Future proofing careers: How to stay relevant for tomorrow’s workforce

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

44% of Australian jobs (5.1 million current jobs) are at risk from digital disruption in the next 20 years, and 75% of Australia’s fastest growing occupations require STEM Skills - Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths. Yet digitalisation is not the only thing affecting the change in tomorrow’s job market.

Population trends both nationally and regionally are redefining Australia. Demographic and social trends, such as emerging cultural diversity, the implications of an ageing population, household transformations, and increased mobility are creating significant changes. Workforce trends such as teleworking, tenure shifts, multi-career expectations, and emerging attraction, retention, and engagement factors are informing the demands on 21st century workers.

As these technological, generational, educational, and demographic shifts redefine job demands, it’s more important than ever before for individuals to be innovative, collaborative, proactive, and responsive to ensure they remain future-proofed for tomorrow’s workforce.

What does it mean to stay innovative?

In the next 10 years, there will be significant shifts to the labour market. There is a basic reality around job functions in developed economies with a relatively high cost of labour: everything that can be automated, will be automated, and every role that can be offshored to lower cost-base countries will be offshored. However, technology and business innovation will create new and diverse roles in areas that technology can’t compete. Roles that require creative input, people-focus, leadership skills or high-level communication talent can be futureproofed as they are not be effectively replaceable by technology.

Being Collaborative

It’s important not just to focus on academic outcomes but the people skills; not just the learning, but on the ability to work well with others. 1997 was the first year in which we began spending more time looking at screens than in in face to face interaction, and today, individuals spend over 10 hours on screens every day. In tomorrow’s job market, if someone has a good ability to communicate, motivate, and engage – they’ll go far.

Staying Proactive

In today’s flat-structured work environments, people need to be self-leaders and managers and stay self-directed. In previous decades it was the norm to have a very structured workplace with a chain of command where employers were looking for compliance rather than proactive innovation. Today there is the need for a self-starter mentality in every organisation – for employees at all levels to take charge and show proactive initiative.

Being Responsive

It’s important to keep eyes on the external environment. Individuals who can not only remain experts at their craft but extend their knowledge to various domain areas will stay future-proofed. A career that is future-proofed may in fact by its very nature change and adjust nearly every year. Be responsive and observe what’s happening around you.

By being innovative, collaborative, proactive, and responsive to the changes taking place, individuals can navigate the challenge of being future-proofed for tomorrow’s workforce.


Eliane Miles is a social researcher, trends analyst and Director of Research at the internationally recognised McCrindle. As a data analyst she understands the power of big data to inform strategic direction. Managing research across multiple sectors and locations, she is well positioned to understand the mega trends transforming the workplace, household and consumer landscapes. Her expertise is in telling the story embedded in the data and communicating the insights in visual and practical ways.

From the key demographic transformations such as population growth and the ageing workforce to social trends such as changing household structures and emerging lifestyle expectations, from generational change to the impact of technology, Eliane delivers research based presentations dealing with the big global and national trends.

With academic qualifications in community engagement and postgraduate studies in international development and global health, Eliane brings robust, research-based content to her engaging presentations and consulting. As a social researcher, she has been interviewed on these topics on prominent television programs such as National Nine News and Today, as well as on radio and in online media.


To have Eliane present at your next event, please feel free to get in touch via email to kim@mccrindle.com.au or call through to 02 8824 3422

Welcome to our blog...

We have a passion for research that tells a story, that can be presented visually, that brings about change and improves organisations. And we hope these resources help you know the times.

