Bottom Up & Inside Out: The Future of Work

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What does this mean?

Well to some of the shapers and influencers in this space, it’s firmly about driving engagement via digital collaboration to enable employees to shape, build and formulate the corporate narrative rather than the traditional top down approach.More and more digital channels, predominantly social platforms such as Yammer, LinkedIn and SLACK, are driving collaboration in a way that has never been seen before, capitalising on size, scale and immediacy of time. Rather than the mindset that we must do more with less due to mounting cost pressures or a recalibration of the business strategy, organisations are now starting to build online communities that allow their ‘experts’ (their employees) to engage with external influencers (customers) to define a company’s purpose.  This will see a fundamental shift of the needle and mindset, to be doing ‘more with more’.  Digital is, and will continue to, enable and revolutionise the workforce and for those who are slow to adapt or don’t adopt at all, may find themselves with a disengaged workforce in years to come.

That said however, digital means is certainly not the only way of the future. For many years now leading organisations have manufactured flexible work weeks, encouraging activity based working environments whereby employees don’t have an allocated desk and quite often their week will be  coupled with the opportunity to work from home.  Technology and connectivity allows this.  Organisations too are continuing to drive engagement via foundations, corporate social responsibility and in a number of cases an opportunity for employees to participate in innovations days or hubs to brainstorm and let the most wild and creative ideas be framed and shared with the business.

The future too will also see organisations continuing to diversify their offering to employees.  This may be in the form of programs or activities centred on wellbeing, health and nutrition.  It will almost certainly also mean we will see particular talent hired into no-typical roles, to how we view them today.

Above all, what will remain as important in the future as it is today, in order to maximise employee engagement and a sustainable future workplace is the belief of an organisation’s purpose and participation of Management and Executives in a genuine and authentic way.

So what will the future of work look like? An approach that will be bottom up rather than top down and inside out rather than outside in.

By Tim James, General Manager : Melbourne, APAC Practice Manager : Corporate Affairs

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