Ever feel like the world of technology is whizzing past and you just can’t keep up? That’s fair. It seems we barely have our hands on a brand-new smartphone before the manufacturer announces an updated model. In this age of planned obsolescence, where devices are purportedly designed to become worthless in a short space of time, it’s hard to keep up. Since the burst of the dot-com bubble in 2000, technology has advanced at an astonishingly rapid pace. The World Economic Forum notes that in the past two decades, the percentage of the global population online has skyrocketed from 7% to more than half. Broadband access is no longer considered a luxury but a basic human right. The math teachers who told you you wouldn’t always have a calculator in your pocket were wrong. Before the internet became a mainstay in many of our lives, two years might not have yielded a huge amount of technological innovation. Nowadays, two years is a lifetime. That’s all down to the exponential growth of technology. What does exponential growth mean? Exponential growth is a mathematical term that refers to the process of greater increases in quantity as time passes. For example, if your savings account was growing exponentially, you might have $500 this year, which would increase to $1,000 the following year, $2,000 the year after that, and so on. As Thomson Reuters reminds us, exponential growth is not the same as linear growth. Figures are multiplied rather than simply added, meaning things advance a lot more quickly. So, what does exponential growth mean for tech consumers? It means we can barely comprehend the speed at which new, shiny toys are presented to us. Things move at hyperspeed — a decade in the tech world can be a lifetime when it comes to innovation. Today’s millennials might laugh at the clunky cellphones of the 1980s, but these were state-of-the-art devices for their time. Similarly, Gen Z might ridicule the Blackberrys and Motorola Razrs that dominated the early noughties, despite their former position as the ultimate status symbol. Who knows what future generations will think of our current innovations? This echoes the sentiments of famed astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson, who said: “I have stopped commenting on the advances of things, because I know in a short number of years that follow, it would be laughable given what we would have then achieved. When you live on an exponential growth of anything, it looks like all the greatest advances just happened, just for you, just in that moment. That is the nature of exponential growth.” To truly get to grips with the exponential growth of technology, we must familiarize ourselves with Moore’s Law. [caption id="attachment_468895" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Photo by Brian Kostiuk on Unsplash[/caption] What is Moore’s Law? Moore’s Law is a theory developed by Gordon Moore, co-founder of chip manufacturing giant Intel. In 1965, he predicted that the number of transistors on a microchip would double every year (later revised to two years), but the cost of computers would be cut in half. Put simply, this means the speed of our computers will continue to increase as their price continues to drop. This pace has begun to slow somewhat in recent years, leading some to ponder: ‘Is Moore’s Law dead?’ According to Mike Gianfagna of Synopsys, this is not the case. He posits that “the explosion of hyperconnectivity, big data, and artificial intelligence applications has increased the pace of innovation and the need for ‘Moore’s law-style’ improvements in delivered technology.” Though the theory itself may soon reach its limitations in terms of chip size, ASML’s Martin van de Brink adds that Moore’s prediction was “more focused on the march of innovation than just shrinkage.” And that march shows no signs of slowing down. How to keep up with the exponential growth of technology OK, so you’ve completed your crash course in the exponential growth of technology. But what next? Panic as you realize you could never possibly stay up to date with the latest tech trends? Not quite. Though the constantly changing nature of this industry can be daunting for the less technologically adept, it’s a likely unavoidable aspect of your career. As employment website Indeed points out, “technology is an important part of almost every job today.” This means it’s essential to keep an open mind when it comes to learning new things. Here are some tips on how to keep up with tech news at work: Do some research Take the time to research key influencers in the tech industry. Find people whose tone of voice resonates with you and who you find interesting. Follow them on social media to sprinkle a few extra tech tidbits into your daily life. Set up an RSS feed This is the simplest way to get the latest tech trends and insights from company blogs, industry experts, and more in one place. Set aside a time block on your calendar to catch up with these articles once a week, if not daily. Create a training goal Many organizations are willing to subsidize training courses to help their employees upskill. Set yourself a goal to gain a new certificate or accreditation in your chosen area of tech within the next six months. Invite your colleagues to join you for extra motivation. Attend tech events This is a fun way to stay up to date with new advances in the technological industry — why read about it when you can see it in action? Look online to see if there are any tech conferences or trade shows taking place in your locality. Ask for help If you need a hand getting to grips with a new software platform, ask a supervisor or member of the IT team. No need to be embarrassed — if you’re having trouble with it, chances are some of your colleagues are, too. Finally, don’t get disheartened. Yes, the exponential growth of technology can be mind-boggling at times, but if you focus on your own industry and stay abreast of the advancements relevant to your role, you’ll be up to speed in no time.
