The world of work is undergoing major changes. The future of work is being shaped by technology that has transformed the way that we perform work and collaborate. These changes in the workplaces are essentially making it easier for us to perform our jobs better, whether you’re in a virtual, fixed, or hybrid setting.
A growing number of companies are offering their employees more flexibility with regards to when and where they work. Because of technology, many workers are now able to work from home in their pajamas. This means they also have the ability to take their work on the road with them if need be. Telecommuting is beneficial, particularly if you decide to relocate or if you need the flexibility to work at home when your child is sick, for example.
Flexible schedules are another aspect of workplace flexibility that allow employees to work at times outside of the usual start and stop times, which for most businesses are 8am to 5pm or 9am to 6pm. However, today’s employees are often demanding even more flexibility, requesting that employers allow them to have flexible schedules that change based on their needs at any given time.
Many Millennial workers are concerned with being able to pursue their interests outside of work and having the time to develop their personal lives. They also want to have jobs that fulfill them personally, so they’re seeking careers with meaning rather than just a paycheck.
Helping workers at your company achieve work-life balance is beneficial because when they spend most of their waking hours at work and neglect other aspects of their lives, they tend to feel unhappy and are less productive as a result. In addition to flexible work schedules, companies can offer benefits like generous PTO policies and compressed workweeks to help their employees achieve better work-life balance.
The Human Cloud
Over the last decade, the number of websites connecting businesses with freelancers has grown exponentially. The biggest markets for these types of sites are the US, India, and the Philippines. These sites allow companies to work with freelancers across the world. Business owners using these sites have a lot to gain because they get instant access to a diverse talent pool without having to pay salaries, health benefits, and other overhead costs.
For workers, these sites are causing a race to the bottom because they are bidding on work in competition against freelancers who live all over the world. Therefore, somebody in Mumbai or Manila is easily going to be able to undercut someone in Los Angeles or London for the mere fact that the cost of living is a lot lower in the former cities. As a result, these websites promoting the human cloud are driving down wages and inequality around the world.
Robots and artificial intelligence are also affecting the workplace. Some people worry that their jobs will become obsolete and replaced by robots. The Boston Consulting Group predicted that up to a quarter of jobs would be replaced by robots by 2025. While it’s true that machines will impact our jobs, they are not likely to replace entire jobs. Instead, they will be used to complete specific tasks or to augment jobs performed by humans.
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