With the ever-changing world, it's vital for businesses to stay up-to-date with the developments. Sometimes that involves altering the business environment even if it means a 180-degree flip.
Innovative developments not only cater to employees' needs but also improve productivity in the workplace. Every business has its own methods and tactics depending on the field of work and the type of staff hired. However, there are some trends that are taking shape in many large businesses in 2019, defined majorly for the current and future Millennial (aged 23 - 38) and Generation Z (aged 22 and under) employees.
These are some of the main trends businesses are adopting in recent times, allowing for higher productivity among the workforce:
1. Improvement of gender and racial diversity
Businesses are opting to become more inclusive of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, disability as well as religious orientations. In doing so, they are expanding the workforce into more niche regions, which is leading to the promotion of all-round equality. However, many companies have yet to reach all types of inclusion.
According to McKinsey & Company's 2018 report, "companies in the top quartile for gender diversity on their executive teams were 21 percent more likely to experience above-average profitability than companies in the fourth quartile." In terms of cultural and ethnic diversity, it was found that there was a "33 percent likelihood of out-performance."
2. Flexible work schedules
Some employees have been given the opportunity to choose their working hours as long as the company's minimum working hours are met. Though this may not be applicable to all domains, allowing employees to work remotely is another option companies have been offering more recently.
3. The "100-year life"
Japan predicts that "half of all babies born currently to live to or past 100." If global life expectancy increases, future generations of people must change the way they work and live.
If that's the case, a different kind of structure will take over the lives of young professionals. Instead of working at a very young age, they will launch careers later in life. They will also opt for more flexible options and take time off to raise families. The "100-year life" model focuses on just that. Businesses must take this into consideration before binge-hiring millennials.
4. Automation of tasks
With the advancement of technology, employees must now be able to work hand in hand with robots and automated technologies. Menial and repetitive tasks are done through automation as well as selection processes and information procurement, leaving time and room for employees to do the more difficult and necessary tasks.
According to Dan Schawbel, partner and research director at New York City-based Future Workplace, "If we don't keep up with all the changes going on around us in terms of the tasks we do every day, we become obsolete."
5. Diversifying learning methods
Each generation has its own way of learning; people pick up new information in different ways. With Artificial Intelligence becoming a key factor in the way businesses function, employees must learn and develop their skills as technological advancements take over. In order to successfully do so, businesses should provide employees with learning opportunities in the form of workshops, hands-on training, and the like.
6. Greater focus on culture
Culture in the workplace depends on various factors including those who work there, the sector, and the image the company would like to portray.
With this, each business ends up developing its own culture. In turn, employees could potentially find a workplace where they "fit-in". Having a team or individual who is comfortable in their environment increases the productivity of the company as a whole.
7. Freelancer outsourcing
The expenses that come with having to find and recruit new employees is much higher than that of outsourcing. With the number of freelancers who have emerged, businesses are finding it easier and cheaper to simply outsource any task they have to these freelancers.
Attend "STEP Next" in the UAE
STEP Next is MENA's exclusive tech talent summit designed to match the best talent with the top tech companies and startups. The event's first edition, set to take place Nov. 19 at Dubai Knowledge Park, will have more than 30 participating companies, talks, workshops, and activities.
More than 300 job seekers and working professionals are invited to take part in the summit for a potential opportunity in a working environment that best suits their career goals.
*Disclaimer: STEP Next is a brand owned by STEP Group, the parent company of StepFeed.