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ANAND BHASKAR, VP, PEOPLE SUCCESS, SAPIENT INDIA
The Past, Present & Future of workplace
The concept of regular employment, a formal office and career growth will disappear
Issue Date - 01/07/2012
 
During the Industrial Revolution, employers were known to make their men work in inhuman conditions, maximise their factory output, pay bare minimum wages, and any kind of benefits were unimaginable.

In industrial India, the personnel and administration function came into existence between 1960s and mid-1990s. That was when the concept of allowances such as lunch, washing, uniform, shoes, night-shift and late-working allowance came into being. A workplace offering such allowances was considered futuristic and motivating. While employers considered these benefits as expenses, unions had to negotiate hard to extract them from their employers.

With the coming of the late 1990s and the millennium, the concept of workplace changed and new trends emerged. Each company tried to outdo its peers with a desire to be different. Companies such as Infosys, Google and Microsoft not only led the way in technology but also in workplace practices. Today, foodcourts offering variety of cuisines, sports facilities, gym, dance classes, rooms with video games, massage chairs in offices, door-to-door pickup and drop facilities are a common site. In addition, there is an enormous focus on learning and development, career paths, compensation and benefits and work-life balance.

The next 10-15 years will see the Millennials (Gen Z) as the workforce in the industry. The concept of regular employment, a formal office and career growth will disappear and will be replaced by new trends such as work from anywhere and project-oriented compensation. Current compensation and benefits philosophies like median/quartiles/percentiles will soon be redundant, permanent jobs, career paths and retirement age may no longer be relevant.

People practices such as appraisals, compensation and benefits will soon lose prominence, as ‘office of the future’ will be more about people and their capability where work will be just a part of it.

 
Sayani Sinha Roy           

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