Issue #[[item.issue__number]] published [[timeFormat(item.date)]]

246 items in FUTURE OF WORK

Journalism is perhaps one of the first industries to record its own visible decline. With big tech eating it’s ad revenue, old media has also been losing the competition for attention to indie influencers more able to deliver to audience expectations and less encumbered by editorial lines. This is a fine lament which manages to also be a rallying cry for the industry to get back it’s mojo. Great read on how an industry describes its own final chapter.
Issue #396 published 12 May 2024
Founder centric blog post which extols the advent of AI as fusing software + labour in a way which will make it hyper efficient for founders to build valuable businesses. Market comparison between the size of services vs saas businesses presents the opportunity, whilst the current / future business idea of selling AI into an existing job description (i.e AI SDR’s) vs selling AI into an entire servive (i.e AI law firm). Fascinating, and frightening, you know the emotional journey by now.
Issue #394 published 28 Apr 2024
This is a real curate’s egg of a piece - some profound ideas in here mixed in with some bad choices and startup cliches. The good: excellent 2 x 2 matrix on how to plot your service offering, very useful binary categorisation of services to ‘help you do it’ vs ‘do it for you’ and fundamentally sound idea that the professional services market is ripe for AI-assisted disruption (see McKinsey pay to quit). The bad: spyware Palantir as example to follow? Decent brainfood, regardless 🤣
Issue #392 published 14 Apr 2024
So I think ‘soft life’ is a 2024 version of ‘lying flat’ - a counter culture phenomena where Millenials who, faced with cost of living crisis, the third economic recession in their lifetimes, as well as the realisation that they are never going to be able to afford a house, give up on the rat race and downshift. Economists will say that this is chronic ‘underemployment’ but I think there is any way to look at it. What do you think?
Issue #391 published 7 Apr 2024
Mining via Remote
We often think of remote working as exclusively a white collar, knowledge based work, but there is another form which involves robotics, and we’re increasingly seeing it, especially in the dangerous work. Short video of Chinese miners using remote controlled robots where once there would be human beings with pick axes. The commentator additionally mentions the possibility of connecting this with the gaming sector, an intriguing solution to labour crisis in these difficult-to-do / hard-to-sell occupations.
Issue #390 published 31 Mar 2024
Boundaryless HR, Human sustainability, Quantified organisation, Transparency paradox…this report from Deloitte Insights explores them all in 122 pages of powerful future thinking. It’s peppered with cameo case studies from the likes of IKEA, Hitachi, PayPal and more which chains down the abstract and helps us visualise how these concepts manifest in the practical world. It’s a must read folks.
Issue #388 published 17 Mar 2024
Some stunning statistics from fintech unicorn Klarna, who implemented an AI powered CS agent only a month ago: 25% reduction in repeat enquiries, on par with NPS score, call resolution in 2 minutes instead of 11 minutes. At 2.3 million conversations over the month trial, it was the equivalent of 700 full time agents. Tweet here, Klarna’s own blog post here. H/T to brainfooder Jacob Sten Madsen for the share in the online community.
Issue #386 published 3 Mar 2024
Data from Upwork has been one of the earliest pieces of evidence that AI is indeed having a disruptive impact on jobs - particularly translation, copywriting and social media marketing going down in terms of number of jobs and charge rate. Interestingly, we’re also see an increase in demand video editing / post production, which suggests what exactly? AI generated output not entirely there yet, or perhaps a shift of resources from in-house to gig because it nearly is? Nice piece of research this.
Issue #386 published 3 Mar 2024
With OpenAI’s release of text-to-video Sora last week was a stunning demonstration of the accelerating innovation rate of AI, with some very obvious implications for the media and entertainment industries. We have to beg the question: what type of work is going to be insulated from successive waves of disruption? Anything with high collaboration intensity, novel configurations and where context is more important than the content: professional bridesmaid
Issue #384 published 22 Feb 2024
Optimistic tones from Amy Webb on the robust future of work in the era of GenAI. It’s a conventional take - AI saves time, therefore that time will convert to further growth. This may work for a consultant/entrepreneur but it operates differently for a factory that is about to be automated, because the issue isn’t that AI will save time, it is who ends up capturing the time saved. Still, this is a representative case for techno-optimist position of AI workforce disintermediation and therefore well worth a watch.
Issue #381 published 28 Jan 2024
There is no better synthesizer in our business than Josh Bersin. You might not agree with everyone he says, or on the weighting of the claims, but if you want one person to tell the story of intersection between technology and work, this remains the guy. The ‘Productivity Advantage’ is the main idea in his thesis for 2024 and it’s hard to argue with the basic premise that we are in a global push for productivity (a.k.a profitability) in 2024. Easy reading, good substrate for any future brainfood.
Issue #381 published 28 Jan 2024
I would start by reading the methodology at the back: three scenarios modelled by researchers at Accenture: 1) Aggressive 2) Cautious 3) People centred. Obviously, No3 is favoured, but what are the chances when focus on achieving profitability has become a global phenomenon? 75% of organisations still lack a plan to re-skill their workforce for the GenAI present - pretty clear we have to take it upon ourselves to do so. Good read this, but do cut through the fluff. H/T to brainfooder Andy Headworth for the share.
Issue #381 published 28 Jan 2024
Interesting research from brainfooder David Kieffer on the state of the French recruiter market in 2023. The rise of the freelancer recruiter and the occasional coagulation of these indies into recruitment collectives are two trends worth noting. Companies are going to have a diverse range of options when engaging recruiters in 2024. In French, but Google translate works well and if in doubt, of course we now have AI to do the translations for you.
Issue #373 published 3 Dec 2023
Of 2000+ public companies, only 92 had the Co-CEO format. Why is this and…should we have more? Fascinating conversation debating the pros and cons of CEO-pair structure, using the analogy of the family - and the model of the family business - to make the case. Includes fascinating interview with one half of perhaps the most famous Co-CEO pair, Jim Balsillie at Research In Motion. There is of course also the ‘No-CEO’ model, perhaps that will win in the end…
Issue #367 published 22 Oct 2023
Brainfooder Laetitia Vitaud (sign up her newsletter btw, it’s excellent) on the impact of climate change on how we work. Particularly interesting idea is to separate workers between those who can avoid heat (cool collar) and those who cannot (hot collar). As ever, it is the essential workers (remember them?) who are in the front line to suffer the most. Great essay, important and under discussed topic. Further reading here
Issue #359 published 27 Aug 2023
The other side of ‘productivity gains’ is of course, widespread displacement of human beings doing the work. What are the millions of people who currently drive for a living going to be doing when we have autonomous vehicles? Pew Research Centre with a Goldman Sachs-like research piece, breaking down jobs into tasks, scoring how significant these tasks are and then assessing how exposed they are to AI. Interesting twist is overlaying of demographic data. McKinsey incidentally also have a similar report out - Generative AI and the Future of Work in America. Read both of these as companion pieces, H/T to brainfooder Randy Bailey for the share
Issue #357 published 13 Aug 2023
Is there a company in a stronger position in the AI-enabled future than Microsoft? Own the desktop, own Github, own LinkedIn, major stakeholder in OpenAI. When Microsoft switches on co-pilot for everyone, it will be a historical moment for how we work. CEO Satya Nadella with a key at MS Inspire a couple weeks ago - well worth a watch / listen
Issue #355 published 30 Jul 2023
The process of technology acquisition is often also a process of de-skilling as we find greater efficacy and efficiency in using tools rather than investing time in learning the old skills. We move up stream to discover new innovation, work and purpose. I am sure that is the hope graphic designers have. Some interesting thoughts on where we might be going in this short essay on creation / destruction, decent screen cap of table of occupations of the future. H/T to brainfooder Vibha Bhatia for the share
Issue #350 published 25 Jun 2023
The massive expansion of university education in the 1990’s-2010’s was once meant to produce the highly educated workforce which would power national economies based on knowledge work and ‘intangible value’. But with hostile de-globalisation slowing down and reversing economic growth, along with the new risk of AI displacing those very same knowledge workers, elevated expectations may now need a reset. Fascinating set of stories coming out of China of graduates now doing gig and blue collar work; worth reading alongside comparable stories everywhere else.
