It is constantly up for debate whether technology has had a positive or negative impact on our lives. Heavy technology use — particularly on social media — is said to be bad for our mental health. Whilst it seems like there is a new shock story every week claiming that artificial intelligence (AI) will end all employment. But technology has, throughout history, made our lives better.
Whether you believe that the latest advancements coming out of silicon valley or the silicon roundabout will have a positive impact on our working lives or not, they are already with us. Because of this, it’s important to understand what the latest workplace technology is, and how you can best use it at work.
Whether you have a career in HR, admin or marketing, there are applications and services which can improve the way we work. The best tech can improve productivity, enable us to work remotely more effectively, and enhance business processes.
Every aspect of our time spent at work — whether that be at home, a coffee shop, or at the office — is going to change over the next few years.
What technology will change the way you work?
Some of the technology that will enable these positive steps is already with us. You may even use them at work. Collaborative software such as Slack, Workplace, Trello and Google Drive, for example, are common in almost every workplace. Especially in startups and high growth companies. But even large-scale corporations are using tech to improve working practices.
Working on collaborative projects across different locations is not something that’s groundbreaking. We have done it for years. But what the latest technology does is make it more efficient, more reliable, and more user friendly. Whereas ten years ago a Skype call was a constant nightmare, today we have reliable ways online to contact each other.
Workplace, for example, enables us to message, call and video call our colleagues from across the globe, without lag or unreliability. It also acts as a workplace social network. Slack allows us to do the same. There are people who say that true collaboration only works with face-to-face contact. But with advancements in tech such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), this is now possible. It might not be in your office right now, but it will be there in the not so distant future.
Trello and Jira are also making a big difference to working practices. With live updates on projects, there is less need for physical meetings to discuss progress. Google Drive is even more vital to work in the digital age. It allows us to collaborate in real time on documents, spreadsheets and presentations, and is the best way to improve the quality of projects in the short and long term.
Technology has already transformed our workplaces. But in the future, the transformation is going to be huge. With VR, AR and technologies like blockchain taking over the world, your profession is going to change substantially over the next decade.
There’s no need to panic about losing your career, however, as new technologies will be there to supplement, not destroy your work. The technological disruption happening today is arguably not as groundbreaking as the internet or the light bulb. And it may even allow you to focus on the more creative, personal side of your job.
How will it impact Admin, HR and PA roles?
As we are specialists in finding people like you Admin, HR and PA roles, it’s important for us to let you know exactly how technology is going to impact your long-term career.
There are many predictions about what is going to happen over the next 5-10 years. One thing that is almost certain to happen is the use of machine learning and AI at work. But what exactly is it? And how will it impact your line of work?
Machine learning is essentially a form of artificial intelligence that analyses data and learns itself how to perform tasks, without having to be programmed by a human. This all sounds very sci-fi, but it can have some real-world benefits to your role.
AI can, for example, transform daily tasks. The technology is already with us to create a highly personalised office environment. AI enables us to automatically control the space around us.
It can change the temperature if it knows that a certain individual is going to be in a conference room. It can dim the lights according to people’s preferences. It can optimise calendars, meetings and projects for every individual in a company. As a HR professional, AI can help you enhance employee happiness, allowing you to focus on much bigger projects that have a lasting impact. Projects that will enhance employee retention and engagement.
Machine learning can also improve your productivity at work. The pain of every working person is procrastination. Not only does it reduce efficiency, it can leave you with a huge pile of work to complete on a Friday afternoon. Which is something no-one enjoys.
AI monitors could, in the future, have the capability to inform us when we’re drifting away from what we should be focusing on. It may sound dystopian to some, but as we know, there’s no better feeling than leaving work feeling productive and content. This won’t just be for the benefit of your employer, it will benefit your long-term career aspirations too.
But what about the human element? Surely it is personal connections that really benefit companies? With technology improving the efficiency of tasks that take up time and don’t offer a great deal of benefit, you can focus on the stuff that matters. As a receptionist, for example, with AI taking care of booking meeting rooms, and adjusting them to make the people who use them happy, you can focus on creating a great first impression, and making sure the office reflects the culture of the business.
The same applies to those of you who work as personal assistants. Whether you’re assisting a person in the C-suite or a low-level manager, technology will allow you to automatically make their daily lives exactly suited to their needs. Book a meeting room, and AI could automatically change a digital picture frame to their favourite family picture. It could draw the blinds for a high-level meeting. Essentially, it’s going to improve their experience, and make you better at your job.
Is there a risk of job losses?
With any new technology, there is always a risk that jobs could be lost. But with new technology comes new opportunities. The world of work has changed drastically over the past 10 years. It is likely it will accelerate even faster over the next 10. But technology creates new openings, and changes the jobs we know today. Yes, you will likely have to learn new skills along the way. But the jobs of the future will be more creative, more personal, and ultimately more enjoyable.
If you are looking for a new role this summer, view our latest jobs now, check out our locations or get in touch with one of our recruiters today!