Post-COVID-19: 8 Ways the Future Workplace May Change

A workplace is a space where we give life to our ideas and projects. It’s an environment that we get to know very well — sort of like a second home. Nonetheless, we enter a new era and can’t help but wonder how it will change for the future.

As Forbes indicates, businesses are trying to find a way to reintroduce employees into the work environment after the pandemic. For example, Spotify is allowing employees to work from home until the end of the year, as reported by TechCrunch.

How are companies planning to change our workspace? Are robots going to take over? Is teleworking the new norm? The answers are a bit more complicated. Anyhow, it’s not as bad as it seems, quite the contrary. Let’s try to find out.

Future Workplace May Change Post-COVID-19

Post-COVID-19: 8 Ways the Future Workplace May Change

1. Technological upgrade

As we enter in a new decade, we’re expecting technology to get more and more advanced. Software developers are creating new apps, community clouds, and virtual work environments to ease the work of employees. Additionally, the use of Artificial intelligence in 2021 is going to skyrocket. Don’t panic; it’s not here to steal our jobs, as some people might argue. 

Artificial intelligence is here to help us focus on tasks that only humans can accomplish. Traits typical of us involve complex functions that robots can hardly replicate. For instance, AI can’t imitate human qualities such as creativity, judgment, and emotional intelligence. These three attributes are at the basis of our existence, and our society couldn’t function properly without. So while machines complete mechanical tasks, and your virtual assistant processes data, you can come up with new ideas. This way, the time you spend working will be used more efficiently. 

With the help of automation, the machines will complete challenging assignments for factory workers or people who perform dangerous tasks. Also, if you work in a team, virtual work environments, as well as community data storage applications, will become essential. You may benefit from your very own toolkit that will adapt to your demands.

Big software companies are already offering intelligent language, and assignments help apps to ease our work and connect to other associates from all around the world. 

The marketing and finance field is already using AI to keep track of data related to customers, to improve sales, and even to interview job candidates. Business leaders are already working with HR to develop algorithms that can scan the portfolios of candidates and identify their talents.

Fortunately, employees are trying to get updated on all kinds of useful software. Workers have noticed that their productivity has increased substantially because of mobile applications — an idea supported by an Apperian study. Employers continue to encourage their staff to get more comfortable and autonomous in a digital environment. Many companies are offering digital courses to help workers transition to this new era of computers. But if you’re a millennial, don’t be concerned, chances are you already know everything about the virtual world.

2. Skills

As mentioned in the previous paragraph, soft skills will be the center of future workspace. Employers will look for people with a growth mindset that will allow them to learn and better themselves at work. Furthermore, companies will prefer people who are creative, innovative, and who can bring positive change in the workplace.

For example, communication skills, cultural awareness, and emotional intelligence will be quintessential for teachers, college essay writers, and social media managers.

Company leaders are already mapping out and planning the main skills relevant to each branch. The difficult part is finding candidates who are already familiar with the much needed soft skills. As a result, HR is creating training programs for new and old positions. The workers are encouraged to learn focus mastery, leadership, and critical thinking through reskilling programs and postgraduate education.

Furthermore, while the percentage of unskilled and routine occupations diminishes, experience, and tenure will be secondary.

The jobs that are most likely to thrive in the future are the ones that are cognitively demanding. For instance, a virtual program could imitate a radiologist’s work. However, it couldn’t replace a chemical engineer. Thus, we advise you to get flexible, educated, and passionate about your career if you want to keep it in the future.

3. Work ethics

While the work environment gets increasingly digitized, employees will have more time and energy. Excess resources that can serve both the company and society. Additionally, they’ll work with passion, not just for money. The new generation of workers is aware of how an outdated workplace can be counterproductive. They’re more interested in working for something they believe in, for a company that has human values.

Personal experiences, compassion, and social contribution are all elements of workplaces in the future. Moreso, company leaders will encourage employees to become friends with each other, not just colleagues. That way, work can be a place where friends share ideas and create together. Forget about chasing the money in an endless rat race, 2021 is about having fun at work while being productive.

4. Openness

Along with renewed work ethics, future work environments will be more open and honest. Transparency will ensure a healthier workplace and, as a result, a stronger, more successful business. The workspace will look like an open network that can be both productive and efficient.

Since meritocracy will reign in the work environment, workers will start to talk about salaries. Being informed about other salaries might motivate us to work harder, to cooperate more, and to take training courses. Besides, the method of open wages keeps corporations responsible for how they pay employees, eliminates favoritism, and gender income gaps. 