Our Social Media Sites

Facebook | McCrindle Research Social Media YouTube | McCrindle Research Social Media Twitter | McCrindle Research Social Media Flickr | McCrindle Research Social Media Pinterest | McCrindle Research Social Media Google Plus | McCrindle Research Social Media LinkedIn | McCrindle Research Social Media Mark McCrindle Slideshare

Last 150 Articles


australian community trends report social analysis innovation McCridle internet socialites tableau sunny days curiosity women commuting future proof giving Willowdale poor business performance IT Specialists local communities authenticity gold coast Research Director gender the changing face of plans February 16 household house price 40 million keynote showreel Kiwi cultural diversity Word Up cultural diveristy qualitative research cancelling event research pack energy waverton employmer rule keeper gen alpha schools students customer Northern beaches Event small business census data Caregiver slideshare australian social research Love average aussie newspaper statistics ACT Report 2016 house Northern Beaches donate rising house prices chairty deloitte hello fresh Real Estate property educated ACF 2016 volunteering data investing gen z James Ward not for profit McCrindle Speakers 2016 census names generational trends breakfast weather baby ACF christianity logan learning grandparents environment media release criminal housing growth population work mates future proofing omnibus alpha sustainable brand religion cost product global digital group session optus my business awards training Engineering Manager 2016 census results contiki quote choice workers capital city young australians responsive etiquette consumer Maxim Accounting workforce story baby boomers tuesday anzac typical australian income employment hills shire balance Generation X investment social lives train manly work-life property market dare to dream baby names report participants sector millennials renter of the future EFF baby name Australian Trends increasing densification wealth and income distribution professional services TED Gen X careers Skilling click food bank sydney speaker not-for-profit Western Australia young people know the times market research tips dessert NBRS stats mining boom housing demography data 2017 relevant community staff teach graphs Northern Beaches Christian School unaffordable area huffington post perth mythbusters Australia street lifestyle identity earnings 24,000,000 Australia Day 2017 urban living index friends growth social researchers researcher Mark McCrindle in the media the average aussie ipswich schools professional development clothing healthy future collaborative media wealth distribution DESTEL growing population study education future future of work unemployment focus group acf15 volunteers social change prince george "know the times" Australian demographics social shifts storytelling GPO overcast publication ultimo ageing millenials trends Financial Planning Week world future-proof 2020 safe school satisfaction Canberra school food insecurity suburb demographic transformations earn the australian dream census 2016 coffee lovers wealth wolloomooloo the great screenage cloudy days Sydney population year 7 REIV Conference FPA Do It Yourself research services Christmas lunch Australian Bureau of Statistics renting culture Lower Hunter earning business index education research Mount Annan-Currant Hill suburbs not for profit research generations Macquarie University screenage families events travel networking Christchurch new york times screenagers commuters care support infographic younger generations mccrindle tea student 23 million Australian Dream rich interactive Australian communities WA Population Clock generation alpha TAS Financial Planning Association wealth inequality Work place spirituality millionth urban taskforce middle class households impact ideas news easter volunteer proactive bus Sydney’s south west lalor park financial dreams demographics growth of sydney housing affordability who is generation z internships food organisational culture mateship cost of living entertainment communication transport debt Bathburst speakers pack analysis australians staying home more social life technology recap Scouts office marriages supply and demand budget home event Charlotte mortgage family trends of 2016 New Zealand professional presenters buildings narcissism future marriage Social Trend PSI DIY educhat Deaths university wages norwest Research Executive water shopping charity innovative research visualisation celebration weekly earnings workplace culture the hills holidays gig economy going out communicate the lucky country selfie shopping centre teleworking research report national private wealth mccrindle in the media learning styles Australian Population geomapping priorities Aussie thrive cars Gen Y twentyseventeen mentor SMSF coffee media commentary moderators guide skills australian states Myth hunger village shifts data analyst dreaming divorce rate award winner motivate high school define 2012 insights potts point trends analyst System's Architect public transport poker master summer vegemite brand experience Hornsby Shire Council financial independence Real Estate Institute of Victoria Aussies easy rider wellbeing social commentary retirement 10 years