No, we’re not there yet, but we have made progress from 2021 where we survived the big 2020. And in 2022, we’ll continue to refine and redefine this brand new world. What can we expect for the coming year? We compiled the list from LinkedIn and highlighted more on the career perspective.
- The 4-day work week will become a competitive advantage.
Millions of people have been doing more than walking away from their jobs during the Great Resignation this year. They’ve been rethinking the role that work plays in their lives. There’s a growing number of talented, motivated people who are interested in doing a great job in less time, as long as they deliver, time should no longer be a constraint. For decades, leaders have equated commitment with long hours. At long last, more are recognizing that you can excel in your work and care about your workplace without making it the dominant priority in your world. But now, from Microsoft Japan to Semco in Brazil and the government of Iceland to Perpetual Guardian in New Zealand, organizations are figuring out how to make the 4-day work week work.
In 2022, the 4-day work week will become a competitive advantage for companies. Companies that offer 50 extra days of freedom a year will have an easier time attracting and retaining talented people. If you’ve decided that there’s more to life than work, it’s hard to imagine a more enticing and exciting proposition.
2. Salary talk will come out of the shadows
Fierce competition to recruit talented workers combined with a growing push to hold companies accountable for their diversity promises will force employers to finally open up about who is earning what, once and for all.
Pay rates were once an opaque internal mystery at offices and the subject of much speculation, gossip and resentment. But as the push for equity at work gains momentum, pay transparency will begin to go mainstream, according to Diane Domeyer, a managing director at human resources consultancy Robert Half.
For several years, companies like Whole Foods and Netflix have offered all employees access to their colleagues’ salaries. But the current impetus for pay transparency stems from growing momentum around addressing gender and racial pay inequities.
Salary transparency is a logical next step that has even been passed into policy.
Some employers fear this kind of openness on pay could both breed resentment among colleagues and help rivals poach their workers, however, the positives outweigh the negatives and that companies will soon be compelled to act on transparency anyway.
3. Flexibility at work will become even more important
Flexible work is now a fact of life: 93% of knowledge workers globally want the freedom to decide where and when they do their job. And since offices have reopened, people are showing up later and leaving earlier, according to data from MillerKnoll. The shift away from traditional rush hours will spread traffic out more evenly throughout the day and give transit systems some much-needed relief, says Ryan Anderson, vice president of global research at MillerKnoll. But as good as the end of rush hour sounds, we should think bigger, says University of Amsterdam’s Marco te Brömmelstroet. Perhaps we should discard the commute as we know it altogether? “To improve quality of life, we need to become less dependent on mobility and more committed to local proximity.” Making work — even in an office — just a walk or short bike ride away may be in store for more of us.
4. The pandemic’s next act will focus on mental health
In 2022, the world will need to reckon with the trauma the pandemic has left in its wake. Life may be normalizing, but many people are still grappling with grief, depression and anxiety. “The actual work will have to be done because we’re going to see a lot of devastation coming 2022,” said Rhonda Medows, president of population health for the Providence hospital network in Renton, Wash. “I think we’re looking at a lost generation if we don’t,” she added, referring to the challenges children and adolescents faced during this time.
But the demand for mental health services is outstripping supply. With the world facing an extreme shortage of clinicians, many of whom are grappling with their burnout, digital platforms will take centre stage, even beyond the current apps linking patients and therapists.
Researchers are already trying to find biomarkers, including genetic testing, to match people with drugs like antidepressants, which work differently in each individual. The next frontier will also include apps and wearables to help people manage their treatment, said Courtney Billington, president of Janssen Neuroscience. These tools will allow people to enter their symptoms in real-time or track vital signs that may correlate with their mental health, like heart rate. And this data could be shared with or monitored by clinicians.