The Future Workplace Forecast Study

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Companies Launch Internal Career Mobility Programs That Allow Employees To Test Drive New Skills

New Study Links Career Mobility to Improvements in Employee Engagement, Productivity and Teamwork

NEW YORK, NY, November 14, 2016—Future Workplace, an HR executive network and research firm, today announces the results of a new study sponsored by Cisco titled, Future Workplace Forecast: Navigating the Future of Work. The key findings of this research are found in this executive summary, as well as in the newly published book, The Future Workplace Experience: 10 Rules For Mastering Disruption in Recruiting and Engaging Employees, co-authored by Jeanne C. Meister and Kevin J. Mulcahy. The key findings highlight results from a global sample of 2,147 human resource leaders and hiring managers in the United States, UK, Mexico, Japan, Australia, India, France, Canada, Switzerland and Brazil.

Employers are offering internal career mobility opportunities to allow employees to test drive new roles to prepare them for the future workplace. The quantitative research shows how companies are creating new ways for employees to develop their skills and try out new roles while staying at their current employer. According to HR and hiring managers, offering career mobility will increase employee engagement (49 percent), improve employee productivity (39 percent) and improve employee teamwork (39 percent). Career mobility programs allow companies to increase their engagement levels while stemming job hopping. Companies that embrace career mobility will be viewed as a better place to work.

Companies are following a mobile first strategy inside the workplace. Chief Marketing Officers were the first to focused on building an exceptional customer experience. Now heads of HR are leveraging marketing tools such as design thinking and sentiment analysis to create a compelling employee experience. Within the next three years, research is showing the job candidate experience will be a largely mobile experience for 45% of organizations surveyed.

New technical and managerial jobs are being created as smart technologies enter the workplace. Organizations of the future will increasingly use technology to create extraordinary workplace experiences and do things previously impossible. Future Workplace identified 20 jobs that did not exist 10 years ago and are growing today because technology is augmenting and enhancing jobs. Three of these jobs include: Recruiting Scrum Master, Employee Experience Director, and People Analytics Director.

“Business and HR leaders must take a leadership role in understanding the future of work and how to create a culture which is personalized, embraces career mobility and provides easy access to on-demand learning, says Jeanne C Meister, Founder Future Workplace and co-author of The Future Workplace Experience: 10 Rules For Mastering Disruption in Recruiting and Engaging Employees. “Employers recognize they must grow and broaden employee’s skills, not just through formal learning but by being exposed to a myriad of new jobs and roles inside the company,” says Meister.

“The future of work will bring technology and the human touch together to drive differentiated experiences and intelligence that drives business impact. In these experiences, people are looking for customization and agility in how and where they work. We no longer work in a one size fits all world. We are now creating one size fits one experiences that accelerate teams, individual performance and continuous learning,” says Francine Katsoudas, SVP and Chief People Officer, Cisco.

In The Future Workplace Experience: 10 Rules for Mastering Disruption in Recruiting and Engaging Employees (McGraw-Hill Education; November 14, 2016), co-authors Jeanne C. Meister and Kevin J. Mulcahy offer concrete advice for how companies master disruption in the workplace.


JEANNE C. MEISTER is a founding partner of Future Workplace, an HR executive network and research firm. She is the co-author of the bestselling book “The 2020 Workplace” and is a regular contributor to Forbes. Jeanne is the recipient of the Distinguished Contribution in Workplace Learning Award, given by the Association for Talent Development (ATD) to one executive each year, honoring their body of work.

KEVIN J. MULCAHY is a partner at Future Workplace and, along with Jeanne, is the co-host of The Future Workplace Network, a membership community for HR executives. Organizations across multiple industries and geographies regularly engage him to facilitate corporate workshops on ‘future-proofing’ their business and HR strategies.