Blog Employers

Working in the future

Employers | 01 March 2019 | Written by Patrick Lootens

The past decade work and employment didn’t evolve much. But within 2 to 3 years changes will be more noticeable. Soon, flexible contracts will account for more than 30% of the work. An intro to the 5 trends in the work of tomorrow.

Working in the future
Five trends in the work of tomorrow1. Multiple employers
Working for more than one employer will become a future certainty. Did you know that today in the UK almost 50% of employees work for more than one employer? Employees expect more today and are more aware that the security of a permanent contract is becoming relative. So, why still work for the same employer forever? Employees of the future will target jobs that offer them experiences or learning opportunities.

2. Predictive force
Companies will give their permanent staff work on the base of peak periods. For example, the weather forecast indicates how many staff are needed in the hospitality or retail sector. Today, analytics and big data put the behaviour of consumers, producers and employees on the map. This way we can forecast the work volume of tomorrow. 

3. No permanent staff
As mentioned above, employers will increasingly need ‘variable’ staff. Opening hours of shops will be extended, people order online and thereby create varying periods of activity. Contributing to the sustainability of work, employees must be flexible. The number of freelancers rises all around the globe. In Belgium we see new initiatives every day that respond to flexible employment.  (Uber is a good example of a company that grew without permanent staff.)
People require more, less, or different work. They want to choose themselves when they work and when not. Every one of us will experience more and less intense work periods.

4. The autonomous employee
There’s a new statute: the autonomous employee. He enjoys more social protection than the independent worker but less than the wage earner. In other words: more independence and less submission without losing social protection!

5. Total or Integral Talent Management
Talent management becomes the most important challenge. A shortage of specific talents and need for flexibility will bring an increase in diversity in cooperation agreements. Integral Talent Management or Total Talent Management is the new HR-challenge. This brings new HR challenges. The organization has to make employees work, plan and account together.
The role of the governmentThe legislation is often the determining factor. The salary cost is a growing problem for many employers. Our model of social security is under pressure. The legislator aims for an increase in employment. Momentarily the sharing economy (Uber or Airbnb) receives back support from the legislator with a new fiscal framework.

Reality is that people will involuntarily work longer due to ageing and the increasing, average life expectancy. On the other hand, the lifespan of companies is declining.

The government, social partners, academics and experienced service providers must search together for new formulas to organize work ‘smarter’

It’s hopeful that the National Labour Council is examining how pilot projects could have a positive impact on the future-oriented labour organization. This should clarify which measures provide a more flexible work organization for example or a better balance between work and personal life and an improved workability in the career for the employee.