Issue #347 published 4 Jun 2023
Brainfooder Kevin Wheeler is one of the few futurists who actually deserve the description - his speculations are provocative but grounded in a sober analysis of underlying trends projected forward to logical conclusion. Here he present 4 potential scenarios for the future of recruiting - I particularly like the idea of ‘talent concierge’. We need to start think about this, because we are either going to shape the future or be shaped by it. PS: Kevin will be joining Brainfood Live to talk Demographic Crisis and Future of Work next month. Register here
Issue #346 published 28 May 2023
If you conduct a search for the phrase ‘Fractional’ on LinkedIn you see an increasing number of senior execs - CMO’s, CTO’s, CFO’s - styling themselves this way. I like the term, basically it effectively describes splitting of time between multiple employers, and is a distinct form of operating model compared to your classic consultant or freelancer. The person is operating fully in role, just not sitting there 40 hours a week. I already know some of you are doing this - worth a Brainfood Live on the topic at some point? Let me know if you wanna…
Issue #345 published 21 May 2023
Will AI Fix Work
With Microsoft about to launch 365 Copilot and disseminate AI across hundreds of millions of white collar workers, you might expect them to be pretty much pro-AI. This article outlines how Microsoft thinks AI will help - release humanity from ‘digital debt’ and provide every worker with an AI assistant to save us from burnout. It’s an optimists vision, I think one which will happen for those who make it to Elsyium of AI enablement. Anyways, Microsoft are going to do it, so this is a necessary read.
Issue #344 published 14 May 2023

I could easily see 30% of that getting replaced by AI and automation over a five-year period

IBM CEO Arvind Krishna, referring to the 26,000 vacancies in back office and support functions (HR notably included among them…) now put on hold as a result of this assessment. GAI is transforming the shape of business, the future of which will be far smaller and far leaner, with the consequential reduction in organisational complexity. Real threat to recruiters is not that ‘AI will replace us’ but that AI will replace the jobs we recruit for. H/T to brainfooder Hassam Alam for the share in online community.
Issue #343 published 7 May 2023
The equity gains of Western feminism is often purchased at the price of offshoring or delegating lower status work to other women of worse means, from poorer countries. The continuing intrusion of the market solutions into broken social relations continues - we already delegate childcare, why no witt delegate pregnancy too? Fascinating and uncomfortable story on an industry solving problems of our own creation.
Issue #336 published 19 Mar 2023
One of the earliest memes on workforce automation was the promise that technology would release housewives from the burdens of domestic work. It became a cruel joke as two income households became the norm for families struggling to keep above the cost of living. Interesting academic piece now suggests that the original Keynesian dream might now actually be happening. What this means for the unpaid workers nobody knows. PS: quite technical so copy paste into ChatGPT for an accessible summary.
Issue #334 published 5 Mar 2023
I promise this is the last predictions post for 2023. Our friends at Radancy pulled together some non-mainstream ideas on what is going to happen in TA this year, so I thought this to be worth a look. My favourite? Increasing pixellation of work, leading to increasingly diffusion of the workers. Nice to see brainfood channels be referenced a few times - how on earth did we ever become a credible source 🤣? Very decent read, so have a go here.
Issue #330 published 5 Feb 2023
Important trends for not only 2023 but beyond as social contract between workers and companies continues the shift toward looser, more flexible, more contingent relationships. Two trends in particular of vital important to talent acquisition professionals - the increasing emphasis on internal mobility and the expansion of the interim workers in workforce population. We’re going to need a new name, and an expanded scope or else the department will shrink in importance along with the demand. Accessible report, download it here. H/T to brainfooder Heidi Wassini for the share in the brainfood online community.
Issue #329 published 29 Jan 2023
Josh Bersin is another influencer we should all know by now. This predictions post on the HR Tech market is excellent for two reasons: firstly, the degree of specificity he gets into without actually calling the deals and secondly, the emerging taxonomy of HR tech products which posts like this really help crystallise. Worth reading for this part alone, helps you think about the HR Technology landscape and how to pieces all fit together. Great to see an in copy shout out for Stacey Harris also for the 25th Sapient Insights HR Tech survey - free to download, so all tech entrepreneurs / buyers should really do so.
Issue #325 published 1 Jan 2023
This dude somehow managed to get Sahil Lavingia, founder of e-book self publishing phenomenon Gumroad, which also happens to be an organisation made up entirely of part time employees. Is is a possible future for how we organise labour? Fractional workers is going to be a thing, so why not build a company entirely of them. Pt1 and Pt2 of a great interview - both worth a watch and listen.
Issue #323 published 18 Dec 2022
So this is a little bit of pitch for Flexa, but the personal story is pertinent. Working in an investment banking, before life circumstances inspired a pivot to flexible working. Have a listen.
Issue #313 published 9 Oct 2022
Star Wars might’ve been the first franchise to use deep fakes of real actors when they used CGI of the late Carrie Fisher to complete Princess Leia’s story arc. Now with we see another movie icon theoretically live forever, with James Earl Jones unmistakable voice now to be generated by AI whilst the actor himself goes into well deserved retirement. Another example? Bruce Willis becomes the first celebrity to sell rights to a deepfake firm, who will presumably ensure the immortality of John McClane. We might already seen the last of the great movie stars, as producers might increasingly prefer to preserve existing ones ad infinitum or even digitally resurrect those who are long gone. It is a fascinating future of work…
NB: Willis has now denied the report
Issue #312 published 2 Oct 2022
News in the UK has been dominated by new Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s blockbusting mini-budget, labelled the biggest tax cutting bonanza for 37 years. Whilst the return to trickle down economics will have impact on every business in the country, there are also decisions which especially impact the sector, such as the roll back of liability for IR35. Conversations on HN covers the particulars as well as any media source.
