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Gearing up for the future workplace, today

Ricardo MartinsManaging Director at Cegoc Portugal

Jeanne Meister – partner at Future Workplace, best-selling author of The Future Workplace Experience and keynote speaker at our third Business Transformation Summit – has a vision for the future that urges us to rethink how we do things now.

There has been much discussion in recent years of the ‘2020 workplace’. With 2020 just around the corner, an urgency has taken hold to discard the outdated practices of the past and re-energise our workforce to make sure it is fit for the future.

Much of this urgency comes from the pace of technological change, influencing a stark contrast between the generations. Today’s school and college leavers – sometimes referred to as ‘Gen Z’ – for example, have a totally different understanding of digital technology than the middle-aged ‘Gen X-ers’ or baby boomers.

All of this naturally has an effect on the workplace, and HR managers across the globe are understandably having difficulty keeping up with the rapidity of change.

Luckily, there are visionaries who can put this change into perspective, and Jeanne Meister – a regular contributor to Forbes magazine – is one of them. Her specialised subject is the developing nature of the employee experience; one that engages the modern workforce and appeals to their way of thinking.

“Being employee-centred and digital is about having a new set of consumer-focused and technological skills,” says Jeanne, “as well as a new mindset that is iterative and takes a human-centred approach to creating new solutions.”

This mix of digital with the human touch is very much the focus of Jeanne’s work on the subject. But what exactly does she mean by ‘employee experience’?

Quote from Jeanne Meister, Founding Partner at Future Workplace: “Simply stated, my definition of ‘employee experience’ is this: the sum total of all the experiences employees have with their employer over the duration of their relationship with their employer, from hiring to becoming alumni.”

This can be anything from on-boarding to professional development, as well as the day-to-day practice of working in your chosen environment.

Employee experience is an area of increasing interest to organisations.

“In a study with, entitled The Active Job Seeker Dilemma, we found that 83% of HR leaders said ‘employee experience’ is either important or very important to their organisation’s success, and that they are investing more in training (56%), improving their work spaces (51%), and giving more rewards (47%). Companies are also driven to focus on creating a compelling employee experience as the war for talent heats up,” says Jeanne.

Indeed, this ‘war’ is fast becoming very heated as global companies compete within a relatively small talent pool of in-demand individuals. And it’s not just those already in jobs that need attention. The way organisations recruit should chime with modern trends and thinking if they are to attract the best people.

One of these new trends is the emergence of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in both recruitment and in the workplace

“Visionary HR leaders will increasingly consider chatbots as another co-worker orienting and training them, and helping the rest of the team understand how to work with them. The end result will be that employees are able to work smarter and do more of what makes humans unique, such as complex problem solving, critical thinking and creativity – the top three skills deemed essential by the World Economic Forum.”

The whole topic of the future of work is rich in prediction, but it is clear that today’s workplace problems require creative and sometimes risky solutions. And Jeanne Meister has plenty of those solutions to share.

Jeanne Meister gave a talk at Cegos' 2018 Business Transformation Summit. Check out our highlights page for reflections on the day, in-depth articles and more

Banner: click to read the highlights page on the 2018 Business Transformation Summit, Cegos' annual event featuring international speakers on The power of Experience

Written by

Ricardo Martins

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