What will jobs look like in the workplace of the future?

by Rossa Brown

Once familiar jobs are disappearing from the working landscape and new ones taking their place. We take a look at what job roles will be in demand in the future of work.

Developments in technology, communications, and working methods mean many once-familiar jobs have vanished or evolved beyond recognition. Take the secretary, for example, a job that has developed into the multi-faceted role of the personal assistant.

A fifth of people work in occupations that are likely to shrink in demand by 2030

What’s more, new jobs have arrived. You wouldn’t have come across a digital marketer or a social media manager even 25 years ago. The same is true of manufacturing environments – go to a modern factory and you’re likely to see more employees controlling robots and processes than working on assembly lines.

But nothing stands still. According to UK innovation charity Nesta, around a fifth of us work in occupations that are likely to shrink in demand by 2030. The interesting thing is what new jobs might be in the pipeline as the world of work evolves. Here’s a look at some of the roles that might shape the future of work…

Immersive experience designer

Nesta speculates that as virtual, augmented and mixed reality advance and become more mainstream, we’ll need new skills to design these digital experiences. Smart cookies will start looking for ways to be pioneers in this exciting, expanding space.

Alternative energy consultant

Environmental issues surrounding the use of fossil fuels are growing ever-more acute. It’s likely we’ll have to become much more imaginative about how we power the homes and workplaces of the future. Aspiring alternative energy consultants are well-placed to be handsomely paid for their ideas.

Personal healthcare expert

Healthcare roles aren’t new, but as we live longer they’re likely to become even more important in the future of work. Nesta highlights healthcare as a sector that’s likely to grow. So look out for a new breed of occupational therapists, personal fitness consultants, counselors and trained carers who could find themselves in high demand.

New foods nutritionist

Diets are changing as awareness of the environmental impacts of food production grows. Vegan diets are becoming more popular. Genetically modified food – and potential implications – more common. And organizations continue to experiment with adding insect-based or artificial proteins to our menus. Scientists at the cutting-edge of nutrition could stand to benefit.

Social media image consultant

The way people portray themselves on social media is becoming ever-more important. Particularly for Gen Y and Gen Z. Specialists who help people build authentic profiles that help them achieve personal and professional goals could be able to carve out good careers for themselves.

Workplace collaboration expert

Not a new role, but an ever-growing one. The workplace of the future may be even more geographically diverse than it is today. Organizations also face huge choices when buying business tools and IT systems. It’s important they get this choice right. These dedicated experts will specialize in collaboration and help ensure businesses select and implement the right tools. Platforms like Workplace that will play an ever-growing role in connecting entire organizations and facilitating the flow of communication and ideas.

Internet of things technician

We love our smart home technology, and we’re likely to rely on it even more in the future. So if one of our internet-enabled gadgets gets a glitch – or worse still, if it’s hacked – we’ll need someone to fix it fast.

That’s where internet of things technicians come in. A bit like the plumbers and electricians of today, they’ll be the go-to people of the future.

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