MAKATI CITY, Philippines – Work life has substantially changed and is continuously changing. There are now new ways of working, according to Jabra, the world leading hands-free and innovative audio solutions provider.
“With technology transforming and transcending by the minute, it becomes crucial that we ride on these waves of changes in order to keep up. The sooner we acknowledge that these changes are happening, the faster we can adapt our own responses to them and maximize the opportunity for ourselves, our companies and our shareholders,” said Holger Reisinger, Jabra Vice President of Marketing, Products and Alliances.
He furthered that Jabra is at a unique position to view these changes in the workplace.
“As a global leader in the devices that push this future of work forwards, we work closely with the major technology platform developers. Every day, we talk to the brands that are re-imagining the modern workplace because they buy our headsets and speakerphones. We also brush up against a good number of thought leaders because we make it our business, too, to know what’s going on,” ReIsinger added.
In the course of finding out how to leverage on latest technologies, Reisinger said that they are able to identify three megatrends that define new ways of working:
The Democratization of Technology
With the dawn of smart phones, computers, printers and mobile phones are no longer tools that are only available strictly through a company’s IT department. These days, employers have acknowledged that workers have their own smart phones (sometimes more than one or two); and that they will not think twice in using them for work.
“This ‘consumerization of IT’ or, ‘bring your own device’ (BYOD) – has dramatically changed not just on what devices you will find in your board room, but the nature of work itself,” explained Reisinger. “Five years ago, it may be a rare occurrence to find a co-worker bringing in his own personal laptop to the work place. Today, it’s not just increasingly common—it’s the norm. Workers no longer have to come to their offices to be productive because their smart phones, laptops and tablets are powerful enough to accomplish office work.”
In a recent study conducted in the Philippines by VMWare, it shows how BYOD has been picking up and being embraced by workers in the country.
According to the study, about 81% of the workers own two or more mobile devices; while 85% of them actually bring these devices to their work place.
The study also revealed that BYOD has actually made it more efficient for workers to work out of the office; that they are able to respond faster to change; and have made workers less stressful.
The Decline of Location
According to Mark Leigh, Jabra President for Asia Pacific, around 35% of the workers today are mobile and this percentage is expected to shoot up to 75% by 2017. “Office space has become half-empty because people no longer report to the same place of work every day. UC and the Internet have made all these possible. Because we are more readily connected, we can now use the same productivity tools that we used to only enjoy in our office, while on the go,” Leigh explained.
Reisinger added that with the availability of ubiquitous high-speed connectivity, cloud storage, and your personal suite of productivity devices always at your side, geography now becomes a secondary issue. “The office is now wherever you have your computer, your headset, and an internet connection.”
The War for Talent
With location being somewhat irrelevant now, companies are competing for the best talent on a global basis—and this crème of the crop can pick and choose where and when they want to work. Leigh explained that the war for talent now becomes more intense as companies compete for the more knowledgeable workers on a global basis, regardless of antiquated notions like relocation packages.
“Those with the skill to communicate effectively and clearly with a far-flung team of similarly smart people on complex projects will similarly be sought after. The new reality suggests that the future of work is looking for a self-starter, a self-motivator. This has to do with people who can operate in ‘space’,” said Leigh.
While Jabra is not exactly predicting the end of the workplace, they acknowledged that organizations and managers are now more quick and adept in recognizing the power of individuals, the increasing irrelevance of geography, and the primary importance of social glue and speed.
“This is actually good news,” claimed Reisinger. “We’re optimistic at Jabra, because our position at the forefront of this ‘future of work’ gives us not only a birds-eye-view of this total transformation of the global work place, but an opportunity to help shape it with our partners and customers. And this, in itself, is an exciting future.”
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