Top Trends in the World of Work for 2024

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Employees are optimistic about the opportunities opened up by new technologies – if the right conditions are created, says Robert Rosellen, Area Vice President Germany & Austria at ServiceNow. He presents key areas of action and top trends in the world of work for 2024.

The world of work has changed rapidly in recent years – so much so that we run the risk of employees no longer being able to keep up. A study conducted by ServiceNow and Opinium paints a worrying picture: 42% of employees say that their training has not prepared them for work and almost half (47%) do not understand modern technologies properly. Around one in five employees (17%) even wish they had taken a different career path in view of this situation.

What conclusions should companies draw from this? Here are four top trends for 2024:

1. AI will continue to play a key role in 2024

Photo Artificial intelligence

More than half (57%) of respondents in Germany are convinced that AI will have a positive impact on productivity in the workplace. The statement that AI is the greatest opportunity for the future of work was agreed by 45%. For companies, this means that AI will have a huge impact on the way we work today and in the years to come. If you want to remain competitive, productive and agile, you should focus on the positive attitude of employees towards AI: not using the technology is no longer an option.

German employees are already using AI or plan to use it to

  • Support brainstorming and creative idea generation (71%)
  • Create Excel formulas (68%)
  • Write emails or posts for social media (67%)

2. Continuing education: Digital skills, now!

Digital skills will be a decisive factor in the world of work in the future. At least this is the view of the overwhelming majority of the German population (73%). For this reason, almost two thirds of respondents (60%) believe that dealing with AI should also become a compulsory subject in schools. Employees therefore show a clear interest in improving their own digital skills. This indicates that such continuing education courses would be well received in Germany. The onus is now on companies to provide the relevant upskilling programs for employees. However, it is not only continuing education that is essential – reskilling for career changers is also becoming increasingly important.

Thanks to automated processes, employees will be able to work more intelligently and productively, new occupational fields and jobs will emerge – and new skills will be developed at the same time. We need this in order to survive in a volatile world. Because by 2027, around five million jobs in Germany alone will be directly influenced by automation and digital technologies.

3. Managers (finally) become game changers

Top trends in the world of work

The implementation of further training measures is closely linked to the decisions made by managers: Almost two-thirds (67 percent) of German employees believe that their employers have a responsibility to encourage the development of AI skills in the workplace. It is therefore up to managers to act now. The aim is to develop a practical learning and development strategy that provides employees with the necessary skills to work with AI systems.

In addition, managers need to ensure that their employees are given the time and space to make the most of what they have learned. At present, more than half (54 percent) of those surveyed still find it difficult to incorporate the further development of their digital skills into their everyday working life. These barriers need to be broken down. Managers who do not embrace new ways of working therefore run the risk of their workforce not being properly prepared for the working world of the future.

4. But: Managers must be protected!

Beware: we must be careful not to overstep the mark. After all, expectations on managers are extremely high. They should always be approachable, balanced and available, know the company’s values, be professionally outstanding and technologically up to date – between role model, coach, team player and expert. However, this is difficult to achieve and often leads to excessive demands. Companies should take this into account and relieve managers by allocating responsibility for specific topics and specialist areas to several shoulders so that each manager only has an oversight of certain areas.

Top trends for 2024 – conclusion

The study paints a clear picture: employees are optimistic about the opportunities opened up by AI and other new technologies – if the training of employees and the introduction of AI are professionally promoted. Managers play an important role here. One thing is clear: companies that integrate digital skills into a solid learning and development strategy have the chance to be successful – and to enable their employees to share in this success.

Robert Rosellen is Area Vice President Germany & Austria at ServiceNow. He is responsible for business growth in Germany and Austria. As an experienced manager, his core task is to maintain customer and partner relationships in various industries. Photo: Alex Schelbert

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