What Lies Ahead For the Workplace?

“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” – Ferris Bueller

Business, like life, moves pretty fast, and to keep up with all the changes, you must stay current. It also helps to understand the latest workplace trends in hiring and what workers expect from their places of employment. In this blog, we’ll look at several trends you should be aware of that are influencing the workplace in 2021.

Gen Z Enters The Workforce

The Gen Z population are those born between 1997 and 2015, meaning the oldest of this group are in their 20s and are entering the full-time workforce. More than 65 million people are a part of this generation and could account for 40% of workers in the near future.

While each generation has had its idiosyncrasies, Gen Zs are different. They are the first generation born and raised entirely in the Internet age and the fast pace that it has produced. Gen Zs are digitally savvy and expect the modern workplace to be up to date with digital software tools. Because of this expectation, managing a Gen Z workforce is not easy for some older generations. Business owners and managers need to embrace the workforce transformation brought by this generation and provide the software and technical tools necessary for this group to thrive. Understanding the peculiarities of Gen Zs and listening to their ideas will help them transition into the workforce and better integrate them into your business more quickly and efficiently. Because Gen Z workers will eventually take over, businesses of all sizes need to explore the mindsets and skills that this generation offers.

A Healthy Workplace is More Important Than Ever

As workers return to businesses after the Covid pandemic, they are increasingly aware of the importance of a safe workplace. They also place it high on the list of things they look for in a job environment. A healthy work environment is a game-changer for many businesses in reducing the expenses related to absenteeism, turnover, medical costs, and employee compensation. It is estimated that the total productivity loss from employee absenteeism is about $226 billion each year. One recent study found that a good workplace environment produces greater profitability and a drop in absenteeism.[1] In addition, a good workplace environment increases employee happiness, morale, and motivation.

While the benefits of fostering a healthy work environment are clear, creating and managing a workplace that all employees love is a daunting task. That is where listening to your employees is key.

Workers Like Flexible Schedules

The 9-to-5 work schedule has been the norm for generations of workers, but today it faces extinction. Modern technology, the challenges of balancing work and family life, and the changing work landscape brought on by the Covid lockdowns have disrupted the 9-to-5 mindset of many businesses and workers.

One New Zealand company experimented with the suitability of a four-day workweek. After two months of testing, they found that employee work-life balanced increased by 24%, engagement rose by 20%, and stress levels dropped by 7%.[2] Many companies are following suit in introducing flexible work schedules, and most employees believe that work flexibility helps increase their productivity.

These are just three of the trends changing the business landscape now and the years ahead. Embracing these changes now will help your business survive and thrive today and in the future.

[1] https://www.quantumworkplace.com/future-of-work/14-benefits-of-employee-engagement-backed-by-research

2 https://money.cnn.com/2018/07/19/news/economy/new-zealand-four-day-work-week-perpetual-guardian/index.html