The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated numerous trends that have changed the workplace and the economy. The shift to remote and hybrid work was widely felt, and the number of coworking spaces increased incredibly, with 18,700 coworking spaces worldwide now.
These dynamics are continuing to make work more digital, flexible, and autonomous than before, with positive repercussions on both business performance and workers’ personal lives.
Let’s look closely at five emerging trends revitalizing and revolutionizing the job market and the workplace in general.
1. The shift toward remote and hybrid work
According to recent statistics, more than one in every four Americans works remotely. On top of that, 40% believe they are more productive when working from home than working from an office. 16% of companies are fully remote, and many more are shifting towards a hybrid work model, combining remote and in-office staff.
This shift results in company benefits, such as increased employee retention, improved access to a global talent pool, and cost savings on office space.
As for workers, the spread of remote work means significantly improving their work-life balance. This new work model allows them to dedicate more time to family and other non-work activities without reducing their weekly workloads or harming their overall level of productivity.
2. Company retreats and the increased focus on employee wellbeing
Company retreats are becoming an increasingly popular activity. The term refers to a company-organized trip during which employees can engage in leisure, team-building activities, and brainstorming sessions. This can have multiple positive effects.
First, workers can take a break from the daily office routine. This helps them reduce their level of stress, recharge their batteries and feel more motivated once they’re back to their everyday work life.
Second, these retreats can reinforce the bonds between workers, the workforce, and upper management. This positively affects the team’s ability to achieve common goals and be driven by a shared mission.
Third, alternating entertainment and productive activities during a corporate retreat can boost creativity and allow the team to see things from a new perspective, which may positively affect their ability to find solutions and develop helpful ideas.
Corporate retreats are part of a broader trend toward employee well-being. This is becoming increasingly important in the workplace. Nowadays, employees see this factor as increasingly important when deciding which employer to work for and whether or not to remain at their current company. Companies investing more in employee well-being will increase employee retention rates.
3. The expansion of the gig economy
As we speak, 36% of American workers participate in freelance work. An increasing number of people no longer see work as regular company employees. More and more of them now see how many opportunities exist for those who want to work as freelancers, gig workers, and small entrepreneurs.
Freelancer platforms allow professionals and individuals with specific talents of expertise to sell their services online quickly.
Programmers, writers, digital marketers, and designers are just some of the most in-demand categories for these platforms. The same goes for those who want to earn money by teaching new skills. Nowadays, musicians, cooks, and experts on various topics can create pre-recorded lessons and sell them on e-learning platforms.
The Internet also provides more opportunities to those who want to sell services outside the web and can now easily find clients thanks to several apps and websites. Examples of this trend are ridesharing, food delivery, and handyman services.
4. The increasing popularity of coworking spaces
As remote and gig work see their numbers increase, so do those businesses that offer flexible and independent workers spaces where they can work and interact. These venues are known as coworking spaces (also known as shared workspaces), and they typically offer desks, chairs, and all the necessary office equipment that a remote worker or freelancer might need.
The popularity of coworking increased dramatically over the last few years and is still growing, with the number of global coworking space options expected to more than double by 2024.
While many enjoy working from home, others want to avoid remote work and freelancing to be an experience that disconnects them from daily socialization, networking, and professional development. Coworking spaces create a sense of community and allow workers to stay connected to the outside world, even if they’re not working from a regular office.
5. The trend toward upskilling
The job market is becoming increasingly fluid. The days when you would learn a profession and do the same activity for your entire life are ending. In many sectors, remaining competitive requires constantly learning new skills to adapt to new technologies, trends, and evolving client demand.
Upskilling has become a regular activity for most workers, whether they are regular employees, remote workers, and freelancers, and it’s increasingly common for them to attend courses entirely online, which allows them to study more flexibly and from the comfort of their own home.