5 Trends In The Workplace For 2018

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays from P&T! We hope everyone had a safe & blessed holiday season.

This week check out an excerpt from our friends at Forbes Magazine examining the top 10 workplace trends of 2018! The brand new year is approaching, so it always the perfect chance to set new trends & goals for yourself within the workplace. The article otherwise sheds light on some pretty insightful stuff.

Check out the first five (of the 10 total) below as they explore what you can expect at the strategic level in 2018. Check out the other five right here!

1. Leaders encourage more human interaction. Companies will continue to promote their workspaces and design them to facilitate interpersonal relationships between employees. IBM stopped their remote-working program, pushing thousands of employees from core groups that support their brands back to the office. Apple's innovative new facility is designed to promote worker relationships, idea sharing and collaboration. Google Cafés are designed to encourage interactions between employees across departments and teams. All three companies have found that when employees bump into each other in physical environments, it sparks creativity and relationship building that leads to positive outcomes. One study found that moments of conversation between co-workers increases performance by 20% and another study uncovered that 72% of employees who have a best friend at work are more satisfied with their job. In our research, in partnership with Randstad, we found that Gen Z's and millennials choose in-person conversations over using technology and prefer corporate offices over telecommuting. While technology can make us more efficient, and feel highly connected to one another, it will never replace face-to-face conversations. Leaders who encourage personal connections will have more committed, satisfied and productive workers. Researchers Mahdi Roghanizad and Vanessa K. Bohns found that one face-to-face conversation is the equivalent to thirty-four emails. You will see more companies pull back their telecommuting programs next year and leaders who put more emphasis on phone calls, video conferencing and in-person meetings.

2. The next wave of learning credentials. One of the most disrupted industries is education, with more third parties offering courses, credentials and certifications than ever before. There is now an abundance of online courses provided by LinkedIn Learning, Coursera, edX, Udemy, Udacity, The Khan Academy and others. Pew Research reports that self-directed learning is driving the need for new credentialing systems. More employees will be accepting different types of credentials as they seek to build diverse talent pools and expand their reach. Almost three out of every four adults agrees that individuals have the responsibility to make sure that the workforce has the right skills and education to be successful in today's economy compared to only 52% of colleges and 49% of employers. Younger generations are starting to resist the traditional degree due to the ever increasing cost of tuition, which grew by nine percent from last year for four-year public schools. Some are avoiding college altogether and are pursuing these free or low cost online courses that provide enough education on important skills to get by. As companies continue to accept non-traditional credentials, students will be able to avoid debt and study at their own convenience, without fear of unemployment.

3. Companies focus on upskilling and retraining current workers. While the political discussion is focused on bringing manufacturing jobs back to America, and the news media continues to publish articles on how automation will eliminate jobs, we should really be focused on the growing skills gap. There are currently 6.2 million job openings in America that are unfilled, which is up from 5.6 million during the same time in 2016. Companies can't find the right workers, that have the right skills, at the right time, which has slowed growth in the economy. The National Federation of Independent Business reports that 45% of small businesses were unable to find qualified candidates to fill job openings and 60% of all employers have job openings that stay vacant for twelve weeks or longer, which costs them $800,000 annually in lost productivity and advertising fees. In our current economy, change is happening faster than ever before and the half life of a learned skill is a mere fi