Flexibility is a new mandate for the future of work- Unilever

Flexible working models become a critical theme for future of work
In India, a young college graduate is six times as likely to be unemployed as someone illiterate. This is forcing to be demographics to become self-employed.

The future of work is the rapid transformation of employee needs, their roles, and the shape of the workforce. 

There was a time when a person would get a job, work for the same company all their life, and then retire. Then the internet came along and made it much easier to shop around for new jobs, and more people started to have careers that encompassed full-time stints with a succession of different employers.

“For employers, flexibility is one of the ways you get greater workforce participation, which helps to build better economies” Morag Lynagh, Global Future of Work Director, Unilever.

Solving the challenges of this new flexible world of work will require new thinking and new solutions. Here are three innovative ideas already bringing the future to life:

  1. EMBRACE THE PIXELATED WORKFORCE: The Covid-19 pandemic not only accelerated trends such as four-day weeks and remote arrangements but also drove growth in the number of people who choose to work independently as contractors or freelancers.
  2. THE RISE OF THE INTERNAL TALENT MARKETPLACE: For workers who want to develop the competencies that will give them a more flexible career path – and for organizations who want to improve retention – a new genre of software known as ‘internal talent marketplaces’ has become a hot topic. These AI-powered platforms, which match employees with opportunities within the company, not only draw potentially overlooked talent through the organization, they can also enable new managerial models that give staff heightened flexibility over what they work on.
  3. IS THE ‘SKILLS PASSPORT’ THE FUTURE OF RECRUITMENT?: According to the World Economic Forum (WEF), 50 percent of workers will need to reskill by 2025. This is particularly the case in the industrial world, where automation is changing skill requirements at a notably fast rate, and where reskilling is required at a considerable scale. A glimpse into how this may be achieved is offered by the WEF’s Global Lighthouse Network, a programme that identifies cutting-edge factories around the world. Naturally, these factories are deploying the advanced technologies of the so-called Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR), such as robotics, AI, and blockchain – and they’re also finding smart ways to develop their employees’ skills.

In South Asia, Africa, and much of Latin South America, there’s an extraordinary shortage of jobs, even for educated youth.

In India, a young college graduate is six times as likely to be unemployed as someone illiterate. This is forcing to be demographics to become self-employed.

These stark shifts are one reason why the ‘future of work’ has become such an urgent conversation. As businesses strive to attract and retain talent, they are reassessing traditional thinking around people and teams.

A theme that has become paramount in these conversations is finding ways to make work more flexible. Recently, Unilever shared a detailed report which can be read with a click here.


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