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The labor and technological tendencies that come | be where you are

As the Chilean writer Luis Sepúlveda said, it is important to know the past to understand the present and imagine the future. Predictive reporting and analytics delve into the immediate past to find underlying trends that will shape what is to come. This was the purpose of the study. Fjord Trends 2022, a reflection on the last two years that identifies the main currents in business, technology and design. Gilles Vrommann, business development and strategy designer at Fjord, Accenture Interactive’s design and innovation agency, highlights: “The trends we have identified point to changes in human behavior and have a cross-cutting effect on all businesses”, summarizes this expert who will participate in the webinar Discover the most disruptive emerging trends in business and technologyorganized through Banco Sabadell’s HUB Empresa.

This report reflects the changes taking place in business and technology and projects them into the future. Vrommann points out that, after the outbreak of the pandemic, there was a period of experimentation and discovery that has allowed the foundation of a new paradigm in social, labor and technology relations. These trends have been compiled by a global network of more than 2,000 people in 40 cities around the world and their experience, backed by 14 previous editions, attests to the reliability of the study. The report Fjord Trends 2022 compiles five large categories:

1. Work well-being

The situation resulting from the health crisis and technology have changed the relationship between employees and work, and that is something that companies are beginning to accept. “They are aware of the importance of well-being and are considering what a healthy work culture looks like,” says Vrommann. As the return to presence takes place, this expert highlights, companies are establishing unprecedented customs aimed at safeguarding the mental health of workers.

“A first step is to define formal and informal spaces to listen to employees” says Vrommann. Work well-being does not end in the office. Group dynamics and camaraderie start from the workers, but must be promote from the company. Second, he continues, companies must define what caring for their employees means for their organization and use it as a guiding principle for designing workflow and communications. We are facing a change in mentality that will bring benefits to both the worker and the organization.

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2. Changes in supply chains

The crisis in supply chains began due to the impact of the lockdown, continued with the blockade of the Suez Canal, and worsened with strikes by carriers. The Chinese policy of closing ports and cities in the face of the slightest outbreak of covid-19 has prolonged the complicated situation until today and the conflict in Ukraine has accentuated the feeling of scarcity. These cases, points out Rubén Bastón, director of Marketing4eCommerce, denote a system highly dependent on an excessively long supply chain, too concentrated in a few players and, therefore, very fragile.

The return to normality in this field is going to be complicated. “And if it happens, it won’t be in less than two years,” Bastón predicts. In the long term, the effort will be aimed at shortening this chain, promoting local production. The need to change the consumption habits due to climate change, in addition, it proposes a new way of dealing with production and the crisis of recent years has served as an incentive to prioritize this transformation.

3. The metaverse: a new market

It is still under construction, but the metaverse is on everyone’s lips. The report Fjord Trends 2022 points out how this virtual environment, which Facebook has popularized, is becoming a new space to earn money. At the moment video games and the world of art, with their NFTs or tokens non-fungible (digital works of art with a code that makes them unique), they are the spearheads. Although it is expected that all sectors will bet on this formula. The first metaverse fashion week, Metaverse Fashion Week, has recently been held with brands like Dolce & Gabbana, Tommy Hilfiger and Elie Saab.

Natalia Cisterna, a researcher at the consulting firm Soulsight, proposes thinking of the metaverse as a digital mirror of the physical and vice versa. “Just as there is money on the street, there are cryptocurrencies on the internet.” Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, is entering this universe, but other large companies such as Microsoft or Epic Games are also betting on creating their own digital environment. “The metaverse needs content,” Cisterna points out, “experiences, events, spaces to socialize, services… Although companies have to understand that it is a long-term career.”

4. Information management

Citizens have more information than ever, but they are not better informed. The development of the internet has made it quick and easy to access, but it has also generated a growing distrust. How should brands deal with this scenario?

Consumers are asking more questions than ever, and, Vrommann says, if one brand doesn’t answer, others will. “Today we see the need for three layers of information in any interaction with the brand: the product layer, the experience layer and the ethical layer. As customers become more purpose-driven, this last layer is becoming more and more relevant.”

It is not a question of quantity but of credibility. And to achieve it, you have to bet on a homogeneous and coherent message in the three layers. “By providing real-time, personalized and verifiable information, brands can build trust and drive engagement. fidelity from consumers to brand”, says this expert.

In this sense, from Accenture Interactive they propose an action plan that is based on three points: think, communicate and act. You have to investigate what customers ask and answer them, which enhances transparency. Technological advances like chatbot —assistants who communicate with users through text messages— or massive data analysis are great allies in this task.

5. The new professions

The confinement was a mental pause that changed the priorities of the citizens. Many people took advantage of that period to look for an extra job oriented to their hobbies. Supplementing or replacing the main source of income is now easier thanks to technology platforms and sharing economy applications. This labor transformation has generated jobs such as youtubers and the streamers and new professionals in the field of communication, but it has also caused an evolution of some professionals such as personal trainers, educators or maintenance experts who offer their services on the Internet. In the United States there are people who receive about 11,000 dollars a year, in addition to their regular salary, teaching, writing, renting their home or programming, the report says. Fjord Trends 2022.

It is not about talking so much about digital platforms that offer opportunities, but, Vrommann believes, about individuals who take the narrative of their lives. “Workers are uniting passion and income. The economy of passion is empowering individuals,” she concludes.

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