Issue #311 published 25 Sep 2022
Fractional Work
What is ‘fractional work’ and why is it becoming more of a phenomena? I speculate away with brainfooders Eveliese Luiting and Kristel Moedt on their outstanding interview podcast, People Masterminds.
Issue #309 published 11 Sep 2022
As society becomes ever more fragmented, it stands to reason that market opportunities will emerge to replace what was once performed by friends we no longer have. Particularly interesting in this example from Japan was the moving criteria of qualifications for this new career path of ‘bridesmaid’s for hire’ - mainly, are you shorter than the prospective bride? Fascinating futures, already here.
Issue #306 published 21 Aug 2022
Brainfooder Kevin Wheeler with another superb speculative essay, contextualising the talent shortage with demographic decline which ultimately must translate into less workers available to do the work. Increasing salary is robbing Peter to pay Paul and - when you think about it - so is immigration. We need to prepare to build companies which simply require less, more productive workers. Implications for recruiting should be clear.
Issue #304 published 7 Aug 2022
Did you know that ‘the mods’ who maintain the standard of content on Reddit’s forums do 466 hours of work every day – labour that would cost 2.8 per cent of the firm’s revenue? Community management is a job, but one which is acquires social but not material return. Any community managers here, can you relate?
Issue #300 published 10 Jul 2022
…So if we are going to go back to the office in some form, we do have to improve the commute. How about doing it via a flying EV? Confidently named Jetson have a hoverbike, and their CEO flew in it, last week in a world’s first. Cool video footage of it, well worth a watch.
Issue #298 published 26 Jun 2022
The worlds of online fantasy and in-person reality are merging into something we’ve never seen before. From virtualised ABBA doing live shows, to haptic suit wearing Twitch streamers to virtual pop bands in China, there’s usually human beings doing the what seems to be very much a possible future of work.
Issue #297 published 19 Jun 2022
New term for us to learn: ‘workforce pixelation’. Visualise an image getting pixelated and the analogy immediately makes sense - work is being disaggregated into tasks, and increasingly, these tasks may be done by different people across functions, and even across employer boundaries. It certainly does increase organisational agility, but it might also disintegrate that organisation. Easy read - have a go here
Issue #296 published 12 Jun 2022
What is ‘quantitative investing’? It’s basically using the wisdom of the crowd - the human collective intelligence - the make investment decisions. It’s Azeem Azhar with Numerai’s Richard Craib on how better decisions can be made. H/T Bas van de Haterd for the share.
Issue #295 published 5 Jun 2022
If you think LinkedIn is a buggy POS website that could really do with a code refactor then maybe you can actually help - and make money by doing so. Bug Bounty Programs have been around for a long time, but this appears to be the first time LinkedIn is providing rewards to users who find stuff they have missed. Dispersal of quality assurance to the users is a kind of future of work so get involved in the future folks - have at it here
Issue #295 published 5 Jun 2022
There are a lot of future casting out there, but this report from Microsoft is maybe the definitive on ‘where we are now’ + ‘where we are going to be’ with regards to the workplace, remote, AR/VR, communications, holistic management and the rest. Essential reading, essential download. Do it here
Issue #295 published 5 Jun 2022
The job entails Samuel sitting, or standing, or sometimes sleeping, in lines: waiting for theater tickets, iPhone releases, and once for someone to die as part of a macabre French art exhibit. 
You can imagine this work being commoditised very quickly in future but for the early few pioneers there may be entrepreneurial fortunes to be made.
Issue #292 published 15 May 2022
I'm A Fucking Webmaster
Let me just start by saying this is the single best thing I’ve read in ages 🤣. I’ll also age myself by saying I used to recruit these folks back in the early days of Web1.0. Webmastering a long dead job, but one which manages to give us a clue on what the future of good work looks like, jobs with impact + variety. It’s a wonderful lament
Issue #292 published 15 May 2022
The push / pull factor of both employers and employees wanting great flexibility is reshaping the world of work. If the 9 to 5 no longer offers security, when a great deal of the value of it disappears. A lot of people want to hedge their income streams, and whether this is misplaced confidence or not, it is the reality of the hiring landscape today. ‘Employers’ have to lean into this and design career journeys that include workers oscillating in / out of FTE with them. Have a read here
Issue #288 published 17 Apr 2022
Some effusive praise for one of the most exciting developments in AI in recent years; Github’s Copilot is essentially a code auto-generator, leveraging the best solutions committed by hundreds of human software engineers trying to solve similar problems in the past. OP rates the value in terms of time save + better quality output and rates his chances of tech unemployment as…at least 10 years away. It is, inevitably, coming though.
Issue #287 published 10 Apr 2022
Do you have a melodious voice? Been thinking about this more recently, as my actual voice is pretty bang average and I think I could improve it. However, this product was not what I had in mind…..a voice as a service (VaaS) solution that allows anyone to create, manage, share, and monetize - your voice. Ted Williams should be making millions right now
Issue #284 published 20 Mar 2022
Interesting mashup between Github and LinkedIn, tracking how skills have changed over the years for the 800 million of us now on LinkedIn. A bit of a fiddly UI to manipulate but plenty of data to pile into. Obviously I searched first for ‘global’ and ‘recruiter’ and guess what? Skills have stayed pretty much the same, make of this what you will. Have a play here. H/T brainfooder Nathan Perrott for the share
Issue #283 published 13 Mar 2022
It’s probably an unfair stereotype that weirdly wonderful things happen in the Land of the Rising Sun but there does seem to be a decent body of evidence 🤣. Cool story, maybe a work of art.
Issue #276 published 23 Jan 2022
I missed this predictions post from the legendary Tom Haak last year and so I want to bring it to your attention here. So many things to like about this - it is deeply thoughtful, well referenced, provides guides for both further action and links for further reading. It’s probably the best predictions post I’ve read for a single author, so have a read, here.
Issue #276 published 23 Jan 2022
Bit of curates egg this one - the skeleton of a great research piece is here, especially with the work trends ➡️ ‘talent implication’ structure, but it could really have done with more depth of analysis. Still a a decent trends report with a recruiting (it’s from Korn Ferry) focus. Download it here
Issue #273 published 2 Jan 2022
Always great to hear from Google CEO’s Sundar Pichai on the future of his 144,000-person workforce and how to build in flexibility for a company of this size. 1-2-1 interview, 15 minutes, here - it’s excellent stuff. H/T to brainfooder Bas van de Haterd for the share.
Issue #268 published 28 Nov 2021
We often talk about creating an ‘agile workforce’ without understanding the implications of an organisation which can scale up / down resources according to demand. It means less full time employees, less talent ‘acquisition’, greater diversification of employment types and more ‘talent access’. Great analysis from Lynda Gratton.
