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Copper 2020 Predictions: How the U.S. economy will impact the workforce

VMblog Predictions 2020 

Industry executives and experts share their predictions for 2020.  Read them in this 12th annual series exclusive.

By Dennis Fois, CEO of Copper

How the U.S. economy will impact the workforce

We're entering a dynamic time in the workplace. Emerging technologies are changing the way we work and how we view longstanding workplace norms. Meanwhile, the new year could pose financial challenges -- a large number of economists forecast that the U.S. will experience a recession in 2020. These offsetting variables have created an interesting dynamic that will impact workers differently from years past.

Here are three predictions I see unfolding in the new year:

1.     Companies will put a greater focus on relationships. We have seen a great period of economic expansion where businesses have focused on new sales, but most economists agree that 2020 will see some economic contraction, as Barclays' Michael Gapen believes the odds of a contraction are around 20 percent over the next 12 months. Economic and global instability will drive a greater focus on relationships, therefore businesses that are focused on long-term relationships will continue to thrive.

2.     Economic uncertainty will impact the gig economy. The gig economy has been on the rise, a major positive for small businesses that are growing and able to tap into expert skills for a specific challenge without the cost of a full-time employee. But financial instability may slow the gig economy's growth, as most people want stability in times of uncertainty. Advance Partners cites that "often the first costs to go (in a recession) are contingent workers."

3.     Remote work will continue to rise. The launch of 5G and continued popularity of productivity tools will accelerate the number of people that will work remotely in 2020. Over the past five years, the number of U.S. workers who work from home has increased 44 percent, according to a FlexJobs and Global Workplace Analytics report. That trend will continue into the new year, as more and more reports show that working remotely boosts productivity. An IWG study found that 85 percent of businesses say productivity has increased because of greater flexibility. Additionally, in the past 10 years, 83 percent of businesses have introduced a flexible workspace policy, or are planning to adopt one.


About the Author

Dennis Fois

Dennis joined Copper as its CEO in May, the latest stop in an international career spanning over 25 years in various countries across Europe and the U.S. During this time, Dennis has developed and led high-performing multicultural teams at both startups and public companies in the technology and financial services sector. Most recently, Dennis was the CEO at NewVoiceMedia, where he led the company to accelerate international growth and ultimately an acquisition by Vonage. Before NewVoiceMedia, Dennis was the CEO at Rant & Rave. He's also held senior leadership positions at eGain, Barclays, Solera and ADP. Since joining Copper as CEO, Dennis has accelerated Copper's growth journey by leading its expansion into Canada. 

Published Tuesday, December 31, 2019 7:50 AM by David Marshall
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