How is the workplace changing and why?
The workplace is changing at a vast pace, especially due to the recent COVID19 outbreak, and during this time three main changing factors have been identified:
1.The fourth industrial revolution and the technological advancements: These advances are mainly focused on automation and AI. Undoubtedly, automation of repetitive jobs could allow us, humans to focus on more intuitive tasks that require tacit knowledge and creativity, leading to higher levels of productivity. Therefore, an increasing number of businesses are expected to automate their procedures which until now, were performed by humans.
2.Our changing lifestyles, driven by globalization: Younger people are more likely to seek a more balanced lifestyle. In fact, CareerAddict’s recent study on ‘The Future of Work’ found that Millennials and Gen Zers would give up a considerably higher amount of their salary for less worktime, which tells us that compared to Baby Boomers, they value work-life balance more than money.
3.Increased remote work: Despite the major crisis, COVID19 has taught us that remote teams can be equally, if not more productive than local ones. The recent shift confirmed that the future global workforce will be a remote one.
A remote workplace which is also characterized by a high degree of automation, will very likely require a different combination of skills, which is why, along with the workplace, people should change the way they work, and learn.
What kind of skills will the employee of the future have?
The World Economic Forum suggests 10 technology-related and soft skills, which in the near future, will describe the ideal employee skillset. While the employee of the future will no longer need to have strong memory, math and manual work abilities, skills such as emotional intelligence, idea generation and programming will be on the rise.
At CareerAddict, we examined the degree of perceived readiness of 1,000 people taking into consideration those 10 skills and we found that currently, on a scale of 1-100, overall people score 68. What’s particularly interesting is that different demographics seem to hold different skills, which shows how everyone complements each other and is needed in the workplace. Specifically, while men seem to have more technology related and problem-solving abilities, women seem to have higher emotional intelligence and be better leaders. In addition, while Millennials seem to be ready the most, Gen Zers have greater programming skills, Gen Xers are better complex problem solvers and Baby Boomers are emotionally intelligent.
What should employees do to ensure that their skillset remains relevant?
In a single word, the employee of the future should be adaptable. Automation of tasks will cause certain repetitive jobs to die out while brand new ones, will be created. In addition, the fact that the job market is becoming global now more than ever, means that competition, as well as opportunities for both workers and employers will rise, which in combination with the rapid technological change, is why developing a unique, current and relevant skillset will be vital.
In the future, education won’t only be for children and young adults. Employees will be expected to take on continuous reskilling and upskilling trainings, either individually, or on-the-job. Thankfully, according to our study findings, the vast majority of people see the benefit of continuous training and are open to it. In fact, companies such as Amazon and JPMorgan have spotted the qualities of a workforce with up-to-date skills and have already introduced reskilling trainings.