The recent evolution in our technology landscape have led to new business opportunities/models being created. This wave of disruption and innovation has also fueled speculation that a lot of conventional jobs are set to be disrupted as well, with certain jobs/careers being phased out completely.
It is important that at this point in time we understand how technology is pivotal to the evolution of a society and how organizations and individuals need to prepare for the future-of-work.
Human beings are resourceful and as such we have been innovating and improving since the dawn of time. But in this day and age certain advancements like the mass penetration of the internet and mobile phone adoption (3.9 billion Internet users worldwide, 4 billion unique mobile users) have created the right environment to advance the human condition further. It seems like the world is innovating at a much faster pace than before and that is true.
But the journey to innovation and disruption is not so simple, especially when we talk from a business perspective. It is a process that requires understanding, patience and experimentation.
Right now, with respect to the future of work, we are in the process of building understanding. Simply put we are developing tools to automate certain business practices, but implementation (use-cases) are still being figured out.
An example of this is how we can build algorithms that can predict the stock market but we are still figuring out how this sort of a system can become mainstream. The objective here isn’t to make people lose jobs, innovation raises the bar on what you currently do and ask you to do better. So actual use-cases won’t appear unless organizations reengineer their current work-scenarios as well, elevating their people to positions that can make room for systems that can evolve standard work practices.
How work works
See the problem with work is that it isn’t irrelevant, its impractical. People work 9 to 5 jobs which offers maybe 2 to 3 hours of actual productivity per day. It isn’t that a lot of us are slacking, its just that this culture is pretty much built into work places across the globe.
But people still commute (sometimes for hours) to get to these jobs, without giving a second thought to this dilemma. Countries across the globe are now experimenting with agile work, work from home and three-day weekends etc.; in a bid to boost productivity and figure work out. But what we are missing out on is the end to end digitization of work – a concept that can help organizations move towards a borderless work environment aided by online tools and environments.
Digitization of work
The concept of digitization of work is not something new. Cloud computing, Fiber-to-the-home based internet services etc., have led to many software firms developing solutions that aid in the development of work from any physical presence.
Deputy is a pretty good example of an omni-channel software that helps you schedule your employees with an app. It helps you manage employee schedules across multiple locations via multiple platforms. Now managers can drag and drop employee schedules, collaborate, share job rosters and communicate these plans to their employees through (SMS, emails, push notifications etc.). You can easily build lean and efficient teams since a lot of the scheduling grunt work is handled by the platform itself.
Another example is a tool that almost all of us might be using Google Docs. This platform has helped digitize collaborative document, spreadsheets and slide building. Most offices across the globe use document platforms like Microsoft office etc. to get work done. If these tools can be offered to individuals and organizations with the means to work from anywhere, at any time and collaborate across continents that is a game changer and that is exactly what google docs is, a game changer which needs more work and integrations (expansion into design, development and version management avenues)
The future of work is nothing to be afraid of, rather it is something to be inspired by. Technologies and innovations are providing us with an opportunity to raise the bar on how we work and how we can manage productivity and achieve a greater work life balance.
Its simple less hours and more work gives everyone a fair chance at living and enjoying life. Tech is the game changer here – you can either fight it or choose to work with it.