Issue #268 published 28 Nov 2021
Very decent summary of the key trends which present both risk and opportunity for HR. In TA, there has been a movement to row away from HR and become a distinct function ‘at the top table’, but in light of these trends, I rather think movement in the opposite direction is the wiser move. Worth a read
Issue #268 published 28 Nov 2021
There are a ton of great concepts in this interview between techno-pessimists Laetitia Vitaud and Kevin Roose. One thing we can be sure of, is that technological innovation cannot be frustrated and will always outpace cultural values. The only responsible thing to do is not be an ‘end point’.
Issue #267 published 21 Nov 2021
How are we to understand people who are ‘experts’ when creation and dissemination of the knowledge has been so democratised that we no longer share consensus on what is true? Truly fascinating long read with contributions from science, arts, business and more. Very worthy read folks. H/T to brainfooder Denys Dinkevych for the share.
Issue #266 published 14 Nov 2021
Two jobs at Alcon Entertainment ensure “Blade Runner” characters and plot points “have a logic within the canon.”
This is the sort of job that no one would ever think would exist, but as we increasingly spend more time in fictional worlds, we’re going to need curators for the universe.
Issue #264 published 31 Oct 2021
The A3 Work Revolution
Most of us have been participants of the ‘anytime, anyplace, anywhere’ work experiment - and it’s pretty clear that things will never be going back to the way they were. Some interesting visuals in this report from Talent Alpha - particularly on the rise of alternative work relationships beyond FTE. Download for free here, no requirement for email.
Issue #263 published 24 Oct 2021
Leaving aside the opening paragraphs which rather inaccurately categorises ‘creators’ as a just another subset of freelancer, this post improves as you go, especially in the main body of the piece, which makes the claim that networks+communication tech enable many people to exit employment in favour of solo operating. Makes you think of what the purpose of the firm is really, which is all the excuse I need to bring up Ronald Coase again….
Issue #260 published 3 Oct 2021
HR Tech was on last week, and a great deal has been written about the world’s biggest showcase for Recruiting and HR technology. Catch up with Josh Bersin’s preview post here, and read alongside brainfooder Tim Sackett‘s review on Madeline Laureno’s talk post event. H/T brainfooder Markellos Diorinos for the share.
Issue #260 published 3 Oct 2021
Roblox is the gaming platform that enables players to create games that other users can play. It’s a revolution no one in our business is talking about, mainly because TA / HR routinely ignores people who cannot become employees. Fascinating video on the creator economy, and what to do when the creators are kids…
Issue #258 published 19 Sep 2021
About Super Follows
With ‘Super Follows’ now being rolled out, Twitter joins the creator economy by allowing users to monetise their tweets via a subscription model - worth a shot if you’ve got a big following, I’d say. It’s inevitable that somebody in the brainfood community is going to make a success out of being a twitter hero, so why not you?
btw: anyone who really wants to know whats going to happen on twitter should follow Jane Manchung Wong - she’s like the Irina for twitter.
Issue #256 published 5 Sep 2021
They said AI will bring new kinds of work nobody ever thought would exist….I guess being a ‘rentable face’ might qualify? This story opens so many doors it is difficult categorise - future of work, potential D&I solution, workforce automation - even potentially blockchain. The future escapes analogy and is arriving whether we are comfortable with it or not. Have a read.
Also: feel free to rent your face out.
Issue #256 published 5 Sep 2021
Sex work is work, and this move by OnlyFans - likely forced upon them by payments providers who are keen to avoid liability risk of facilitating potentially criminal activities - is devastating news for the many thousands of creators who have made a living on the platform. The requirement for a blockchain based successor has never been more clear.
Issue #254 published 22 Aug 2021
This post is interesting for so many reasons; it’s about OnlyFans for a start, perhaps the first significant exemplar of a platform for the creator economy; it conducts relevant research on the potential earnings creators can expect to make (a figure platforms are incentivised to inflate) and also includes some interesting methodology on web scraping techniques at the end which may be of interest to our more technically minded readers. The phrase ‘uberisation of w8nking’? That’s a bonus
Issue #253 published 16 Aug 2021
Money is flowing into HR Tech as investors gamble on which products are going to become the core platforms for the new shape of business in the post pandemic era. Great summary from brainfooder Andrew Spence, on 24 such products to keep an eye on.
Issue #252 published 8 Aug 2021
Internal research conducted by Microsoft (including contributions from subdivisions Github, LinkedIn, Microsoft Research, Xbox and Azure) on the impact of pandemic on the future of work. It’s one of the most impressive pieces of primary research I’ve seen - relevant (company is the unit of analysis), comprehensive (varied impact according to role / function / department) and accessible (written in human language). Everyone should read / download.
H/T brainfooder Colin Donnery for the share
Issue #248 published 11 Jul 2021
Not only hiring creators to directly create content, but platforms hiring engineers to enable more creators to emerge. It’s the second stage of media creation - media monetisation - and a potential path for a few of us here. Great read
Issue #248 published 11 Jul 2021
56 ‘delta’s (Distinct Elements of Talent) from Mckinsey&Co, skills that you need as a citizen in a future that - lets face it - is already here. The self reported results is less interesting than the skills table themselves - a decent guide for personal / team development. Have a read
Issue #247 published 4 Jul 2021
Human ingenuity often occurs on edges of legality. The popularity of ‘loyalty point’ influencers in Japan shows that a great many of us would join the exploitation of systems of reward that have poorly designed rules. That these influencers can further convert their popularity into cash via sponsorships and donations is just is a new form of economics.
Issue #246 published 27 Jun 2021
Outstanding article of the demands on time for what now must be recognised as new kind of job: the community builder. Takes a while to get going but once there, this post delivers on the what, why and how of the job. Have a read if you run a community, or plan to any time in future.
Issue #242 published 30 May 2021
Gitcoin is looking to hire a Meme Artist / Sh1tposter + Community Manager to join their team. This is a full-time position that is 100% remote with no geographical restrictions. Work remotely from anywhere.
Never tell the kids to ‘get a proper job’ because we might not be best placed to know what such a thing is anymore. PS: this actually looks like a pretty great opportunity.
Issue #242 published 30 May 2021
Twitter Blue
Jane Manchun Wong is like the Irina Shamaeva of Twitter - finding stuff out about the platform before even half the product team knows about it. Twitter launching a paid version, which looks like a Substack competitor. Reminder that Recruiting Brainfood is hosted on Revue, purchased by Twitter earlier this year, so some significance for us here. Will this newsletter become a paid twitter channel? No idea, so follow me there folks, as it could be where RB ends up
Issue #241 published 23 May 2021
Work-from-Home Facilitator, Fitness Commitment Counsellor, Algorithm Bias Auditor, Cyber Calamity Forecaster. I don’t think we’re seeing any of these jobs live yet but they have moved from the realm of sci-fi into plausible reality. Easy brainfood
Issue #241 published 23 May 2021
Introducing Tip Jar
Twitter product team seems to have woken from some sort of slumber and began shipping significant new features seemingly by the week. Summary of recent moves here - but most interesting for us is Tip Jar. First major social network to move into creator economy? Looks like it to me.