Communication is another crucial element of workplaces in 2021. Growth and expansion is the basis of the forthcoming work dynamic, but how can we grow and expand if we don’t speak our minds? Practicing radical sincerity ensures a healthy environment for all workers. That’s why businesses are slowly encouraging us to be more direct, candid, and more empathetic when offering feedback to colleagues and superintendents.  

Information will be transparent and accessible to all co-workers. Online community clouds like Google Drive will help teams connect through each other’s work. We can share files from multiple devices, compare and merge ideas to find solutions. Employees will catch up on meetings, archived files, and develop projects whenever they need to. 

Last but not least, inclusiveness will characterize our relationships. Gender-neutral bathrooms and language, multi-ethnic teams, and religious tolerance will become part of the work environment more than ever. Openness will create a better world for everyone and a more comfortable workplace. 

5. Customer care

Most companies are aware that dysfunctional customer care is a significant disadvantage. If clients have negative experiences with customer care, they won’t come back. As a result, serious companies are developing a customer care culture. Staff needs to be patient, available, and helpful whenever a client needs help with an issue. You know what they say, the customer is always right

Influential corporations promote face to face customer feedback. Whether it’s meeting in person or video calls, clients feel more comfortable with human contact. Customers want to feel like the company puts effort into helping them. 

Client surveys are also fundamental for any business that wants to grow. Customer feedback can improve products and increase sales. Additionally, users can rate the company and estimate how likely they would recommend the business to other people.

6. Collaboration

Work strategies will change too. Soon, we are going to be part of small teams, each designed to dismantle a task or a project. Thus, specialized employees can group with others to create a high-performing, flexible, and independent micro system.

The first benefit of restricted teams is that each person can contribute to the project. We can take an example from school projects. There’s usually the student who does all the work, while other members of the group relax. If only three people composed each group, then every member would contribute.

The second benefit of working in small groups is interpersonal relations and productivity. Co-workers can get to know each other better and create working chemistry that can help boost efficiency. 

Thirdly, the “tribes” can manage themselves. Empowering employees is a strategy to motivate them. The team can set specific objectives that are important for the members. As a result, employees will be more determined to reach those goals as fast as possible, without compromising the quality of the work.

Additionally, CEOs will reduce meetings with the staff. Personnel conferences are essential to brainstorm and make important decisions. However, having a dozen people express their opinions in a short amount of time is often unproductive and a waste of time. A way to avoid that is to have micro meetings: five people or less can easily communicate without arguing. Alternatively, employees can write their opinions on paper so that they have a clear idea of what to say. Meetings will be shorter than 40 minutes.

7. Work from home

In 2021, many businesses will allow us to work from home. Management companies, professional writing services, and travel agencies are considering this option to cut maintenance costs. Employees can work from home for remote agencies located on the other side of the planet. 

Furthermore, businesses are thriving with the help of freelancers and contractors. Independent workers often have unique approaches and offer new initiatives. Growing companies are in constant need of freelancers, and they pay competitive wages to work with people with digital agility and innovative solutions.

8. Employee care

Last but not least, corporations will pay much more attention to employees. As mentioned before, HR is creating personalized training courses for each worker. Also, forward-thinking organizations are well-aware that if workers feel respected, they will be more useful and involved in the company. 

Firstly, training programs will become routine. Employees will train to become more digitally flexible, cooperative, and independent. In fact, 2021 is about learning new things regardless of your age, gender, or profession. All new-age abilities are practical and promote company growth. 

Secondly, workers will receive bonuses based on the organization’s profit. Employees will receive percentages according to their work. In some cases, staff will vote for the rates they get.

Thirdly, we're expecting limited schedules — eight hours a day, with breaks in between and free weekends. If people work more, superintendents work too: personal time is also important for leaders and CEOs. Moreso, some corporations want to implement digital devices that track the wellbeing of employees: calories, temperature, hydration level, blood pressure, etc. These devices will detect abnormal levels and encourage employees to take a break, eat, and hydrate.

Now for the fun part...

Mental health has been a massive topic in the last decade. So corporations have come up with company retreats. These collective vacations aim to create relations between co-workers and superintendents. During a company retreat, the entire staff flies to a particular location. The trip is usually one week long, and it involves touristic and social activities and unusual food.

Conclusion:

Technological upgrades, inclusiveness, and customer care are defining the future of the workplace. We’re going to work less and better in small groups. We’ll go on company trips, and our co-workers will be our friends. Sounds like a dream, right? Well, it’s not hard to believe that as our society progresses, work conditions become better. So, we welcome this new high tech era with open arms.

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