From the great resignation and quiet quitting, to widespread talent shortages, there is a transformation happening in the world of work driven by technology and underlying shifts within the workforce that predates the Covid-19 pandemic.
Exclusive: 5 foreign job trends that are slowly becoming a part of Africa’s work culture
In this article, Liz Thomas, process design and operations at Hugo Technologies Inc, explains the future of office culture in Africa, and how this would be influenced by fast-paced technological innovations.
Flexibility, transparency, and a focus on employee well-being have taken center stage while companies restructure for greater efficiency with an increased focus on digital and soft skills.
As part of the tech ecosystem that’s driving some of this change, here are 5 key trends that are set to prevail globally as the future of work evolves:
Greater transparency throughout organizations:
In the push to maximize efficiency and develop healthier work environments with more resilient workforces, companies are championing transparency in a few areas.
- Salaries and compensation– this openness holds companies accountable to their employees by highlighting pay gaps, biases towards certain personality types that may be better negotiators, and underpaying existing employees as the company grows.
- Information that everyone can access– work management tools like HRMs, CRMs, and cloud-based productivity tools, allow for full transparency on any workflow at any time.
- Championing honest feedback– The above tools, when coupled with cultures that promote candor and honest feedback, lead to better project outcomes such as increased productivity, better optimization, and holistically developed solutions. Specifically, candor and honest feedback are most effective when they can be applied to everyone. From CEO to intern- no one can be above correction or input.
Remote working & flexibility:
As a result of the pandemic, remote work has been increasingly normalized. Most job seekers and employees have a base-level expectation of hybrid or flexible work options reflecting the shift within the workforce towards better work-life balance and employee well-being. For employers, being location-independent offers the opportunity to recruit across a wider range of talent and skillsets, often at more competitive rates than local labor markets.
Automation and AI:
The future of work and life will increasingly be shaped by advances in artificial intelligence, automation, and machine learning. According to Harvard Business Review, more than 50% of companies are adopting AI & Automation for repetitive tasks, situation analysis, and processing data in the bid to maximize efficiency. Employees and job seekers alike may be concerned about how this will affect their employment prospects in the future but workforce automation is set to create more jobs than it displaces due to the dynamic between people and technology. For the foreseeable future, the key to building and retaining a competitive and resilient workforce will continue to lie in flexibility and learning & development with a focus on interchangeable skillsets.
Increased focus on training & development:
In the report "HR Predictions for 2022," global research analyst Josh Bersin writes that companies previously saw employee training as essential but not necessarily as a competitive advantage. This is rapidly changing due to digitalization and automation—two trends that are transforming how businesses operate around the world.
Embracing a culture of learning & development is central to building a sustainable workforce in the digital world where change happens in an instant. Companies well-positioned to thrive in the future will prioritize upskilling and reskilling not just around soft skills like empathy, emotional intelligence, and critical thinking, but also around digital skills with AI applications, robotics, and more.
Diversity and inclusion in the workplace:
Possibly the most enduring trend on this list, D&I will continue to play a pivotal role in the future of work. In particular, companies within tech ecosystems will make D&I a cornerstone of growth amidst the shortage of skilled tech talent as the need for unbiased AI & technology increases. According to McKinsey, companies with heterogeneous senior leadership surpass their competitors and are more successful at attracting top talent.
Beyond these 5 trends, one thing that all companies, employees, and job seekers need to embrace is innovation. The future of work is rapidly evolving and survival belongs to early adopters.
Liz Thomas is a process design and operations expert with over 10 years of experience managing product portfolios for companies like Shell Trading. Liz is the VP of Client Success at Hugo Technologies Inc.
Hugo builds and manages remote support operations teams across Africa, for some of the world’s largest technology and media companies. They specialize in end-to-end machine learning data annotation and customer support solutions.
Hugo Technologies is helping to create the world's 'future of work' by connecting untapped talent markets to global opportunities using technology. It understands the importance of Africa to the global and digital economy, particularly from a human capital perspective. Through Hugo, international firms efficiently access African talent to build better businesses and grow.
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