Demand for technological, social and emotional, and higher cognitive skills will rise by 2030. How will workers and organizations adapt?
If you or your clients are worried about how automation will impact the future of jobs, this 84-page report is a must-read. It includes breakdowns by industry, geography (US vs Western Europe), and extent of adoption.
It devotes many pages to what organizations are doing to prepare. Key strategies include:
- More continuous learning
- The creation of new business units
- More cross-functional collaboration
- More agile ways of working
- More team-based work
Dividing organizations into three buckets: extensive, moderate, and limited adopters of automation, it reveals substantially different views of the future world and in how each group is preparing for it. Of concern, is that the slow adopters will not invest in the preparation strategies outlined above and that, at the macro level, will create significant economic hardship for the most vulnerable.
The 2017 - 2018 Willis Towers Watson Global Future of Work Survey reveals how employers are moving beyond workplace automation myths as they determine how to manage the many emerging work options, from contingent labor to AI and robotics. It examines not only where breakthroughs are needed but also how to plot a course of action.
The results of this Towers Watson survey suggest employers are unprepared for how automation will change the nature of work, the workforce, and how both are managed:
- 27% of respondents say they require fewer employees due to automation today; that jumps to 49% by 2020.
- Respondents said 83% of work is currently being done by full-time employees. They expect this to drop to 77% by 2020. Work performed by the following categories of talent is expected to rise during that timeframe: Part-timers (7% now, 10% in 2020), free agents (4% now, 6% by 2020), workers on loan from other organizations (1% today, 2% in 2020), free agents from online talent platforms (.2% now, 1% in 2020). Work performed by consultants and outside agencies is expected remain flat at 4%.
- 69% or respondents feel automation and the changing workforce mix will require breakthrough approaches in performance management. Over two-thirds say it will require new organizational structures.
- More than a third of employers say they are unprepared to deconstruct jobs toward identifying which tasks can be automated.
- Over half say automation increases workplace flexibility today; 68% say it will do so in 2020.
- 38% say they are unprepared for the task of re-skilling those who will be effected by automation.
- 45% say by 2020 they will be redesigning jobs so the can be done by people with higher skills, 42% say they will be doing the same so jobs can be done by people with lower skills.
Their report elaborates on the following suggested course of action:
- Understand how technology and automation will impact work
- Define the re-skilling pathways
- Lead the change to new ways of working
"Describes tools and frameworks that leaders inside and outside the HR profession can use to transform the HR profession and their organizational success."
The book offers a collection of forward-looking advice from over 70 exemplary chief HR officers and other leaders whose mission is to "disruptively accelerate the progress of the HR profession to meet the unprecedented challenges and opportunities of the new world of work."
Chris Hood (one of the Founders of WE) contributed to a chapter entitled A Vision of the Workplace in 2025: Doom or Boom?. In it he describes how head-count planning and workforce cost-cutting will be replaced by an adaptive-value model where employees own their own reality and managers make decisions based on work required, rather than head count.
WE all know FM/CRE needs to be talking to HR, right? Here's an easy way to learn about what makes them tick and why that alliance is so critical to workplace success.
Driven by a desire for flexibility and control, US Freelance workforce is growing faster than the overall US workforce. What can employers learn from this trend?
Upwork and Freelancers Union today released the results of “Freelancing in America: 2017. The fourth annual study estimates nearly 36% of the U.S. workforce freelances and the trend is growing.
Freelancers* are playing a bigger role in corporate work. Employers who haven't already should start thinking about policies, practices, and place implications. But they might also consider what they can learn from the trend:
- 63% of freelancers choose to freelance (versus doing so out of necessity). Top drivers include freedom, choice, and flexibility. Half say they wouldn't even consider a traditional job.
- 55% of freelancers participated in skills training last year compared to only 30% of non-freelancers.
- About half of full-time freelancers are thinking about the implications of automation, compared to only 18% of employees.
- Millennials are embracing freelance work more than any other generation; nearly half do so.
- 70% of freelancers would prefer taking home more pay and purchasing benefits on their own (rather than through an employer).
- Part-time freelancing is down; full-time is up 70%.
- The percent of those making more than $75k/year (36%) has increased over 100% in the last 3 years.
In short, people want flexibility and control and are willing to take care of themselves if given the opportunity.
* Freelance population comprised of 35% hybrid workers, 31% independent contractors, 23% moonlighters, 6% freelance business owners, and 6% temp workers)
"New study forecasts only one in five workers are in occupations that will shrink; lays out blueprint for reskilling workers
“The Future of Skills: Employment in 2030" The study takes an entirely new approach to forecasting employment and skill demands in the US and UK.
- Education, healthcare, and wider public sector occupations are likely to grow while some low-skilled jobs, in fields like construction and agriculture, are less likely to suffer poor labor market outcomes
- Future skills predicted to be in greater demand include:
- Interpersonal skills, (teaching, social perceptiveness, and coordination, as well as related knowledge, such as psychology and anthropology)
- Higher-order cognitive skills (originality, fluency of ideas, and active learning)
- Systems skills (the ability to recognize, understand and act on interconnections and feedback loops in sociotechnical systems, systems analysis, and systems evaluation).
Advice to employers: Begin training existing employees for future skills.