Issue #239 published 9 May 2021
The Technician
Incredible story of laid off games developer who invested $30K into motion capture body suit in order to become ‘Miko’ - a virtual streamer, now one of the most popular livestreamers on Twitch. This is Ready Player One folks, and bounties await for those who can successful connect the spaces we inhabit.
Issue #239 published 9 May 2021
Workforce Ecosystems
The replacement of mechanical with biological metaphors when discussing the organisation of human work is perhaps long overdue. I wonder whether some of the cultural challenges we’ve briefly covered today come from the breakdown of ‘the-company-as-a-factory’ model. As TA / HR, we have to lead the conversation here. This report from Deloitte looks at the rise of alternative workers and what this for hiring and management - let’s become experts at this.
Issue #238 published 2 May 2021
Li Jin has lead the conversation with some early thinking (and coining) of the ‘passion economy’. Its a fascinating space where creator + community together create the value. Unconvincing case here though that platforms should be the ones paying the creators, when there is a stronger body of evidence that creators can make much more, indirectly via advertisers or directly via subscribers. Have a read, as this is certainly a possible future path for some of us.
Issue #238 published 2 May 2021
Why Work Independently?
It takes seriously good writing to pull today’s audience through a long text only essay. This essay is from an ‘independent researcher’ who outlines his thoughts on the trade offs between flexibility vs consistency (of income) and how to build a sustainable solopreneur business.
Issue #236 published 18 Apr 2021
Incredible essay from an anonymous author who pursued FIRE (Financially Independent / Retire Early), achieved it in 2015 and dropped out, and now writes an update 6 years later. What happens when you do actually ‘make it’? It is maybe a question more of us need to ask.
Issue #233 published 28 Mar 2021
Employers will shift from managing the employee experience to managing the life experience of their employees
The first of 9 trends outlined by Harvard Business Review earlier this year that predict changes to the way we work. I found myself agreeing with every one. There are a lot of these future gazing posts out there, but if you are looking for one high level, digestible, summary, this is as good as it comes. Have a read here
Issue #233 published 28 Mar 2021
What is the impact of the pandemic on labour demand? Less of it overall, are the hard fax, and particularly so in those industries which require workers to be physically proximate. The ‘proximity score’ for job categories is useful - maybe something we can use as we analysis workforce composition to future proof our organisations. Must read folks
Issue #230 published 7 Mar 2021
The unionisation of tech and digital workers is a phenomenon which has been gathering pace over the past few years. People vs the Platform is the modern replay of worker vs owner. Here is the MWU manifesto - let me know if any of you decide to join it
Issue #229 published 28 Feb 2021
7 Trends Future Of Work
Laetitia Vitaud is really an outstanding thinker of the future of work, especially coming from a feminist perspective. I highly recommend her writing and also her twitter. Here is a condensed and accessible version of some of the main themes she touches upon - artisanal work, emotional (unpaid) labour, unbundling of jobs. Have a read - H/T brainfooder Pedro Oliveira for the share.
Issue #228 published 21 Feb 2021
Is Japan really quite strange, or this is just a Western fetish for exotica? Maybe a bit of both, but the stories of strangeness from Japan keep coming. Shoji Morimoto advertises himself as a person who can “eat and drink, and give simple feedback, but do nothing more” - and he’s inundated with work. Persistent zero economic growth, collapsing birthrate, Hikikomori ….Japan’s weirdness may merely be a jarring glimpse of a future we might all one day share. H/T brainfooder Bas van de Haterd for the share in the fb group
Issue #227 published 14 Feb 2021
The Future Of Careers
Diversification of your revenue stream is the primary motivation behind the repurposing of the Brainfood Hall of Fame. So it is fair to say, I’m pretty much in alignment with OP on the prospects of the linear career path, and the rise of the portfolio worker. Have a read here, if you too want to find your Ikigai
Issue #227 published 14 Feb 2021
Pretty much anything that brainfooder Heather McGowan writes is a must read, but this series in Forbes is simply superb: Perishable skills, ‘Promethean’ revolutions, the Skills Abyss and the inability of academic management of knowledge transfer to bridge the ‘skills abyss’. Read every word folks.
Issue #226 published 7 Feb 2021
Fascinating tweet thread on the intersection of fan economy, on demand food delivery and maybe the total reinvention of business. Mr Beast - he of the 50 million Youtube subscriber channel - conducted a one day simultaneous launch of 300 restaurants, online. Must read for futurists, dropshippers, influencer wannabes and anyone else interested in a potential future shape of business
Issue #222 published 10 Jan 2021
Alphabet Workers Union
Big tech in the news this past week, with what appears to be unprecedented coordinated action against far right - Twitter following Zuckerberg in permanently banning US President Donald Trump from Twitter, Google removing the Mercer backed Parler from Google store, Apple threatening to do the same , even Shopify de-listing Trump store from its e-commerce platform. The relationship between big tech vs big government is one to watch, a facet of a wider tension in society which also finds expression within those tech companies. Google workers unionise this past week, in what otherwise might’ve been news. Here is the link to the AWU homepage. H/T to brainfooder Tris Revill for the share in the fb group
Issue #222 published 10 Jan 2021
Going to complete the brainfood segment with some longer term projections; this essay from David Mattin is well worth a read, especially on the idea of businesses being ‘public goods’ and embracing uber transparency as default. It’s great marketing folks, maybe the only one that can regain trust. Have a read
Issue #221 published 3 Jan 2021
Excellent piece of crowdsourcing from LinkedIn: some interesting projections: travel industry going subscription route, conversion of commercial to residential real estate, the arrival of the 3-2-2 working week. Have a read here
PS: great to see local hoteliers Citizen M and Hoxton mention in this - would prob subscribe to a use anywhere anytime service.
Issue #221 published 3 Jan 2021
100 Jobs of the Future
One of the first post of the year - really before we knew anything about what this year had in store for us - and it bears the re-reading extraordinarily well. Superbly researched, beautifully presented, there isn’t a single page of filler here. Must read.
Issue #220 published 27 Dec 2020
Li Jin has done more than anyone to describe a new category of work - the ‘creator economy’ is essentially the Youtuber model - where an individual acquires audience which can then be monetised via direct subscriptions or sponsorship (brainfood is the latter in case you hadn’t noticed) or maybe both.
However, what makes some creators successful is also what makes most fail - the amplification power of the platforms. Li Jin’s 10 recommendations on how to expand the creator class here - well worth a read if you want to join Jin’s activism or understand what challenges are going to be in your way if you want to start a business model like this.
