-in-hand next year.

“Social networking and collaboration applications will ultimately be constructed for deployment first on mobile devices, making the desktop device secondary to its mobile brethren,” the report reads.

“The always-on and always-connected employee-base will increasingly be expected to be available to the business around the clock and on weekends and holidays.”

The report also pointed out that while Microsoft Office has been “impregnable” by its competitors, the rise of Google Apps will manage to break through such barriers.

“All of these dynamics reveal an atmosphere of deep and constant change, which can lead to significant business advantage or to business disadvantages,” the report reads.

The report also found that by 2012, businesses that refuse to engage with customers via social media will be doing major damage to their business.

“Responding to inquiries via these channels will be the new minimal level of responsiveness expected,” the report reads.

“Those who do not measure up will incur the same level of wrath from customers as those who ignore the basic expectations of responding to email and telephone calls today.”

Follow Lisa Banks on Twitter: @CapricaStar

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