The workplace culture has changed dramatically over the last couple of years. Employees have become more vocal about their dissatisfaction with their working environments, and many have resigned for different reasons. This phenomenon, called The Great Resignation, a phrase coined by a business management professor, is expected to be one of the most prominent workplace trends in 2022. While widespread resignation has captured headlines, it's only one of many trends that will shape the office space in the year to come.
Workplace trends of 2022
The global workforce is changing at a rapid pace. Technology improvements and flexible work environments are allowing a paradigm shift in how people work. This is causing uncertainty for some people, but it also presents opportunities for employers as well as people looking for work.
These changes represent the dawn of a new era in the workplace, and for people thinking about making a change, a time to prepare for an unprecedented year to come. BBB looks at some of the workplace trends predicted to be the most prominent in 2022.
The Great Resignation
The Great Resignation has caused concern among business owners. Employees are resigning in droves to pursue better opportunities, leaving business owners scrambling to find solutions.
In 2021, 3.9 million employees were resigning per month on average, and this trend is likely to continue in the year to come, as more and more people realize they don't have to tolerate poor working conditions or be in a position where they don't feel they are able to make a valuable contribution to the company.
Workers now expect a certain level of fairness and equality from their employers. They want to feel valued and appreciated, and don't want to sacrifice their personal lives for their jobs. The current climate has forced many business owners to reevaluate their workplace culture and adapt in order to retain their best employees.
Increased automation of managerial tasks
One of the biggest workplace trends expected to take place in 2022 is the automation of managerial tasks such as scheduling, approving reports, and monitoring direct reports’ completion of tasks. Automation has been used to increase productivity over the last few decades, and in the wake of the pandemic, it is being employed even further, particularly when it comes to managerial duties.
With more tasks being automated, employees can shift their focus to more valuable projects. Businesses facing staffing shortages can also benefit from automation, which allows them to maintain a similar work output with fewer employees.
Hybrid work models are still preferred by employees
After the workplace changes brought on by the pandemic, many people are looking for jobs that offer a better work-life balance. In particular, they are gravitating towards hybrid work models, where they can work at home on some days and in the office on others.
In fact, not only do 83% of workers prefer a hybrid work model, but 63% of high-growth companies have already adopted a hybrid workforce model.
Hybrid work models are not without their challenges, however. They require a lot of communication, and they can be challenging to manage.
Returning to the office will be a reality for struggling businesses
While hybrid work models may be the popular choice for employees and a growing number of businesses, a return to the traditional office will likely be a reality for many struggling companies in the year to come.
Many businesses simply don't have the necessary resources to maintain hybrid or remote work models, despite employee preference. Depending on the situation, employees may be asked to come back into the office, which may lead to even more resignations.
However, there are benefits to returning to the traditional office setting, including increased productivity and being able to collaborate with other employees in person.
Increased emphasis on employee well-being
Whether or not companies return to the office, one final workplace trend that is expected to take precedence in 2022 is an increased emphasis on employee well being. By prioritizing their employees’ happiness, employers will improve their chances of attracting and retaining a talented workforce. This trend may translate into remote work, flexible work hours, and increased benefits, such as paid time off and paid training.