Issue #219 published 20 Dec 2020
DI drops its annual Human Capital Trends report - listing 5 trends its identified as things to think about for 2021. These are 1) baking employee well being into the job design, 2) employee agency in skills development 3) rapid unscheduled reorganisations of resources 4) total talent ecosystem and (therefore) 5) necessary expansion of scope for HR (TA needs to rapidly fold itself back into HR btw). Anyways, read it yourself here, download the pdf here
Issue #218 published 13 Dec 2020
Pay Me or Fork This
Open source communities are a fascinating laboratory for observing future-of-work scenarios play out. The free rider problem is an inherent risk in open source, and whilst not a problem under implicitly agreed fair use rules, it does become irksome when multi-million dollar businesses are the ones doing i., So Marak is downing tools. Top comment on the post on HN on the options available for creators , none of which seem too great
Issue #217 published 6 Dec 2020
Start of a promising series on Forbes by brainfooder Heather McGowan, who makes the case for deeper investment in human capital in order to create the sort of self-updating workforce which can keep with the rate of change. An excellent essay with a signature McGowan visualisation on the stages of life.
Issue #214 published 16 Nov 2020
Digestible report from World Economic Forum, acts as a tone setter for ‘where we are now’ with some signposts as to where we are going to go. Not radical enough in my view (still talking hybrid model - come again??) but a decent primer on the key elements to think about in organisational design. Have a read here
Issue #212 published 2 Nov 2020
Josh Bersin brings us a new HR maturity model - administrative (1.0), service orientated (2.0) and agile consultancy (3.0). Which one are you now, and which one do you want to be? As ever with Bersin, some cool conceptual tools and frameworks in this call to action for HR
Issue #212 published 2 Nov 2020
Interesting speculations on this LinkedIn post, several of which are particularly well argued. The changing nature of business = resulting in changing competency profiles of candidates required, is probably a topic we’re going to run in Brainfood Live shortly. (Follow the channel if you’d like to get involved).
Issue #211 published 26 Oct 2020
We find ourselves at a defining moment: the decisions and choices we make today will determine the course of entire generations’ lives and livelihoods.
Essential report from the World Economic Forum. Must read so download here
Issue #211 published 26 Oct 2020
Exceptional white paper on the world of professional services from our buddies at ProFinda. Obviously must read if you’re in consulting, but of value to everyone who is on this newsletter as there are some interesting concepts and language, which can help us build the toolkit to tackle the challenges of post pandemic world of work. Have a read, here
Issue #210 published 18 Oct 2020
Two findings stand out: the rather conservative projection on the extent of remote work (1/10th of workforce, ‘some days’ of the week?) by exec level and the concurrent drive to diversify on premise workforce away from FTE. Management fear losing their grip? Take a look at this accessible report summary. H/T to brainfooder Adam Gordon for the share in the fb group
Issue #209 published 11 Oct 2020
New term for me: ‘adjacent skills’, in this context, meaning skills which are closely related to what you do, but perhaps are usually done by someone else. Neat exercise to think what they may be for us in the people business. Also useful to think about we seek greater agility in our career pathing. Have a read and a think here
Issue #208 published 4 Oct 2020
Andreesen Horowitz have been exhorting startups to build the next generation job board / matching platform, using blog posts like this to signal what they want to see built. Lots of things to thing about here - the content of what they say, the purpose behind why they are saying it, and how effective this technique might actually be for future product development. H/T to brainfooder Mitasha Singh for the share in the fb group
Issue #207 published 27 Sep 2020
Very promising resource for those who want to access and contribute to the future of work from the HR perspective. Couldn’t be anyone else other than brainfoder Lars Schmidt on this case could it?😉 - add to it, if you can.
Issue #206 published 20 Sep 2020
This is the sort of job no one could’ve imagined only 9 months ago - a person paid for DJ-ing crowd noise to the action on the sports field. It’s unquestionably essential for the sports entertainment, really interested to know how you would be assessed for such a job. If anyone at DAZN has any insight on this, let me know….
Issue #205 published 13 Sep 2020
More on OnlyFans, which to my mind is rapidly become the petri dish for how make a business in the ’passion economy’. Turns out, dedicated fans will be pay big bucks for hyper personalised, exclusive content. What’s new? Ownership of the means of production and distribution folks. A plausible future for some of us here, so we had better get acquainted with the mechanics on how this works (and get reading up on your Karl Marx…)
Issue #205 published 13 Sep 2020
What is more important: own the content or means of distributing that content? OnlyFans creators are figuring out what Youtubers, IOS app developers, Amazon e-tailers - and Reid Hoffman - have long known. Keep an eye on this theme - the ’passion economy’ will be a legit pathway for many of us and we will encounter these same challenges in white collar work - not only how to produce the work, but how to distribute to folks who might want to buy it.
Issue #204 published 6 Sep 2020
37 predictions for the future of work in the coming decade - it’s a fascinating projection, made all the more consumable by the bullet point like format of a twitter thread. Great brainfood folks, so have at it here H/T brainfooder Pedro Oliveira for the share.
Issue #202 published 23 Aug 2020
OnlyFans is big news…and referenced in Li Jin’s Unbundling of Work from Employment post earlier in this newsletter. Sex workers taking ownership of their business, or the inviduous pornification of society? It’s going to be part of our future - have a read here.
Issue #201 published 16 Aug 2020
Recruiters have a lot of skills sp what career paths do they transfer into? Great to work with our buddies at Zinc on this post on what other career options might be available for us in case we want or need to explore. Especially good in providing examples of those recruiters who successfully made the transition
Issue #201 published 16 Aug 2020
Li Jin was the first to give a new category of work a name. Her ’passion economy’ blog series encapsulated the type of ‘micro-entrepreneurship’ which generates revenue from a community of fans and followers. It’s Youtuber-ing, but on different platforms, for different audiences. Have a read, here
Issue #201 published 16 Aug 2020
Outstanding speculation on the future of work from brainfooder Andrew Spence. Read this if you want to learn about new categories of worker - curators, data labourers and ‘slashies’ (spoiler alert: you probably already are one). Must read
Issue #200 published 9 Aug 2020
Fascinating mea culpa from a guy who ended up lying for money on the Internet. Review sites of all types have got to be subject to gaming of this sort - too cheap and too easy to buy someone off to give you a good rating. Anyone done this with LinkedIn endorsements? btw: feel free to endorse me, but only for LinkedIn endorsements….
Issue #197 published 19 Jul 2020
The Future of Time
Incredibly under viewed video (less than 500!) on the Future of Time, which is really about the future of what we do with time. Lots on the future of work here, including the end of synchronicity, which changes everything. 10 minutes of brainfood and - definitely worth your time.
Issue #195 published 5 Jul 2020
The role of online labour marketplaces is set to grow in the post Covid-19 world, as the marketplaces ‘verticalise’ (i.e produce better signal) and employers diversify workforce composition. Let’s get better at knowing the landscape. H/T brainfooder Pedro Oliveira for the share.
Issue #194 published 28 Jun 2020
Excellent high level view from Gartner. Especially significant: Expansion of the role of the employer in society, accelerating trend for alternative workforce, increase of remote working. Can HR / TA expand scope beyond the payroll? We had better…
Issue #194 published 28 Jun 2020
Great overview post which looks at the future of work through the lens of companies which are starting up (and getting funded) to service what that future looks like. Plenty of cool companies to review, useful categorisation of them too.
