Get awesome marketing content related to Hiring & L&D in your inbox each week

Stay up-to-date with the latest marketing, sales, and service tips and news
Trends, challenges, and opportunities that will define the future of work

AI & Future of work | 6 Min Read

Trends, challenges, and opportunities that will define the future of work

About This Topic


The business landscape is rapidly evolving due to the use of technology, changing workplace patterns, and shifting workforce demands. Savvy businesses understand that the solution to growing needs is leveraging their valuable assets – their people.

However, the workforce’s values and requirements are shifting, making their relationship with work crucial.

A study by Mercer explained that 81% of employees experience burnout risk at the workplace. This means today; your workforce is more stressed than in the past.

Workers expect valuable workplace changes, like remote work, diverse policies, inclusive onboarding, talent mobility, leadership training, reducing skills gap, and many more. These trends help overcome looming challenges and grab growth opportunities.




Top nine work trends and growth opportunities in 2023

The future of work is a constant topic of discussion, and for valid reasons. It is necessary to know where we are moving and what will be the meaning of work for us in the future, especially in a dynamic landscape.

Here are nine key trends that will define the future of work and present many growth opportunities in 2023.


Image banner

1. Four-day workweek and flexible working hours

Companies have started offering flexible hours rather than the conventional 9 to 5 routine to help employees manage their time effectively. It helps employees with responsibilities manage their work and life without challenges.

Additionally, many countries, such as England, Belgium, Sweden, and Iceland, are currently conducting trials of a four-day workweek. This may positively impact employees’ mental and physical health, offering them more time for friends, family, and activities they love and enjoy.

2. Reskilling and upskilling

The future of work will be influenced by rapid digitalization, automation, and artificial intelligence. This means a substantial portion of the existing workforce needs to reskill or upskill.

As per the Future of Jobs Report, 84% of employers expect to offer reskilling and upskilling opportunities to over 70% of their employees by 2025.

It is a retention tactic to reskill instead of replacing legacy workers, encouraging realigning and paving the way for better workforce utilization. This leads to employee satisfaction as they don’t feel stagnated in their careers.

Employers should also consider soft skills training, as technology can’t replace these skills. Encouraging employees in different departments and domains to improve soft skills may help improve workforce communication, collaboration, and productivity.

3. Wellness programs

Organizations are working towards creating a healthier and happier workforce with an emphasis on mental, physical, and emotional well-being.

Millennials form a large section of the workforce today, and these professionals choose workplaces based on add-ons and wellness benefits. Wellness programs help highlight that the organization cares. This is additionally a tool to improve collaboration within the team and create a robust corporate environment.

Efficiently implementing different aspects of wellness programs means reducing absenteeism, healthcare costs, and employee attrition.

4. Data-centric decisions

Data defines user activities, employees’ preferences, and business requirements. It helps businesses understand who their customers are and what type of digital experiences they value.

Businesses are diving deep into data and using available information to make better decisions and create happier work environments. These data-driven decisions enhance employee productivity and provide them with a highly personalized experience. It additionally enables tapping into customer behavior to modify production processes or supply chain management accordingly.

5. Inclusive hiring initiatives

An inclusive team comprises individuals from different races, religions, sexual orientations, gender identities, and abilities. This team encompasses people with varied life experiences who are able to collaborate and work creatively to solve problems. It leads to lower turnover rates and a positive brand image.

Inclusive hiring initiatives also allow companies to relate to clients from different backgrounds, which opens up new market opportunities.

6. Shorter skills gap

As employees plan for diverse and longer corporate careers, building long-term transferable skills is important. Business acumen, leadership qualities, problem-solving skills, psychometric intelligence, and other core competencies can improve the value of employees in a team. Therefore, many companies are assessing the critical skills gap in their workforce and working to bridge it.

For example, Mercer | Mettl’s Skills Gap Analysis helps create a future-ready workforce. It analyses important skills your workforce requires and finds suitable candidates for training. The suite also creates awareness about the training program’s effectiveness, enabling future efficiency.

7. Continuous learning

Change requires adaptation; thus, learning is the key to adjusting to a dynamically changing environment. With multiple small and technological shifts in the business landscape, professionals globally are expected to keep learning.

Therefore, organizations focus on continuous learning and development, which exponentially improves employees’ performance and helps them stay ahead in the market.

8. Talent mobility

The economic slowdown and hiring challenges have made talent mobility a viable option for companies. Allowing employees to upskill and reskill so they can laterally and vertically move to new roles helps retain top talent in the company. It allows for fulfilling crucial positions without going through the entire hiring process.

Hiring managers are further able to strategically assess existing employees’ performance to carefully consider moving them to a leadership role or new positions. This reduces the cost and time spent on wrong hires and enhances employee engagement and motivation, leading to better performance.

9. Quiet hiring

Along similar lines of quiet quitting, recruiters have started quiet hiring. While in quiet quitting, employees do the bare minimum; quiet hiring means acquiring necessary skills without adding to the headcount.

It includes the following factors:

  • Focusing on internal mobility, as discussed above, to ensure the movement of employees in relevant job roles.
  • Upskilling the existing workforce to meet organizational requirements and achieve goals.
  • Using innovative approaches, such as gig workers, freelancers, and part-time workers, to meet short-term requirements.



The future of work is rapidly unfolding in ways that were once unimaginable. It’s hard to predict which way the trends will pivot, but it is vital to keep a close watch. Businesses of tomorrow need to ensure continuous learning, improvement, technology usage, and the establishment of a hybrid workplace. In addition, they need to utilize data to make driven and valuable decisions, enabling better workforce performance and high productivity.

Mercer | Mettl’s assessments help organizations at various stages. For example, Skills Gap Analysis allows the evaluation of important skills that employees need to develop. The Leadership Development Assessment identifies employees who have the potential to become leaders of different teams. Utilize the suite of assessments by Mercer | Mettl to improve workforce performance, hire top talent, and bridge the skills gap.



What are the five trends shaping the future of work?

What factors will affect work in the future?

Originally published March 31 2023, Updated July 3 2023

Written by

Vaishali has been working as a content creator at Mercer | Mettl since 2022. Her deep understanding and hands-on experience in curating content for education and B2B companies help her find innovative solutions for key business content requirements. She uses her expertise, creative writing style, and industry knowledge to improve brand communications.

About This Topic

Talent acquisition is all about strategizing for sourcing, hiring, and retaining the talent an organization needs. This blog offers more insights on the topic.

Related posts

Would you like to comment?


Please write a comment before submitting


Thanks for submitting the comment. We’ll post the comment once its verified.

Get awesome marketing content related to Hiring & L&D in your inbox each week

Stay up-to-date with the latest marketing, sales, and service tips and news