The future of work (my predictions from 6 years ago)…


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I wrote this 6 years ago and many of it is still relevant today but I was a little ahead of my time in terms of some of my predictions!

With a background in recruitment; RPO and resource management, over the past 10 years I have designed and implemented successful end to end attraction, selection, retention and redeployment processes. So it probably comes as no surprise that I have spent a little time daydreaming, thinking about or imagining what the future workforce might look like.
In the past year or so, The future of the job market is becoming clear to me. The impacts of social media and online are exciting and yet I believe candidates and employers are not prepared for the advances that technology will enable in the short future. I remember signing up to LinkedIn over 6 years ago, it was fairly easy and straightforward yet 6 years on, people are still warming to this professional social networking tool that allows you to connect with people you have worked with or met in your travels.
They better warm up fast… The future of the job market leverages all the existing tools out there, social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+) and Recruitment CRMs (Jobscience, Taleo, PageUp, Cornerstone) with a final twist which I hope to see soon: gamification of skills and aptitude benchmarking… Yeah it’s pretty obvious that employers will soon layer your resume with your online profiles, klout score and other digital input to create a comprehensive view of an individual, to then analyse suitability for roles. It’s obvious that your social network will become part of your value proposition, particularly for sales roles! This is exciting as the data becomes more rich, the tools can start to provide proactive insight into role suitability of particular candidates.
What is less obvious is that there is an amazing opportunity that exists between the existing tools and online profiles to gather tremendous insight into the global population in terms of their aptitude, skills and proficiency. This is where we will start to gather real data and insight into skills, proficiency, personality and aptitude… This will start to change the way we hire and mobilize our people.
In a few short years, job titles, job descriptions and the workforce as we know it will be forced to grow up as we reap productivity benefits from new technology and new ways of thinking. With rapid changes in work demands comes the need for a new understanding of who people are, what they are good at and what they could be good at.
Imagine logging into a social networking site that allows you to test your apple development skills against the worlds best, or your typing speed, your excel abilities, your personality type compared to other people in the same field. LinkedIn has recently launched the endorse Skills & Expertise function for crowd validated skills and experience, but this isn’t very scientific, it is still reliant on reputation and provides no benchmarking against other professionals with the same skills or expertise. While the thought of having your proficiency levels on show for all to see sounds a little disarming right now, so did the thought of a public resume to many people just 6 years ago!
It will probably start as an employer database that HR and Resource Managers have access to, to better understand the skills and capability of their workforce for increased workforce mobility and agility, however I think in a short few years we will see public social skills benchmarking sites start to become a normal part of the recruitment, selection and redeployment/resource allocation processes.
Role agnostic teams are starting to pop up in design and consulting firms, the success of these teams is underpinned by a deep and comprehensive understanding of each of the individual’s involved… Their qualifications, their personality types, their strengths, their motivators.
The future of our workforce is changing and the way we understand, profile, benchmark, identify and engage with talent is changing too.
What is your business doing to stay competitive in this space?

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