Issue #192 published 14 Jun 2020
Statement of Alliance
The topic of Internal Mobility came up again on last Friday’s Brainfood Live so timing is right to review LinkedIn’s ’Tour of Duty’ concept - basic at one level but no less fundamental for it. It is about understanding the lack of permanence in work. H/T to brainfooder Pedro Oliveira for the share
Issue #191 published 7 Jun 2020
Fascinating report on a job that thousands of people are now going to do doing. Journalist Rory Cellan-Jones gives it contact tracing a go and his findings are eye opening. Lot of transferrable skills from sourcing / recruiting here to the Covid economy it seems. H/T brainfooder Petar Vujosevic for the share.
Issue #190 published 31 May 2020
Always pay attention to what the CFO’s are thinking. No ‘rubber band’ bounce back to business as before and significant reconfiguration of the workforce to come. Must read folks.
Issue #186 published 3 May 2020
Having recently launched ‘HungBot’ (see above), I had the unfortunate task of doing some 'conversational design’ - I can tell you it’s very hard work. It might well be a job for the future though, so this explainer interview is well worth a read for us here. H/T to brainfooder Martyn Redstone for the share
Issue #186 published 3 May 2020
Synthesis from Josh Bersin is always worth a read. I don’t fully agree with his bold assessment that hyper sanitised manufacturers will be the model of the post Covid-19 working environment though. It’s going to be easier for most companies to shift what they can permanently to remote - and roboticise the rest. Have a read and let me know what you think.
Issue #186 published 3 May 2020
Inside the lives of the RV dwellers who are spending their golden years working in the e-tail behemoth’s warehouses. Not the sob story you may first think, but a necessary hedge we humans may have to make. 
Issue #58 published 23 Apr 2020
A historical dispute over who deserves what share in the increase value facilitated by machines may hold the lesson of the our times. We’re all going to be Luddites soon - we better know their history
Issue #36 published 23 Apr 2020
Great article here from the Open Democracy movement on how the internet created the gig economy and how it may lead to a new future of labour organisation
Issue #36 published 23 Apr 2020
Fascinating story on the mentor who coached millionaire Fortnite winners. Hugh Gilmour charged on £120 flat fee for this tutelage, indication of the immaturity of this market. With Fortnite’s black hole and subsequent relaunch last week, we can yet another surge of player interest, and perhaps more work for Hugh.
Issue #158 published 23 Apr 2020
Great read from Lin Jin on the ‘passion economy’ - where creators can build audience and tribe around a passion - and make a business from it. Tim Ferriss is probably the exemplar of the model where individuality is a feature, not a bug. Have a read here
Issue #158 published 23 Apr 2020
Eight Futures
White Paper from World Economic Forum and BCG. Came out in January this year, but I somehow missed it, and shouldn’t have, because it’s excellent brainfood. Polarised World is my bet for most likely scenario. What’s yours?
Issue #107 published 23 Apr 2020
Incredible thesis by Andrew Kortina on declining labour force participation by young men in the US. The bottom line? For many young men, there’s no point in working for marginal gains as money no longer increases your social status. More conversation on this topic on Hacker News here
Issue #107 published 23 Apr 2020
What used to make manufacturing so great? Interesting thinking from Nicolas Colin - who along with his partner Laetitia Vitaud - are rapidly becoming the power couple in thinking about the future of work. Rather than bring back manufacturing jobs, we need to understand why we place them in such high esteem now that they are gone. Brainfood for sure, so have read here
Issue #159 published 23 Apr 2020
Ageing population, rise of robots and the loss of jobs, will lead to ‘the Great Transformation’ says this report from Bain & Company. It’s way too long to read through properly, but worth browsing through for the charts and main argument; it’s going to get crazy
Issue #71 published 23 Apr 2020
1. Big Tech, 2. Precision 3. Exodus and 4. Empathy - these are the ‘big 4’ future scenarios of the future of work in 2035 according the RSA. We’ll get a a flavour from each I suspect, though my money is No1. Digestible summary here, and but do take time to download the full report here
Issue #129 published 23 Apr 2020
The world of work is changing is folks, and sometimes if we look to the edges of the economy, we might see a glimpse of what that future might look like. Fascinating portrait of ‘bug bounty hunters’ - independent, contract-free workers who look for errors in software, in order to claim prizes offered by the software owners.
Issue #174 published 23 Apr 2020
It probably makes a difference if your first connected device was mobile or a laptop, whether first interface was keyboard or touchscreen. It’s time to rehabilitate the generational stereoptypes folks - some evidence on this from our buddies at HackerRank and more, from VisualCapitalist, here.
Issue #138 published 23 Apr 2020
Gig working is on the rise, especially in high skilled work. An employer with contracted employees is looking less and less like a model for the future. Accessible research paper by MBO Partners - downloadable here
Issue #93 published 23 Apr 2020
Accessible 52 pager from Mercer on the future of work. Focus is on organisational competitive advantage. Useful doc to circulate internally if you’re battling intransigence from the top. Download it here
Issue #105 published 23 Apr 2020
Alternative workforce, ‘Superjobs’, talent access - it’s all here in this interactive web app from Deloitte Insights. Some great research and commentary to explore. If you prefer, you can download the PDF here
Issue #136 published 23 Apr 2020
The doomsayers ….were all right though. They only underestimated the social & economic response made by society in response tech driven unemployment. Perhaps this is what we will need to do again. Great graphic nevertheless!
Issue #76 published 23 Apr 2020
A coming apocalypse for banks who are largely still depend on mainframe based systems - the old COBOL guys are starting to hit retirement - and no one is replacing them. Fascinating study on what happens when you become dependent on tech no one else understands
Issue #29 published 23 Apr 2020
Trainers, Explainers and Sustainers says the Sloan Management Review, broad categories of the new jobs that humans will perform in a near future scenario dominated by artificial intelligence. 
Issue #59 published 23 Apr 2020
Great overview of some of the major trends that are going to impact the world of work. Optimistic notes, which is a welcome change of tone from the current consensus
Issue #24 published 23 Apr 2020
Keep Feeding The Profile
Opting out of traditional employment, leaves knowledge workers with far too many choices — and focusing on a career becomes harder the more opportunities we face. How do we overcome the hustle? Smart questions by a smart lady. H/T Anna Ott for writing this - a glimpse of the future default of work.
Issue #124 published 23 Apr 2020
A collection extraordinary interdisciplinary essays from some of the best thinkers of the future around. It’s a great field guide from the Royal Society, no less. You’d pay money for this book, so it’s must read / download - do it here
Issue #121 published 23 Apr 2020
100 Jobs of the Future
What will our future workforce look like? Great bit of brainfood coming out of Australia, beautifully presented in this outstanding interactive website. Take the quiz, browse the future jobs or just deep dive into the report. H/T brainfooder Christine Shaw for the share.
