Acas has compiled a report into the effects of technology in the workplace. There are no exciting revelations, just thoughts penned to paper but it's still food for thought.
Essentially, focus should be on automating tasks rather than entire jobs and on broadening the skills set of the workforce. It is thought that more creative, technical and interpersonal skills will be highly sought after in the future. This is something for employees to consider and perhaps for employers to look at incorporating into their succession plans.
The North is thought to be more prone to suffering rather than benefitting from the advances in technology (Mansfield and Sunderland are expecting to see job cuts of 29% by 2030). Whereas financial and technical hubs mostly centered in the capital are expected to thrive.
It is predicted that half of workers will be working remotely from 2020 which is a huge shift in a short space of time. Thanks to technology, this is a realistic possibility and can be a real plus for many employees. However, does bringing work into the home really provide a benefit or does it bring with it the shackles? With a third of workers not being able to switch off and 40% checking their emails at least 5 times outside of working hours, is this a healthy way to live?
Technology has, does and always will create benefits and problems for society. Having 24/7 access to our emails does not mean we have to use them 24/7 and employers should be mindful not to put pressure on staff to do this. Having automation integrated into the workplace does not have to mean job losses but can mean less time spent on the boring bits and more time for creativity.
You may struggle to change what is coming but you do have a choice as to how you deal with it. Find the positives in the negatives and find a way to make it work for you.
New technology is a double-edged sword. It creates modern workplace problems, such as isolation and work intensification, at the same rate as it creates efficiency gains and laboursaving advances.