20 Trends that Will Shape the Next Decade: Part Two – Social Trends


Part Two of a four-part series on the future of work and the developments impacting contingent workforce management focuses on social trends. This series continues to identify select perspectives contained in the comprehensive “2020 Report – 20 Trends that Will Shape the Next Decade” and other corroborating sources.

The future of work is being molded today by widespread societal changes in government and economics. These changes, however, will not be initiated from the top down as they have in the history of commerce. Rather, they will occur from the bottom up as web/mobile platforms support grassroots change agents, allowing people to build relationships and make informed decisions about economics, politics and social issues. “Social Networks Fuel the Participatory Economy”, says the first trend in the Intuit report’s “Social” segment. As early as four years ago, Pew Research Center identified in a “Social Media in the Workplace” report, the seeds of this trend which have fully blossomed today and manifest in such phenomena as the Human Cloud. The socialization and democratization of labor and its intersection with leading best practices for contingent workforce management is something nextSource workforce specialists are helping SMBs to leverage to great benefit.

“Localism Creates and New Way of Life” says the next trend in the Intuit report’s Social Trends segment. As the workforce swells with Gen Y and Gen Z workers and their embrace of untethered work arrangements, fewer workers will be attracted by roles that don’t allow for at least some degree of remote capability in support of greater work/life balance. The ability to be productive on the job but still available for family, community and friends will continue to grow in significance as a prerequisite for any job seeker. Organizations catering to the localist way of life will have the advantage in sourcing talent over the next decade.

On the other edge of the sword, the blurring of the traditional relationship between employer and employee that comes with Gig Economy and Human Cloud activity is leading to increased personal accountability among workers for their own insurance, retirement and other planning decisions. Traditionally, these considerations were made by institutions like employers and governments. The coming decade will see more “Individuals Shoulder[ing] the Risk Burden”. Smart hiring organizations make resources available to help workers make appropriate decisions about these issues, even if the benefits are not being provided by the hiring organizations themselves.

Lastly, the report notes, “Customers Control the Relationship” and while the report is referring to the shift in power from the business to the consumer, the same is true with respect to how a business sources talent. The transition from “push” to “pull” marketing occurring in the marketplace also applies to how workers access opportunities. Instead of companies having to actively seek candidates, social networking and other online structures put the power into the hands of candidates to decide who they’d like to work for and how to access opportunities within those organizations.

Check back soon for Part Three of this four-part series, where we’ll explore the correlation between the economic trends and how they intersect with workforce management strategy in the next ten years. For consultation on how to prepare your organization for the Future of Work, speak with a workforce specialist today and embrace the social trends.

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