Workforce trends in project and business management this year are shaping up to be significantly driven by technological advancements like Artificial Intelligence (AI), employees influencing the selection of technology and shifts in work culture such as remote working. These insights come from Paul Oppong, a thought leader in project and portfolio management, who suggests these shifts could redefine how businesses operate in 2024.
AI has emerged to be a game-changer in project and business management this year, predicting a transformative role in business practices and decision-making processes. Mr Oppong elaborates, "As can be expected, AI is having an historical impact on operational efficiency, predictive analytics, and customer experience. We are starting to see exciting tools and applications driven by AI, such as AI-driven project planning, risk assessment, and resource allocation." Despite the potential benefits, businesses could face challenges in adapting to this shift. "Organisations will face an initial period of adjustment to these changes, which may include delays in project delivery as teams acclimate to new AI tools, shifts in job roles to align with evolving technology demands, and significant modifications to older processes for AI integration," Oppong reveals.
Another notable shift, according to Mr Oppong, is how work cultures have evolved since the Covid pandemic ushered in the remote working era in 2020. He notes that full-time office work is not as prevalent as initially expected and adds, "Remote work has required new models and approaches for team dynamics, communication, and project management. While team members enjoy improved work-life balance due to reduced commute times, distinguishing between work and personal life at home poses its own challenges." Mr Oppong further explains that more effective strategies and tools to manage remote teams have been established this year after several years of trial and error.
The influence of employees on technology selection within organisations is another trend to watch, Mr Oppong suggests. He explains, "This shift means employees feel empowered; now we are seeing more user-friendly and effective technology solutions in the workplace. Empowering employees to choose their tools fosters greater alignment with organisational strategy and smoother adoption of necessary training." Nevertheless, he warns that not all technology choices made by employees may align with the organisation's security and strategic goals and advises that clear communication about organisational requirements and constraints is needed to balance this empowerment and ensure appropriate technology selection.
As industries leap towards a future driven by AI, it’s evident that employees and technology will become increasingly intertwined. Coupled with the trend towards flexible, remote working, these factors will play a crucial role in moulding the business and project management landscape of 2024.