With the rate at which technology is changing, it’s probably no surprise to hear that the workplace is also changing. There are new apps, new ways of automation being created, and even new industries popping up every day. Interestingly, though, the world of work isn’t necessarily changing in ways people expected. It isn’t simply that technology has been integrated into work, making things more digital and less hard copy. The way that teams and companies are working has fundamentally changed in some cases. Read on for three ways this is happening.
1. New Ways of Communicating
In the past, companies served clients in their city, meetings were held around a table in conference rooms, and prospective employees from out of town would be flown in for an interview. Now, none of these limitations have to exist in the workplace. Companies can serve clients anywhere and schedule calls or virtual video conversations. Meetings can be held in person and include people located elsewhere, by using tools like Google Hangouts or Zoom. Similarly, companies interviewing candidates for a job don’t need to spend money flying them in, but instead can schedule virtual interviews.
There are new ways of communicating within companies, day-to-day, as well. Gone are the days of just emailing or faxing. Now, companies use internal instant messengers (ex: Microsoft Lync), wiki sites, CRMs, and virtual bulletin boards (ex: Slack), and more.
Previously, a new business would start out of someone’s home office, or it’d require the founders to procure office space, which could potentially be very expensive. Starting a business is already a very difficult endeavor, but the issue of “where to work” created an even higher barrier to entry. After it outgrows a one-person shop, it’s difficult to get by just working out of your home or garage. Now, because of coworking spaces, that’s no longer an issue. These allow multiple entrepreneurs to rent out short-term space within the same office building.
As of 2017 according to one study, there were 15,500 coworking spaces in the world, which grew from a mere 3 in 2005. This is an immense amount of growth, and indicates how valuable these work
3. The Side Gig
Before, working adults would generally just have one main job and that was it. Some people had multiple jobs, but that was thought of as something to do when you really need to make ends meet. Now, there are many people who have a “side gig,” which allows them to supplement their main income. One study estimated that 37% of adults have a side job.
A side gig can vary from something as straightforward as working at a grocery store on the weekends for some extra cash, to something as unique as collecting and selling vintage dolls. Some even start a business outside of their regular work hours (rather than leaving their main job and dedicating all of their time to it).
The world of work may be changing, but don’t fret — you won’t be left behind. Some of these changes aren’t present in every company or every town. Regardless, it’s always wise to keep up with or be ahead of the times in the workplace.