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How Organizations and Individuals Will Succeed in the Changing World of Work

Why a talent management structure geared towards career development is key to nurturing the organizational and individual agility required to succeed in business. 

The world of work is changing rapidly and the requirements of the working life of tomorrow are likely to be very different. Jobs particularly susceptible to automation include transportation and logistics, office and administrative support, and industrial production.  

Consider, for example, how many people drive buses, taxis, and trains. The technology is already here for those vehicles to drive themselves. Once that’s implemented on a large scale, millions of people will have outmoded skills.   

Similar cycles have occurred in the past--jobs become obsolete due to technology evolution and new jobs arise to fill the employment gap. The particular challenge now is that the new jobs likely to emerge will require a more complex skill set than those being lost. We are already seeing this talent mismatch in play.  

Despite high unemployment and job seekers flooding the market, many businesses cannot find appropriately-skilled talent. The new 2019 Talent Shortage Survey shows global talent shortages have reached an all-time high of 54 percent since ManpowerGroup began this research in 2006. This trend is likely to accelerate as technology continues to transform work.  

With the world of work changing so rapidly, companies can no longer sustain competitive advantage through a static business model or set of technologies. Rather, the path to success lies in an organization’s ability to both cope with change and to actively pursue the opportunities that arise from it. To stay relevant, organizations need to be agile

The most critical skill for any employee will be the ability to continuously learn and develop. Individuals can no longer expect job security because of their tenure. When conditions change and the business needs new skill sets, having been there for 20 years will not matter. The job security of tomorrow will come from an employee’s ability to adapt and acquire new skills – and organizations have a critical role in this regard.  

The changing world of work requires a new type of social contract, one built around career development. In order to attract and retain high-value employees, organizations will need to shift from being job providers to being career enablers. Organizations that embed career development opportunities into their culture are better able to advance their competitive capabilities as a whole while enabling individual workers to stay relevant professionally. 

It’s time for organizations to acknowledge the fact that the context of employment has changed. Business requirements are not static. Businesses need a continuous skills refresh to stay relevant and individuals should be looking for employment security within themselves, not the organization. Creating a mutually beneficial culture of career development will enable both the individual and the organization to adapt to the changing world of work.