census bondi Australian community trends home ownership Vocational education focus groups resource blaxland money ease of travel pyrmont father's day financial future baby names fears environmental scanning state Duchess of Cambridge royal family capital cities Geoff Brailey group christian google sunburnt country social research trend micro apartments personal growth affordability insight trend tuesday futurist HSC in the media victoria moreton bay aged care puzzle list 1994 average Australian conference NEETs survey life changing face of sydney Wagga Wagga social analyst education seasons speakers 2015 research Mark McCrindle rain teachers domestic crime dream rent youth cancel plans research on coffee local engagement Valentine’s Day resilience infographics wedding optimistic urban living sydney hills 1968 award investor medicine learner hills TED talk charities population milestone media activity 1975 Hunter Valley gig residents conference speaker Wellington Cobbitty-Leppington royal national crime rates teacher sydneycity home owner Births ashley mckenzie forum TEDx shopper's pick education future report engage baby name trends intern city The ABC of XYZ pharmacies annual income SRE local community public speaker What is food insecurity? property price aged care woolworths public speaking Queensland: QLD world youth day belief stay home greatness australian communities trends report brands tea conferences marrickville 2013 cooking apartment ABS volunteering NFP event FOMO ashley fell The Daily Edition optus Christmas season CPI financial planning long weekend donation demographic VET VIC kate middleton apartments vegetarian cica toys couple Channel Seven car sydney metro paying to work mythbusting land of the middle class outsourcing entrepreneurial non profit australia population growth challenge eliane miles personalities social media thought leadership forecasting Sydney keynote speaker financial tertiary education neutral bay socialising average sydneysider census results economic affordable Territory career Australian Families organisations relational australian real estate micro megatrends learn communities South Australia #censusfail employmee spend holiday report equip youth unemployment brisbane emerging generations goals live the dream jobs house prices global financial crisis infographic wall year 12 faux-cilising bureau NSW TDE generation hobart visualisation speaker students offenders New South Wales leadership workshop census fail high density future of shopping professional speaker litter faux-cilise daily telegraph pharmacy nfp the hills shire Jura Australia community event meetings Business analysis research data living social casual Netflix education sector Performance Sentiment Index VET sector suburban living forecast staying in children Elderslie-Harrington park cold 2014 finance ACF17 hornsby 1980 Tuesday Trend parents sentiments housing market program office opening in depth interviews Lower Hunter Region Tasmania cash Crime Rates politics sun community engagement speajer government follow friendship builders business princess charlotte Australia Day house price rise Merry Christmas purpose leadership winter blues sydneysiders fresh mccrinlde Tuesday Trends social impact presentations monarchy christmas debate dreams video Channel 7 Australian Census high density apartments salary high density living panel survey design keynote speaker rental stress hopes REIV National Conference mobile national wealth future of education Generation Y facts 24 million leader ethnography public holiday happiness work rise of local Northern Territory Queensland commute grave decision financial fears population map World Water Day Australian Communities Trends low density English SA demographer australian communities forum urban New Zeland university degree Australian schools Wodonga office space emerging technologies demographic trends wealth and income aussie culture mccrindle research experience cancelling plans work from home social issues church google for education Hills Shire Council repayments menai ACT change school students trades townhouses Financial Planning Association of Australia sydney event men faith workplace workshop eliane generation Z mover and shaker wage entrepreneurs of today conference presentation JOMO baby boom meals online shopping faux-ciliser Melbourne professional Jura Coffee teaching jobs of the future shbc visual Australian Home darwin divorce post rationalism SMART data visualisation presentation owning a home Sydney Hills Business Chamber social trends royal baby sector wide study child care baby names australia report new office sector wide Christmas presents internship sports entrepreneur case study housing trends collaboration Education Future Forum ACF2017 social enquiry ageing population sydneysider Res Vis Andrew Duffin CBD social researcher NBRS Architecture language employers tv NT Australians online Adelaide royal influence Kirsten Brewer goal mother's day daily commute emerging trends crows nest baby name predictions mccrindle snapshot global generations January 26th results marketing ferry society social commentator cartodb parenting tattoos trends of 2017 consumerism communications real economy culturally diverse society trends Royals Assistant Store Manager winter Sydney travelling