Engineering the economy and the world of work in 2018

Large corporations will have more influence than governments, implanted bio-chips will be used to drive employee efficiency in the engineering sector and businesses will change shape, with job titles consigned to history.

These are just 3 of 17 scenarios facing organisations across the engineering sector, according to a study published today.

Produced by the Chartered Management Institute, the study analyses current trends and the views of business leaders to predict what the world of work will look like in 2018. Launched by Sir John Sunderland, chairman of Cadbury Schweppes plc at Tate Britain, it is combined with a survey of more than 1,000 senior executives.

Some of the key findings include:

  • Power blocs: 57 per cent in the engineering sector believe that companies will exert more influence than governments. The study also suggests that trade blocs will experience greater levels of competition and conflict in 2018, with the rise of competing internet economies across the globe.
  • A world in turmoil: questions remain over organisations̵7; readiness for a world under attack from cyber terrorism. Economic downturns and political unrest will mean business needs to adapt to a world where America has withdrawn from the global marketplace.
  • Virtual reality: one in three in the engineering sector say holograms will be a regular feature of business meetings and 38 per cent in the region believe ̵6;intelligent robots̵7; will be responsible for decision-making at work.
  • Projected skills need: organisations across the sector will still need many of the skills required today, but the ability to drive change will be prized. The research shows that 71 per cent believe project management skills will be necessary for all, with 67 per cent agreeing that ̵6;innovation and creativity will be key to most tasks̵7;.
  • Home is where the heart (of business) is: the study predicts that the ̵6;work needs̵7; of employees will change as they operate across wider geographical areas. 57 per cent of executives in the sector expect working from home will be commonplace to reduce the carbon footprint. 79 per cent suggest work-life balance will be the key to job choice.

Mary Chapman, chief executive, at the Chartered Management Institute, says: ̶0;Looking ahead ten years, it is clear that the successful organisations will be those who can do more than embrace change ̵1; they will anticipate, identify and drive it. Of course we cannot determine the future, but that does not mean we shouldn̵7;t forecast and prepare for it to ensure that organisations and teams are effective, capable and competitive.̶1;

The report goes on to identify ̵6;humanness̵7; as a key factor for future organisational success. It suggests that positions and job titles might be removed if they hinder collaboration.

Looking at the ̵6;private needs of people̵7; the study also shows that changing demographics will compel organisations to offer more tailored lifestyle benefits to employees.

Chapman adds: ̶0;A greater degree of emotional intelligence will be required by managers and leaders so they can understand how people work and their likely reaction to change. They will also need to shift from today̵7;s input-driven approach to a focus on output, achievement and a better integration between work and personal lives.̶1;

Image: The Chartered Management Institute report predicts great changes in the world of work

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