The world of work is always changing, even more rapidly, especially in this era of technological advancements.
Ideally, the future of work refers to a forecast of how work will evolve in the coming years in terms of who does the work, how the work is done, and where and when work is done. Predictions are based majorly on shifts in culture, technology, society, and generations. If COVID-19 is anything to go by, we have witnessed the way we work revolving rapidly before our eyes in the last two years. From the experience, it is clear that the future workplace winners are those that will prepare today for how the future of work is likely to impact their organizations in the years to come. One of the ways to do this is through data and analytics to inform better decisions. So, what role can data collection play in helping organizations prepare for the future of work?
The role of data collection in enabling the future of work
Data collection in the future of work would refer to the process of gathering, measuring, testing, and evaluating the information on different future work variables such as integrated systems, adoption of new technologies, hybrid work, and more. This will help understand the future of the work landscape better, make data-backed decisions, and have enhanced forecasts for the future of work. Additionally, tracking data will play an important role in piloting and testing the effectiveness of different workplace solutions.
However, for data to make sense and fulfill its purpose, it is important to ensure accurate, consistent, high-quality, and standardized data. Organizations have to pay attention not only to the data collection methods that they use but also invest in data security and agile analytical tools. You can ensure diverse, accurate, and reliable data by making critical fields required, pre-populating data collection forms, and using conditional logic. Data security can be enhanced through data encryption and password protection to name a few. In addition, Knowledge graphs can help organizations to add context and depth to AI techniques like machine learning. This aids in transforming data collected into information and insights that can support decision-making.
Here is how data collection will apply to different elements of the future of work.
Enabling hybrid and remote work
Hybrid model is growing at a rapid rate, especially after the pandemic. Employees want to continue enjoying working from home, but also have the opportunity to work in the office for camaraderie and collaboration. Using smart technology and IoT to collect data, businesses can study how employees utilize office space. This data can help in designing workspaces that cater to different work styles. This could mean creating different seating areas such as lounges and café-style areas to promote relationship building for better collaboration. In addition, this data can inform the decision to create additional meeting areas that create an equal video conference experience for both remote workers and those present in person.
Understanding future talent needs
There is an emergence of new and developing positions that are critical for running a business today to ensure preparedness for the future. Forward-thinking organizations are already staffing these positions such as AI specialists, automation recruiters and more. In addition, automation is performing activities that professionals such as customer service and management staff once did. However, organizations need to understand that the employees that are being replaced still have skills that can contribute to the future growth of the company. Rather than letting them go, they can be retrained and their skills repurposed in other areas of the business.
Collecting talent marketplace data in terms of talent demand and supply can give insights on the changing priorities in the market. This can help identify knowledge gaps in the workforce, enabling proactivity in reskilling and upskilling employees.
Enhancing workplace experience
Workplace experience has become a major focus for employees and is likely to shape the future of work. For employers who want to retain talents longer as well as improve employee engagement, enhancing employee experience is paramount now and in the future. Data collection through employee engagement surveys and group-wide assessments can help identify core pain points as well as individual needs and wants. Employees are looking for personalized experiences in the future. Organizations can use analytics to help personalize employees’ experiences in the workplace.
The world of work is always changing, even more rapidly, especially in this era of technological advancements. For businesses to survive the next chapter, it is important to start preparing today. This is only possible by keeping an eye on emerging trends. Moreover, collecting data will help identify gaps and take actionable steps accordingly. Done right, data collection can help identify talent gaps, ensure improved workplace experiences as well as enable different workstyles among other aspects of work.