By Mel Sim

Know the ins and outs of what’s trending in the office for 2022 to prep for your success.

It’s only been a few weeks into 2022 but it seems like work is getting off to a roaring start (Year of the Tiger coming soon and all). And it’s no surprise with how much COVID-19 had disrupted the workplace for the past two years… and is continuing to do so! One thing is definitely in the cards for 2022 – agility. If there is one thing the pandemic has taught us, it is to be agile because who knows what will happen. To prepare yourself for this uncertainty, it pays to be agile and flexible in your working style as well as way of thinking to quickly come up with solutions and ideas.

What other work trends can there be for 2022? We scoured the internet for some predictions. See what you think of them!

#1 Your mental health will remain a priority
Hands up if working at home has gotten you all burnout and tired! Luckily, companies have realised the impacts of working from home and the pandemic on its people, and many are increasingly focusing on the mental health of their employees. In fact, this whole focus on mental health has become an important HR goal to help attract and retain talent. You may even realise that your company has added some mental health programmes to help you survive the changes the pandemic has brought forth; some are even giving you more flexibility in how you want to work so you can be productive in your own way.

#2 The rising of the hybrid workplace
As if you’re not already familiar with this term – hybrid workplace. But more Malaysian companies are adopting this rather unique way of working, some in fact doing it since last year and it seems that it’s here to stay. For those not in the know, the hybrid workplace offers employees a combination of remote and in-office work so there will be some flexibility for employees to choose where and how they want to work. This is also in line with keeping employees safe (the pandemic isn’t over yet, guys) as well as a sign of companies realizing the importance of work-life balance, especially for employees with little kids or other family commitment. It’s definitely something employees welcome – A poll by Ranstad (a leading human resources solutions agency) in its H1 2021 Workmonitor survey showed that 69% of respondents in Malaysia itself have indicated their preference to continue working from home in light of the pandemic and this is the highest in the region. Another interesting fact? More than 7 in 10 respondents said they would feel unsafe in their workplace until others around them are fully vaccinated (get your vaccine, guys!).

#3 You may be part of The Great Resignation
Did you feel like a lot of your friends quit their jobs in 2021? It’s not an assumption because it really did happen. Called The Great Resignation by Anthony Klotz, organizational psychologist and professor at Texas X&M University, it referred to the wave of people quitting their jobs due to the pandemic as they begin to rethink how, where and why they work. You can read his interview here.

The trend was huge in the US where stats revealed 4.4 million Americans left their jobs in 2021 but what about Malaysia? Well considering that in 2021, a study by the Employment Hero in 2021 called the Employee Movement and Retention Report indicated that 81% of Gen Z and 68% of Millennials plan to change jobs within the year, we might be seeing our very own version of The Great Resignation continuing in 2022.

#4 The gig economy continues
And why not? Flexible work hours, get paid according to how hard you work, plenty of work opportunities – we don’t see this type of work style getting any downtime soon, considering that 4 million Malaysians are already working full-time as gig workers as of 2020. In fact, many might even consider the gig economy as a meanwhile career during their hunt of a proper one. Plus, there are so many ways to get hired as a gig worker now so there’s no worry about not getting any work.

#5 You’ll be upskilling plenty!
The best part? Your company will give you the opportunity to do so. Corporate Malaysia has come to realise that old skills don’t apply anymore and to really be successful in today’s work climate, upskilling is an absolute necessity, especially for new skills that involve technology. There are also a lot of third-party platforms for you to improve yourself, whether it is within the industry or for you to pick up an entirely new skill so you can move on to something else. The biggest takeaway from this prediction? Make the most of what’s available to you to improve yourself!

#6 You can work anywhere in the world
Thanks to remote working! With the right skills and attitude, who knows what opportunities may land on your lap, even if the company is located in a different country altogether! The competition will be stiff as the hiring field becomes much wider but if you meet all the checkpoints, that dream job in the US or UK may be a reality in your lovely little home office in Malaysia with occasional travel when borders are fully opened!

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