Are your HR teams on top of their workload? Or are they struggling just to get by? The COVID-19 pandemic put an undeniable strain on HR departments across the globe as they struggled to think on their feet and facilitate the dramatic push into remote working. As noted by Forbes, the challenges of 2020 have “reshaped the way HR functions.” Now that the initial panic is ebbing away, it’s time for HR leaders to assess what they have learned from the past year and prepare a new roadmap for the era of flexible work. According to Tinypulse.com, HR professionals should “be committed to creating a better employee experience.” Be honest — if you were an employee at your organization, what would you change? In this buyer’s guide to employee management software, we outline three steps to help you optimize your HR processes. 1. Assess your use cases First, take a look at your current employee management system. Are there some areas where your HR teams are lacking? For example, your recruitment materials might be split across separate platforms, which can make it difficult to locate all relevant documents for an individual candidate. In Wrike’s eBook on employee management, we outline 11 of the most common use cases in HR. Here are some examples: A centralized request platform: You need to streamline all employee requests in one place to ensure they are tracked and followed up on. These requests can include PTO, payroll, and office equipment. An established onboarding procedure: To borrow a line from HRdive.com, “first impressions can be lasting impressions for new hires.” HR teams should have an effective onboarding process that ensures all new employees start off on the right foot. An employee performance tracker: Monitoring employee performance is a key element of HR. Leaders should have a system for tracking outputs, reviewing progress, and providing feedback. 2. Choose your required features Once you have determined the specific use cases for your organization, it’s time to choose the appropriate features to help you tackle them. According to Teambay.com, “tools are the backbone of business processes.” This means HR departments should take some time to select suitable employee management software that offers all the required features for their unique needs. Wrike’s employee management guide outlines 12 of the most beneficial features for an HR team. These include: Custom request forms: A dynamic form with customizable fields is the best way for HR teams to get all the information they need for a particular request. Templates: A large part of employee management is repeatable processes. Templates and blueprints can help leaders to save time by eliminating unnecessary admin tasks. Kanban boards: These boards offer a holistic view of multiple tasks and projects at a single glance, making them highly useful for tracking employee performance. 3. Create an employee management checklist Still feel like you’re forgetting something? A simple checklist could be the answer. As Hartford Business Journal notes, there are many benefits to using a checklist, including better organization and increased productivity. After you’ve done the research on your HR use cases and features, it’s useful to have a comprehensive list that encompasses all the desired benefits of using versatile employee management software. That way, you can compare it to your own department to ensure you have everything you need to uplevel your HR processes. Wrike’s employee management guide includes a definitive checklist to make sure you have all your bases covered. Here’s a sneak peek at some items: A centralized workspace: Streamlining your HR tools will save your teams time and reduce distractions caused by switching platforms. Better resource management: Team leads should have full visibility into employee workloads so they can evenly distribute tasks and eliminate burnout. Easy-to-use tracking software: By creating timesheets and automating weekly reports, HR teams will have a better grasp on budget management. Download the buyer's guide to optimizing employee management Now you know the three steps to optimizing your HR processes, you can begin your journey to a better employee management system. For access to the complete lists of use cases, features, and benefits mentioned above, take a look at “The Definitive Buyer’s Guide to Employee Management for HR Teams” — download it here.
As the COVID-19 pandemic eases with the acceleration of vaccine rollouts, companies across the globe are preparing to welcome employees back to the office. Organizational departments such as HR, IT, and people operations will be following individual checklists to ensure all bases are covered when the physical workplace reopens. This includes introducing cleaning procedures, creating temporary schedules, and informing employees of return-to-work protocols. But what about the employees themselves? What can you expect when you return to the office and how can you prepare yourself for this new situation? Luckily, we’ve prepared a return-to-work checklist for you to follow.