The workplace can be many things. It can be a conference room, a construction site or a seat in front of a computer. It can also be a conference in a free online chat service. As employers and employees alike become more tech-savvy, so does the workplace. Many predict that the future workplace may not even be a place anymore.
If workplaces are poised to change over the next few years, work etiquette, system and safety are sure to follow suit. But, many workplaces will still be places. No matter the change of setting, there are skills that every worker needs to develop to ensure safety in the workplace. Training programs and courses, such as those taught by Vertical Horizonz, will still be relevant to any working environment.
Of course,not everything will remain the same.
Injuries and sicknesses are still the top safety concerns in the workplace.
According to recent statistics, for every 1,000 employees in Australia, 13.1 file a serious health or injury claim. The fishery, forestry and agricultural industries have the most number of serious claims over the past 14 years. This is not going to change over the next few years. But, sicknesses due to mental stress and exposure to radiation are expected to increase in five years or less.
Change of Context
At present, almost 10% of serious complaints are attributed to mental stress. In the age of information overload, everyone is susceptible to mental stress. As more workplaces rely on social media and other similar platforms to disseminate information, delegate tasks and increase transparency in the workplace, pressure also increases, as everyone knows what everyone else is doing. As everyone has a smartphone, many will be pressured to be on-call. As such, internet usage and effective offline intervals during and after work may be a new focus for workplace safety.
Trainings may also begin to focus on briefing employees about Internet usage policies. Clearer distinctions between work and personal use will be made in the coming years, and grounds for penalties and dismissals may also be set in the online context.
It is obvious that the future workplace will increasingly go online, but it will not entirely be online. For some companies, the future means more work and less place. As a whole, the future workplace is still work and place, with perhaps, more cyberspace.