Monday, 22 September 2008
Are we all working comfortably?
Flexible working can mean very many things ... job sharing, flexi-time hours, working from home rather than the traditional office, or working part-time in some way to name just a few. But while work is better regarded nowadays as something people do rather than somewhere people go, in the future work will follow an even more different pattern.
We are already seeing how today's definitions of flexible working allow organisations to employ the best talent even if those people happen to have non-standard circumstances or requirements which would have otherwise previously precluded them because of processes that tried to fit them to a fixed templated work pattern. In the future, working flexibly may also encompass the idea of working timeshared for different employers in a much more widespread way than happens today. The employment market will be far more dynamic and accommodate much more individual preference about the when, how, where and for whom work is done - particularly in academic or administrative work roles.
From the individuals' perspective, their value will not be so much in terms of skills and knowledge but rather their ability to network and maintain links between other people. This networking will be crucial, both with people and with machines that will perform the tasks which people do today.