The future of work

Six predictions

12 July 2020 | Opinion

Windhoek • Sergio de Sousa



As the world of work changes, we look at what you can do to survive and thrive. Here are my predictions for the future world of work.

1. Freelancers will rise

An increasing number of people will work as freelancers, or on a project-by-project basis, rather than on traditional 8-to-5 employment terms. This phenomenon has earned its own buzz phrase: ‘the gig economy’, with ‘gig’ referring to a temporary job while also referencing ‘gigabytes’ of data required to operate in this way.

This also allows businesses to better manage their costs by moving these typically fixed costs to variable costs.

Freelancing has certainly been made possible by advances in technology. As a freelancer, you must learn to use technology to work smarter and market yourself in a way that quickly grabs the attention of possible recruiters. This is a bigger topic for future discussion. Also keep in mind that being a freelancer that uses technology well, your potential to get work is no longer limited to the borders of Namibia. You now have access to recruiters in a global network.

2. Location won’t matter

We are already experiencing the flexibility of working from anywhere. Studies are showing positive results where employees can work from home. Going forward, performance measurement will focus more on outcomes rather than traditional inputs and outputs. As long as the outcome is satisfactory, we can expect to have colleagues working with us in many ways – even in different countries and time zones.

Flexible ways of working are being introduced by FNB's own ProductiveMe capability. This initiative strives to create a work environment that supports productivity by allowing for the agility of employees to meet customer expectations through efficient and effective workspaces. These workspaces can be an office in a company building, a coffee shop table or a space in your own home. We can expect to see the behaviours and practices of the gig economy becoming more commonplace in our environment.

This also has implications on data connectivity with significant opportunities for internet services providers, but we will leave this discussion for a future article.

3. You’ll get fewer emails

For three decades, email has been the most efficient and reliable form of communication, especially in a corporate context. However, hordes of spam and the sheer amount of emails one must sort through every day means that this medium has developed some drag. If you get 300 new emails every day between your meetings, assignments, reports and projects, it can be near impossible to determine what the strategically most important task is on your to-do list.

Given FNB’s vision of becoming a platform-based business, we can all expect to see a significant drop in our dependence on email. Communicating with colleagues, customers and our partners through our digital platform will be a more flexible and intuitive way of collaborating. A recent example of this is the way FNB staff have been actively using Microsoft Teams to communicate, hold meetings, share documents, give presentations, and brainstorm. #Emailattachmentsmustfall.

4. Multi-skilled workers are in

We’ve all heard the saying: ‘Jack of all trades, master of none’. While there will always be a place for specialists in the workplace, the paradigm is shifting towards favouring people who are multi-skilled, also known as generalists. The future calls for more lateral thinking and we can expect to see many more people expanding their disciplines – and being rewarded for it.

The world also is rewarding people that can make links between previously unrelated disciplines and extracting benefits from new synergies. FNB for instance has over the last two years employed industrial engineers to help with end-to-end process transformation to improve customer service and reduce inefficiencies in the business.

5. Mundane tasks are out

Administrative tasks are not handed to robots with the intention of taking work away from people, rather, the intention is to free humans up to be… well, more human. It is not Man VS Machine, but Man WITH Machine. Empathy and creativity are essential skills that simply cannot be emulated by a machine… at least not yet. We will see more roles that play to our strengths as human beings rather than copy, paste, and repeat tasks. After all, Artificial Intelligence should enhance your work life, not just threaten it.

6. Real-time ratings will matter more than ever

If you examine the platform-based solutions we all use daily, you’ll notice that ratings have become an important consideration. Ratings offered by fellow users for an Uber driver, an Airbnb location, or even just an app in the App Store influences our decisions.

This is a powerful mechanism because it brings about transparency and accountability – two factors that ultimately build trust. The same transparency and accountability will likely be brought into the workplace, allowing employees to rate colleagues and co-workers regularly for things like quality of meetings, quality of work, speed, efficiency, and so on.

Ratings also help improve the overall customer experience by allowing consumers to rate businesses and their employees based on factors such quality, pricing, communication, turnaround time and level of service. Such transparency pushes business to ensure they deliver the best possible service to customers through their employees and systems. The better your ratings the more business you will be likely to get.

