“Within the next decade – and we are already seeing this happening to some degree – the traditional employer/employee relationship will be largely a thing of the past,” says Georgina Barrick, MD of Cassel&Co, Insource ICT and IT Edge – the specialised recruitment agencies of ADvTECH Resourcing focusing on Finance, Accounting and IT.

Barrick says global research has identified 4 major trends that will impact the world of work over the next 15 years:

1 Flexibility

Globally, we are seeing a continuation of the growing trend towards short term work.

According to the International Labour Organisation’s ‘The Changing Nature of Jobs’, 75% of the global workforce is currently employed on temporary or short-term contracts.

It is believed that by 2030, workers will work ‘with’, not ‘for’, companies and will work with multiple ‘clients’ simultaneously, joining skills guilds, rather than becoming employees.

The focus will be on knowledge workers, who can do their jobs anywhere and at any time. This idea of workers as entrepreneurs will promote flexibility and autonomy – and will benefit high-skill workers.

Lifelong learning

Already, the idea that you study and then use what you’ve learned to follow a career at one company throughout your life has become obsolete. Lifelong learning, where workers constantly reskill or renew skills every 5 years, is becoming the norm.

Quality vs Quantity

The emphasis is shifting away from chasing money at all costs to a focus on critical values, like work/life balance, happiness and fulfillment. In future, there will increasingly be a shift away from the culture of ‘overwork’ towards a system where work is enmeshed in life – and reward is based on expertise and results, and not on job title or length of service.

Technological innovation

Over the next 15 years, it’s predicted that rapid technological innovation will promote 24/7 work performed by employees in different geographic locations and time zones. The traditional notion of a ‘corner office’ as we know it today will become obsolete as workers work remotely, hot desk and collaborate in ways we can’t yet imagine.

Ultimately what all of this means, is that individuals need to become more adaptable, and be able to manage their careers with greater resilience and flexibility.

They also need to become adept at building their personal brands and selling themselves on a fluid job market. Reputation management, customer relations and negotiation will be key to the worker of the future. Additionally, they need to take responsibility for lifelong learning and regular upskilling, with a good dash of entrepreneurship thrown in.