There can be no doubt about the fact that the face of business is changing at so rapid a pace, that some aspects of it may be almost unrecognisable to us in as little as a decade.
Businesses today vary of course in the extent to which they have embraced information technology; some industries are built upon being at the forefront of the latest, whilst others continue to coast along using their old, tried and tested methods of working but the fact remains that the way people use the internet is changing.
Flexibility equals security
Take for example the fact that young people under the age of 18 are among the least likely to use email as a means of communication. This is a good indicator that email is increasingly being seen as obsolete as an effective means of communication. Instead, cloud messaging continues to grow as the preferred method of communication due to its ability to link all devices within a network and free people from site-based communication technologies.
As Millennials begin to enter a workplace which in some cases is still committed to using outmoded methods of communication, organisation, storage, and processing, many of which will be completely unfamiliar or irrelevant to them, these methods will become more obviously outmoded and these same young employees who do not have the same associations or habits with regard to dated communications which are held by their seniors, will be confounded and likely frustrated by the customs which linger.
The slower or less secure methods of working will continue to be dropped by those entering the workforce, in favour of the fastest, the safest, and the most convenient. This could mean complete digitization and probably an almost total reliance on cloud computing.
Home workers usher in a new age
The development and improved reliability of technology has also had an impact in the amount of individuals choosing to conduct their work from home; either via an agreement with their employer or as a freelancer.
For freelancers, finding work, promoting their services and managing their workload from the comfort of their own home has become more convenient than dealing with a morning commute and of course it makes financial sense for businesses to use freelancers both in terms of expanding their stable of talent and saving money on the costs of employment.
The figures for the growth in those working from home in the UK have risen to previously unseen levels and in 2014 there were no less than 4.2 million people working out of their own homes; this is no less than 13.9% of the total workforce.
With numbers predicted to rise exponentially and people keen to benefit from the perceived benefits of a work-from-home lifestyle, the office of the future may not in fact be an office…it could be many, many thousands of them, creating a global workforce each responsible for their own data security and financial management.