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2020 Outlook on the Digital Workforce

Transitioning back into a new year at work — and this year, a new decade — enables organizations to both critically reflect on the past and strategically look to the future. Today, digital transformation is a driving force behind the use of technology and the ways in which IT departments are preparing to meet the expectations of employees fueling the workforce. 

In 2020, the digital workforce will continue to grow, impacting the way that organizations do their most productive, successful work. And as the people, technology, and infrastructure that make up the workforce as we know it advances, organizations will see a more diverse, yet cohesive work environment. 

We’ve taken a look at three key areas of the future of work and what the year ahead holds for the digital workforce. 

A new generation of digital natives 

Last year, we welcomed some of the first Gen Z workers — or the App Generation — into the workforce, a new population of workers who have grown up with and rely on the use of technology more than any other generation before them. Gen Zers are digital natives and expect exactly what they’ve been used to in their personal lives — instant connection, seamless communication and intuitive user experience — to be reflected in their new professional lives, too. 

In the new decade, we’ll see more and more Gen Zers working alongside four other generations, from Baby Boomers to Millenials, that will require businesses to adopt an agile communications and collaboration plan, encouraging them to think outside of the traditional email and chat services and accommodate a variety of working preferences. To provide an experience that meets the expectations of digital natives and veteran workers, communication solutions that combine chat, voice, video and more in a single application will become less of a nice-to-have and more of a necessity. 

The rise of distributed work  

According to a Global Workplace Analytics report, the remote workforce has grown at an incredible rate in the past 10 years with a 22 percent increase between 2017 and 2018 alone, throwing organizations full-speed-ahead into the future of work. Our research found a large majority of workers (79 percent) want to work remotely in some capacity during their work week. And with the growing presence of Gen Z in the workforce, this number is expected to continue climbing. 

The demand for flexibility has urged many organizations to find new ways to remain competitive and offer a unique working experience to prospective employees. As a global company, Fuze relies on a distributed workforce to share the unique perspectives that ultimately drive our mission to empower the modern workforce to do their best work without limitations. This type of flexible work allows for an expanded talent pool, breaking down barriers to hire employees no matter where they are located. In 2020, this trend will not only increase to open new opportunities for business growth, but will slowly evolve into exploring 100 percent remote and distributed workforces or even headquarter-less companies. 

More connection, less boundaries 

Communications and collaboration technology enables workers to be productive wherever and whenever. This year, connecting a multi-generational, distributed workforce may sound like a challenge, but with the right tools, connection can become stronger as we move into the future. 

With cloud communications, careful enhancements to usability and software design can be adjusted to create tools that will free up time spent on the friction of communicating so that employees can do their best work. The arrival of 5G networks, a significant improvement to infrastructure, will also cultivate a stronger connective environment to ensure workers always maintain full productivity through a reliable, ultra-connected network. 

Digital workforce momentum will accelerate into the new decade, bringing along with it the trends of flexible communication, distributed work and agile connection. Adopting these practices and leaning into the endless possibilities of the evolving workforce will accelerate bottom-line business strategy, keeping employees happy and companies competitive in 2020. 

To learn more about the future of work and how to prepare for the changes that lie ahead, read our report below. 

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Alex Campanelli

Alex Campanelli

Alex Campanelli is the content strategist for Fuze.

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