Many of the assumptions made about the modern workplace are about to be thrown out the window. What has worked in the past may no longer be the case as technology continues its rapid advance. Young workers have drastically different attitudes and expectations that previous generation. The workplace is changing, and it’s up to today’s businesses and organizations to stay ahead of those trends. This may require a change in company culture, or it may mean adopting a new piece of technology. Sometimes it takes a complete overhaul of everything you thought you knew about a well-functioning work environment. Whatever the reason, here are several things you can expect will take priority in the workplace in the near future.

Work Flexibility

The traditional view is for employees to clock in at 9, clock out at 5, and spend each weekday in the office. That view is perhaps the biggest change happening for the modern workplace. In fact, coming into the office at all isn’t always necessary. Due to advances made in mobile technology and the cloud, it’s much easier for employees to do their jobs from home or wherever they happen to be.

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Remote working is the name of the game now, and virtual teams are becoming much more commonplace. In fact, in some organizations, teams are able to work together easily even when they’re across the country. The same work flexibility also applies to the work week. Some businesses have adopted a 4-day work week, while others have no set hours or even vacation days.

Big Data Reliance

More and more businesses are starting to figure out just how valuable big data can be. Going even further, big data will likely become a common element of every workplace within the next decade. Big data affects how businesses run, what they focus on, and how they implement changes.

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Whether it’s through their own analytics solution or a hosted Hadoop service, businesses are still figuring out the best way to collect, analyze, and utilize the findings they uncover. That also means businesses making smarter decision regarding how the workplace is run. Big data has even had an effect on some of the other items on this list, placing them in positions of prominence in terms of future workplace expectations.

Health Focus

Organizations are caring more for the health and wellbeing of their employees than ever before, and that is reflected in workplace changes. Businesses have discovered that the happier and healthier their workers are, the better they perform their jobs.

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With that in mind, many companies have put greater focus on providing perks and benefits that contribute to improving these factors. It’s one of the reasons businesses are embracing greater work flexibility (as discussed above). It’s also what could lead to more workplace changes, such as providing access to an office gym. This greater interest in employees health may even lead to using wearable technology to keep a closer eye on each worker’s wellbeing.

Promoting Education

The skill sets needed in the modern workplace are diverse, and many businesses find that workers aren’t fully prepared after graduating. As a result, expect that in the future companies will promote their own degree programs that are designed to train workers with skills specifically to the company’s own goals and culture. This may be the case even for entry-level positions that normally wouldn’t need specialized skills. Recent graduates will then be able to jump straight from college to a career without any bumps in the road.

Whether it means streamlining the HR process, adopting technologies like converged infrastructure, or promoting a new type of work week, these workplace changes represent a massive shift in what is normally expected. Trends like the ones listed will call for big changes at almost every level of the modern organization, but they’re changes that will lead to greater productivity and job satisfaction. As companies accept what these changes mean, they’ll place themselves in a much better position to capitalize on the trend, resulting in more success down the road. Obviously not every future change will be right for every business, but with a little bit of experimentation, they’ll be able to find a way to implement the right improvements and take advantage of the direction all workplaces are point toward.

How do you think the expectations of young workers today differ from those of 10, 20, or 30 years ago? Let us know in the comments.

~ Rick Delgado