*Sergio de Sousa is FNB’s Head of Digital Transformation.

Similar News

 

Wellbeing strengthens employee engagement

1 month - 22 August 2021 | Opinion

Windhoek • Agnes Yeboah Change is constant in life, and it exempts no systems or people. The onslaught of Covid-19 has altered how the...

Why appointing a proxy and executor is vital

2 months ago - 14 August 2021 | Opinion

Windhoek • Taswald JulyMost of us have probably faced death and thought about our own mortality more often, and however daunting the prospect may be,...

Stay home, stay safe

2 months ago - 08 August 2021 | Opinion

In line with the very challenging times we are in due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and the increase in positive cases and deaths throughout the...

Bridging the healthcare divide saves lives

2 months ago - 27 July 2021 | Opinion

Windhoek • Celia Sofia Stephanus In December 2019, Covid-19 became something for the world to worry about. It was no longer something that was...

The ‘silent pandemic’

2 months ago - 25 July 2021 | Opinion

Windhoek • Dr David Emvula Infertility is a global health problem characterized by failure to achieve a pregnancy. It affects both women and men...

Career success positioning is vital

3 months ago - 30 June 2021 | Opinion

Windhoek • Agnes Yeboah The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the fourth industrial revolution. These days, because career paths are rapidly evolving, securing and maintaining...

The impact of Covid-19 is not gender impartial

3 months ago - 30 June 2021 | Opinion

Windhoek • Ruusa Nandago The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the economy has laid bare the many inequalities that exist in our societies....

Differences between Covid and flu

4 months ago - 07 June 2021 | Opinion

Windhoek • Dr Nelson Makemba There have been many mixed emotions around the Covid vaccine and it is important to establish what a vaccine...

Achieve your 2021 financial goals with a constrained budget

8 months ago - 07 February 2021 | Opinion

Lourencia Rodriques The Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in slow economic growth during 2020, and while it may be tough for many of us to...

Looking for wheels? Check this out!

8 months ago - 05 February 2021 | Opinion

Windhoek • Cameron Klassen With the Bank of Namibia Monetary Policy Committee's decision to keep the Repo rate at a historic low of 3.75%...

Latest News

Hileni Tjivikua is on a...

17th of October 14:56 | Business

Windhoek • Rivaldo Kavanga Hileni Tjivikua began her journey as the managing director of the Automobile Association of Namibia (AA Namibia) in 2014 and...

Two in a row for...

15 hours ago | Sports

Woermann Brock Hardware & Building Supplies lifted the Namib Diesel Social League 2021 trophy for the second consecutive year.Namib Diesel sponsored the tournament and Jaco...

First-ever career week at Duinesig

15 hours ago | Education

Swakopmund • [email protected] Duinesig High School hosted its first-ever career week from 11 to 15 October. Universities and colleges joined forces as exhibitors and...

Volkswagen Caddy to retail in...

15 hours ago | Motors

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles will be launching the new Caddy in South Africa from November 2021. The Caddy was first launched in the local...

Vaccination uptake not satisfactory ...

15 hours ago | Ministries

The number of new Covid-19 infections have significantly decreased in the past few weeks. Health minister Dr Kalumbi Shangula stated that the decline in...

Blue Waters up against Pro-Ed...

21 hours ago | Sports

Blue Waters will face Pro-Ed Old Boys Cricket Club I in the final of this year’s edition of the Coastal T20 Cricket League.Helmut Mack confirmed...

Elderly person murdered

1 day - 16 October 2021 | Crime

The police are appealing for help from the public to find the suspects wanted in connection with a murder and a housebreaking with intent to...

Kudus II ready for Unam...

1 day - 15 October 2021 | Sports

Walvis Bay •[email protected] The FNB Kudus II team will meet the University of Namibia (Unam) II in a Namibia Rugby Union (NRU) reserve...

World Food Day supported

1 day - 15 October 2021 | Local News

Swakopmund • [email protected] Hodago Fishing handed over 25 food parcels to the office of the governor, in support of World Food Day that...

Load More