The Changing World of Work | Modern Workplace Learning | D2L
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The Changing World of Work

The workplace as we know it has changed dramatically and created shifts in the way organizations and their people act, interact and learn. Innovation is everywhere, with new products and business models being developed at an unprecedented rate. To compete in a world of digital disruption, businesses must move with speed and agility, and even the most mature organizations are now abandoning traditional hierarchies in lieu of flattened decision-making and entrepreneurial thinking.

Technology is radically altering the way and speed at which we work. From artificial intelligence, machine learning, and virtual assistance, to 3D printing and autonomous vehicles, experts predict that the Fourth Industrial Revolution will literally change every interaction and behavior in the workforce. Many of the activities workers perform today have the potential to be automated tomorrow, and to thrive in this disruptive environment, employees are having to develop new hybrid skill sets in order to meet the demands of a quickly changing labor market.

In an age where the individual is prized more highly than the collective organization, specialization is the new norm. In the modern workplace, specific skills and training now trump a university degree, and an employee’s unique value is now principally derived not from the place of employment, but rather that individual’s skills, experience, and networks.

In addition, baby boomers are retiring at pace, leaving behind significant knowledge and leadership gaps. They’re being replaced by tech-savvy millennials—at 83.1 million in the US today they now also make up the dominant workforce demographic—who are stepping up to fill the leadership void. However, they require the right training if they are to succeed as they embark on new careers in management. This generation, characterized by individuals between the ages of 18 and 35, is ambitious, impatient and eager to make an impact, but they also have vastly different learning expectations than GenX or baby boomers. While they value new skills and training to enable career advancements, they also expect greater flexibility in their learning strategies, just as they expect to call the shots when it comes to work type, time and place.

Here’s more about what you need to know about preparing for the future of work.


“Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.”
– John F. Kennedy

  • 60% of all occupations have constituent activities of which at least 30% are technically automatable.
  • On average, by 2020, more than a third of the desired core skill sets of most occupations will be comprised of skills that are not yet considered crucial to the job today.
  • 92% of executives agree there is a skill gap in the US workforce.
  • Only 16% of Americans think that a four-year degree prepares students for a well-paying job in today’s economy.
  • 54% of adults in the labor force say it will be essential for them to continuously train and develop new job skills to keep up with changes in the workplace.
  • 61% of young adults between the ages of 18 and 29 see skills and training as essential.
  • 74% of workers are ready to learn new skills or retrain to remain employable in the future.
  • 85% of workers say a mix of technical and “soft skills” is extremely important to be successful these days.

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