The workplace as we know it is changing. Employers will need to adjust how they conduct business in order to better recruit and maintain qualified candidates. The new workplace will likely be different then what was experienced in the past. The world is moving into a faster paced high-tech and human orientated environment where all hands will need to be on deck. The major labor and cultural trends are defined below.
Businesses will have to learn how to be flexible and adjust to these changes in the market and workplace. They will be forced to change or perish under the crushing weight of a declining educational system, an aging population and new advancements. The changes are likely to swing into effect in 2010 when the problems become more apparent and realized by corporate executives.
Those workers who are most likely to be advantaged by the situation are those that have earned a college degree or who have entered specialized trade schools. The unskilled and underemployed may find that there are few jobs available for them and those that are available pay sub-standard wages.
Trend 1: Labor Shortage:
“Labor-short companies are increasingly willing to accommodate employees’ desire for more flexible scheduling, evidenced by the growing number of firms offering telecommuting, flex-time, and core hours (Challenger, 2000).”
Starting around 2012 the Baby Boomers will be leaving the employment market in droves and the wont be enough 25-40 year olds to take their place. Even though the younger generation should be large it will create labor shortages in the market. This may drive up wages and require the loosening of immigrants in order to fill the gap.
Trend 2: High Technology
Jobs will become increasing complex. Computers, cell phones, networks, complex robots, machinery, etc… will all be designed for speed and efficiency. The U.S.’s best chance of maintaining business superiority is to have a highly technologically advanced workplace with maximum productivity and efficiency.
Many blue collar jobs are likely to be lost to the new technology. Those jobs that will remain in the blue collar sector will decline in value (due to oversupply of under skilled workers) while the highly skilled jobs will increase in value (due to an under-supply of skilled workers).
For those who have a high level of education and skills they will no longer be bound by the physical requirements of their jobs. Therefore, many of them can work from home, stay home more often or work non-traditional hours. More workers will be freed from their traditional 9:00 am to 5:00 pm responsibilities.
Trend 3: More Women and Minorities
Women college graduates are increasing while male college graduates are decreasing. We will also be experiencing the highly skilled second and third generation children of immigrants. These children of immigrants will have college degrees and will enter into the workforce in jobs not experienced by their parents.
It is also possible to find that the Hispanic culture takes more gripe on American society. Due to international treaties with other American countries (i.e. South American countries) and increases of home grown Latino culture of urban centers many of traditions and culture icons of American culture will become Latinized.