Having a decades-long career can get you used to the way things work and becoming resistant to change. If you are seeking a job in a professional, managerial, executive or technical (PMET) role, there are a few workplace tech trends you should take note of.
Cloud-based Collaboration Tools
Be it from home or a cafe down the street, mobile- and cloud-based technologies allow people to work from just about anywhere with internet access. For example, collaboration apps on your phone allow you to work while on the move, and any change you make will be synced over the internet to a centralised version. No longer are you tethered to your cubicle, because everything you need is a few finger taps away.
What can you do? Working off the cloud can take some getting used to. Cloud-based collaboration tools like Office 365 and Google Suite have become almost a necessity in organisations where employees frequently share files and calendars, while personal cloud-based mobile applications like Evernote and Asana can help employees be more productive by allowing them to take notes and manage their project teams on the go.
Workplace Communication Technologies
A recent Microsoft study revealed that 62 percent of Singaporeans consider themselves to be mobile workers. To keep up with their growing demands, we can expect more organisations to implement communication technologies that enable mobile and remote methods of working, like video-conferencing and instant communication tools such as WebEx, Skype for Business and Salesforce Chatter. These enterprise communication tools often enable workers to unify multiple modes of communication — email, video chat, audio calls, screensharing and instant messaging — within the organisation.
What can you do? Older jobseekers who may be unfamiliar with these tools can try out some similar tools that are consumer-facing — like WhatsApp, WeChat or Facebook Messenger — to get a hang of the dos and don’ts. This could also be something to get your children’s help with as they may be more familiar with these tools.
Automation — of Both Mechanical and Knowledge Work
Much has been said of the impact of Industry 4.0 and “smart factories” on jobs. However, it is important to note that while some jobs can be automated, there are also new positions being created. For example, the job of a machine operator at a manufacturing plant may become automated but with experience and upskilling, the same employee could find a new role as production planner, overseeing the machines. Even though the healthcare industry is rapidly adopting robots and assistive technology for treatment, some jobs like those of a physiotherapist or nurses are not going away any time soon. With mundane elements of their work automated, these professionals will have more capacity to provide personal care for patients.
What can you do? Other industries too will see similar opportunities. Look for programmes that provide you the right training to excel at these jobs — be it that of a physiotherapist or a supervisory role in manufacturing. Check out WSG’s Professional Conversion Programmes to undergo skills conversion to move into a new role or even a new sector.