10 Forces Shaping the Workplace of the Future

Here is an excerpt from an article written by Daniel W. Rasmus for Talent Management magazine. To check out all the resources and sign up for a free subscription to the TM and/or Chief Learning Officer magazines published by MedfiaTec, please click here.

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Tomorrow’s organizations may bear little resemblance to those we are familiar with, as demographic shifts, globalization and technology replace traditional work practices.

Coaching and development are important regardless of geography, but given the dynamics within emerging markets, and the workplace changes organizations can expect in the future, it is even more critical to offer this support to retain employees.

In the future, talent leaders will find themselves managing fewer standardized assumptions and practices that can be benchmarked, as more emergent and fluid models force them to constantly adapt. The traditional, smooth intersecting processes of recruiting, on-boarding, developing and retirement that make up the hire-to-retire cycle will be supplemented by additional entry and exit points. During the next decade, we may find the hire-to-retire cycle itself should be retired, as new models of work and work relationships outpace traditional employment.

Here are [four of] 10 concepts that will shape tomorrow’s organizations.

[To read the complete article, please click here.]

Transparency and trust: As organizations pull out of the Great Recession, they may find their reputations as reliable employers permanently tarnished by layoffs and a slow return to hiring. Boomers may feel it is time to call in promises made against frozen wages and other concessions. Employers that articulate and demonstrate accountability to their promises will be the most likely to attract and retain talent.

“Authenticity and transparency, aka honesty and truthfulness, are the new communication standards for the future,” said Sara Roberts, co-author of Light Their Fire and president/CEO of Roberts Golden, an organizational change consulting firm. “In a WikiLeaks era, privacy is an elusive goal. While it’s always been unbecoming and costly to be caught in a lie, the risk of false or partial disclosure is even greater now. The discovery of the truth can be accomplished in the push of a button. Honesty is a good policy not just because we’re forced to do it in this Internet era, but also because telling the truth demonstrates respect for one’s audience and gains people’s trust.”

Out-tasking: Outsourcing is passe, but it will continue. Outsourcing will be joined by out-tasking, which farms out small projects and tasks to specialists and generalists. Budgeting, managing and vetting out-taskers will become a critical skill as options increase, coordination costs rise and the impact on the organization in terms of dollars and people involved escalates. Organizations will need to evaluate risks associated with agreements with individuals who they may never meet. Making sense of online reputations will be a new core competency.

Contracting: Contractors are no longer independent entities. They will be seen as extensions of the firm. Organizations will need to understand their competencies, value-alignment, reputation and other intangible attributes. With social media, association will become more transparent, so managing the relationship between a firm and its contractors may involve public relations and legal, as BP recently discovered with Transocean, its platform operator during the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

Contract-to-hire: Contract-to-hire may provide the balance between renting talent and filling a role. With knowledge becoming more specialized, contracting makes sense because the contract firm can offer better competency development models, career paths and mentorships than an organization’s occasional need for a particular role. If an organization wants to test a new market, experiment with a new technology or evaluate the difference between insourcing and outsourcing, hiring a contractor may be the best answer. Consider a new “high-touch” retail experience that requires different skills than the existing retail staff possesses. With contract-to-hire, specialists in applying high technology to work-life balance could help people determine not just the functional comparison of devices, but how best to integrate them into their lives. If this idea works, contractors who do it well would be offered jobs. If it doesn’t work, the company has localized and minimized its risk.

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To read the complete article, please click here.

Daniel W. Rasmus is a strategist, industry analyst and author of Management by Design.


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