When you think about the future of work, does your mind wander to thoughts of robots that do your paperwork; a job where you don’t have to choose between travel or leisure time or work; or the ability to work for your dream company in New York from your sofa in London?
These aren’t distant concepts that you only see in the movies. These are future workplace developments that are happening right now, and workers all around the world are already reaping the rewards. Here are 3 ways that show the future of work is already here:
Automation is eliminating paperwork
Every single workplace requires paperwork, from the bank’s lengthy mortgage application to the doctor’s surgery’s health questionnaire. But it’s wasting precious time. A recent poll of over 2,000 UK workers found that they waste 53 minutes a day – over half an average working day every week – on “pointless” paperwork. Thankfully, automation technology is already here to eliminate these manual tasks.
Automation tech, such as Business Process Management software, isn’t new, but its capabilities are no less impressive, especially as the world becomes more environmentally conscious. This tech automates the tedious process of printing out forms (very environmentally unfriendly), filling it out, handing it over to various colleagues for actioning, before finally being stored in the filing cabinet to gather dust. Thanks to automation, there’s a better way to spend the time, resources, and people power that would usually be wasted.
Avoid the manual process of paperwork and automate it instead
People have more control over their work-life balance thanks to remote working
Remote working is not a passing trend. Buffer’s State of Remote Work 2019 report found that 99% of respondents want to work remotely at least some of the time for the rest of their careers. That’s a staggering figure, and does nothing but prove that the future of work is remote and making waves now.
It doesn’t take a genius to understand why it’s so popular. Better work-life balance, no commute, and less stress are all touted as the primary benefits of remote working. Without the grind of the daily commute – lasting an average of 56 minutes a day according to a report by The Royal Society for Public Health – people now have more control over their working schedules. By working from home, people can organise work around the school run, healthcare appointments, and caring responsibilities, as well as enjoy more leisure time.
Remote working eliminates the stress of the daily commute
All of this is only possible because the tech exists to support it. A report by software comparison site GetApp, which surveyed over 900 US workers, found that the rise in remote working has primarily been driven by the proliferation of mobile devices, fast internet connections, cloud-based storage, and on-demand SaaS solutions. In other words, the rise in the digital workplace has enabled remote working to flourish.
Collaborative working has gone global
By 2069, futurist Brad Berens believes that technology will allow people from opposite sides of the world to appear as though they are sitting side-by-side in the same virtual office. Whilst we may be a few decades away from that, the idea that globally dispersed teams will work together is already happening.
These days, the improvements in digital workplace technology, the increasing demand for remote working, and the rise in digital nomads (those who work whilst travelling) mean that people have the ability to work for a company that’s hundreds or even thousands of miles away from their hometown. Workers can collaborate over internal social media, share files and knowledge on their company intranet software, and meet with their manager over video conferencing. The days of working within a 20 mile radius of your home are over, generating bigger job opportunities for staff and businesses alike.