The world of work is changing. So, what does that mean for your career? And how can you ensure you are ready for the future of work?
The key trends in the workplace of tomorrow are:
- technological change
- increased automation
Which means that you need to be prepared in order to make the most of this shifting professional landscape, and ensure a fulfilling, successful working life.
People will, of course, still need to learn foundational, technical and practical skills in their area of professional interest. Expertise will always be valuable.
However, the changing nature of the workplace means that future professionals also need to make sure they have other strings to their bow, to develop and enhance skills that can respond to and make the most of the working environment as it develops and changes, and as their careers develop alongside.
A changing workplace
It’s predicted that over the next couple of decades, all jobs will see a reduction in time spent completing routine manual tasks and an increase in time spent focusing on people, solving strategic problems and thinking creatively.
The Foundation for Young Australians predicts that by 2030, in comparison to today, workers in all jobs will spend:
- almost 100 per cent more time solving problems
- 41 per cent more time on critical thinking and judgement
- 17 per cent more time using verbal communication and interpersonal skills.
What might this look like? Well, let’s take the example of a civil engineer.
Increased automation and digital technology integration will mean that routine tasks like setting rosters and specifying blueprints will take less time. Future civil engineers will spend more of their time interacting with others and making strategic decisions. That’s things like reviewing projects with architects, clients and developers, and analysing and interpreting information to find solutions to problems, modify portfolios and develop company strategy.
Getting the right skills
So the key skills – alongside expert knowledge – that people need to develop to thrive in the future workforce are:
The future workplace is also going to be more flexible, more fluid. Chances are you’ll work for several different clients and companies over your career, and may even work for more than one simultaneously. This means that developing self-resourcefulness, time-management skills and an entrepreneurial mindset are also important for future workers.
Embracing the tech revolution
The other area that will change the workplace is technology. Digital technologies will affect almost every type of work in the future, changing how work is done and what workers will spend their time doing.
That doesn’t mean everyone has to hold an information technology degree. Familiarity with technology and the capacity to learn and keep up with technology will be of value in any career. Foundation tech skills is something all uni degrees will set you up with.
The Foundation for Young Australians predicts that the growing use of digital learning tools will change how teachers do their jobs in the future. By 2030, they will be spending more time using digital technology to make classroom education an increasingly interactive and student-centred experience and facilitating self-directed learning, often via technological tools.
One of the megatrends identified by the CSIRO in its report Tomorrow’s Digitally Enabled Workforce is that digital technology and the new world of ‘platform economics’ is changing employment markets and organisational structures. Jobs of the future are likely to be more flexible and connected, and technology will allow for previously impossible levels of collaboration, connection and communication.
Which brings us back to those transferable communication and interpersonal skills.
Building an all-round education
These trends – technological change, increased automation, globalisation and flexibility – will determine the skills you’ll need to succeed in the workplace of the future. As the Foundation for Young Australians states, “Rather than responding to automation by choosing the ‘right’ job, young people need to acquire the ‘right’ skills that allow them to succeed in an automated and globalised workplace.”
That’s where Charles Sturt University comes in. All our courses will provide you with both the foundational knowledge and the most up-to-date practices in your professional field, plus countless practical skills to make your mark in your industry.
And you’ll also develop the transferable skills that will future proof your career in a changing workplace.
Collaboration, communication and problem-solving are key parts of all our courses. You’ll also use digital learning technologies, whether studying on campus or online.