Every year there are trends which emerge and change the workplace as we know it. 2020 was a year with more change than any of us were used to or prepared for, which may make any future shifts seem subtle in comparison. But rest assured, a lot has happened this year and RecruitMyMom has been taking note.
Here are five work trends we’ve seen emerging this year which we believe will have an influence on the workplace going forward.
1. Remote and hybrid work are here to stay
After the initial upheaval that came with transitioning to remote working, things are starting to settle. Now that companies have the correct technology and infrastructure in place, and have first-hand experienced the benefits of remote working, there is no doubt it is here to stay. And big tech is leading the way, with companies like Amazon and Facebook recently adopting permanent remote work policies.
Our observation, however, has been a definite shift towards, and preference for, a hybrid working model. Companies are opting for a hybrid model as it offers more flexibility, incorporating a combination of on-site and off-site work as required by the job or as agreed between employer and employee.
2. A rise in contract hiring and outsourcing to consultants
One of our observations through the course of the year has been an increase in contract hiring and outsourcing to consultants, both locally and internationally. One of the reasons being, with the high level of uncertainty in the economic world at the moment, companies are reluctant to commit to permanent appointments. Contract hiring or the outsourcing of skills for a fixed duration or defined project allows companies the flexibility to manage the impact of market uncertainties.
An added benefit of outsourcing specialised skills is the freedom it allows companies to build lean organisations allowing for fast scale up or down as demand fluctuates. When a company outsources the skills they don’t have, it means they can better manage their internal resources and focus on becoming the expert at what they deliver to the market.
3. An increase in the popularity of Virtual Assistants
Virtual assistants (VA) are a cost and time efficient way to get anything from admin to graphic design to bookkeeping tasks done, and in these times of uncertainty, we’ve seen more and more companies adopting this risk-free staffing strategy. Companies realise that the ability to hire specific skills on an hourly or project basis gives them the flexibility and agility to be able to scale up or down as needed.
4. Soft skills are some of the most sought after
As we enter a largely digital era, we’ve seen employers place more and more value on meaningful connection. This means soft skills, many of which come naturally to women, are fast becoming some of the most sought after skills in the business world. From compassion to communication skills, soft skills contribute towards a harmonious and productive workplace and female hires are helping to achieve this.
5. A rise in gender diversity in mid-level management
Another of our observations is that companies have realised there has never been more of a need for women in leadership roles. Female hires in management roles contribute to a gender diverse workforce, and have a positive trickle down effect for the entire company. Women in leadership provides younger female employees with role models, and encourages them to pursue leadership themselves. A gender diverse workforce also attracts the greatest talent and can also signal to investors that a firm is well-run, which over time translates into stronger financial performance. Women in mid-level management is a key way to increase the gender diversity of an entire company.
While the level of disruption may have plateaued to a certain degree, things are always changing and these trends are sure to have an impact on the workplace for many years to come.
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