Issue #175 published 23 Apr 2020
1,000 True Fans? Try 100
Li Jin has become an important populariser of the concept of the ‘passion economy’. According to her theory, you only need 100 'true fans’ to be able to start a business based a) your passion and b) your ability to deliver value to others who share it. This is probably what Recruiting Brainfood is now, so have a read here on another possible avenue for the future of work
Issue #175 published 23 Apr 2020
Forecast: The cult of the coder will disappear as soon as we remove the keyboard as the primary source of input. OOP will become AR drag and drop, leading to the de-skilling of the entire industry. Devs are going hate this, but Dreamweaver 2.0 augurs the end!
Issue #25 published 23 Apr 2020
Easy to paint the corporations as the bad guys, but on-demand labour is a business logic that won’t go away. Legislation against is not going to help. 
Issue #25 published 23 Apr 2020
Economist Ronald Coase was one of the first to speculate why companies exist at all - when it seems to make more sense for us all to be independent freelancers. In the end it was because companies are able to aggregate demand, build persistent brand value and therefore reduce the cost of customer acquisition. That was the 1930’s though, and things might be about to change
Issue #156 published 23 Apr 2020
How To Become A Centaur
When we’re talking about the future of work, a ‘Centaur’ is a human being augmented by AI, rather than being displaced by it. Nicky Case makes the optimists case that this our likely future - a world of human workers supplemented, not dominated, by AI. It’s brilliant essay and a must read.
Issue #73 published 23 Apr 2020
“No government is prepared,” The Economist reports. And I suspect governments won’t have it in them to be prepared. We’re going to have to do this ourselves, people. 
Issue #23 published 23 Apr 2020
Tim O'Reilly has been talking about the the future of work. Here is is 97 page slide deck from his keynote on April 18, 2018. Useful to combine with some of his Youtube. H/T brainfooder John Sumser for the share. 
Issue #81 published 23 Apr 2020
Cities are going to pitch to host Amazons 2nd HQ. There’s 50,000 jobs up for grabs for the winning city - a transformatory number for a city of any size. It’s Amazon, getting on the right side of the people. Smart politics by Bezos, and perhaps the future for corporate / community / country relationships?
Issue #49 published 23 Apr 2020
Weird bit of speculative fiction from PwC of all companies - a report outlining 4 possible scenarios which might shape the world of work by 2030. Reads like Kim Stanley Robinson so I really liked this - give it a read if you’re into sci-fi….
Issue #120 published 23 Apr 2020
Smart bit of content marketing from LinkedIn - an archive of country-by-country guides on emerging jobs for 2020. Pulled from LinkedIn data so usual caveats on sample bias / usage adoption etc; nevertheless, some must read research
Issue #166 published 23 Apr 2020
Robot Macroeconomics
Advances in machine learning and mobile robotics mean that robots could do your job better than you. That’s led to some radical predictions of mass unemployment, much more leisure or a work free future. But labour saving innovations and the debates around them aren’t really anything new.  
Issue #52 published 23 Apr 2020
World Economic Forum join forces with BCG to compile this report on ‘job transition pathways’. At it’s core, is a taxonomy of related jobs that we might be ideally suited to transition to if our current work gets threatened by automation. 
Issue #69 published 23 Apr 2020
What does NASA think about the future of work? You can find out in this massive archive of blog posts, research & reports. Fascinating and welcome to see future focus apply to internal organisation. H/T ‘foodie Pedro Oliveira for the share
Issue #137 published 23 Apr 2020
Significant experiment on the future of work from Github - open source contributors can now get rewarded directly from their followers. This is internet points translating into real world cash folks. We should all take a look, even if you’re not in tech.
Issue #137 published 23 Apr 2020
The movement to teach everyone to code was a premature rush to gold. We’ve probably got half a generation already onto a career path which they never should have been on. 
Issue #28 published 23 Apr 2020
Swedish company Epicenter were in the news this week - first company to microchip their employees for efficiency gains. The inevitable future, or the mark of Cain? Maybe both, maybe neither. Futurist and humanist Gerd Leonhard provides insight into where we’re headed.
Issue #26 published 23 Apr 2020
Men Without Work
A long trend and an unfashionable crisis, hidden from view. Nothing good happens when large numbers of working age men drop out of economic activity. We’re beginning to see consequences. 
Issue #26 published 23 Apr 2020
Is this the future of performance management? At some point, we’re going to realise that human managers vary in their ability to improve the work of the team. Maybe behavioural science of small rewards / incremental progress can do it better
Issue #26 published 23 Apr 2020
This was my favourite thing on twitter this year - a bot that tweets side-by-side gifs of other bots out performing their human analogue. If ever you needed a drip feed of notifications that the future of work might not include us, this is the account to follow. 
Issue #63 published 23 Apr 2020
We Should Tax The Robots
Bill Gates bends his mind to the coming problem of tech unemployment with this shocking innovation idea - taxing the robots which replace the person. 
Issue #63 published 23 Apr 2020
The rise of the machine has been a theme in brainfood this year - it’s been a theme for everyone thinking about the world of work. This superb essay from David Dixon Jr, finds a way between the cynicism and the fear, using history as foundation for thinking about the inevitable future
Issue #63 published 23 Apr 2020
Remote Only
This may become the canonical document on remote work. Clear, precise and helpful to those who want to know more about and /or embrace a fully distributed working culture. If you care about changing patterns of work or hiring / managing remote workers more effectively, read it and bookmark it. 
Issue #89 published 23 Apr 2020
Significant move by LinkedIn into the freelancer-therefore-future-of-work space. With the largest database of professionals, data on relationships between those professionals, as well info on how those professionals perform….LinkedIn has the firepower to sweep everyone off the board. Somebody get using this and let me know how it well it works.
Issue #153 published 23 Apr 2020
Ronald Coase is the fella who first asked the question ‘why do firms actually exist?’. Answer then: because customer acquisition costs were too high for individuals. That answer is becoming increasingly invalidated in the era of hyper connectivity. One of the future thinkers here
Issue #102 published 23 Apr 2020
Future of Jobs 2018
Massive 147 page report from World Economic Forum on the Future of Jobs. Optimistic notes as 50+ million new jobs projected to be created by advances in technology, but with hundreds of millions more being disrupted, displaced or relocated, it’ll be a systemic break. You need to download this paper and read it.
Issue #102 published 23 Apr 2020
Non-artisanal food retail jobs is done. No one would pretend these are great jobs, but they were an alternative to unemployment or alt-revenue. Future is bright and bleak at the same time.
Issue #38 published 23 Apr 2020
Sorry folks, I’m with Deliveroo on this. We cannot legislate the future away. On-demand labour is a thing - at least until the robots take it over - so we better get on board with accelerating the trend. Nice read of Deliveroo’s pre-emptive tactics here, though the position of The Guardian as a critic is clear.
Issue #27 published 23 Apr 2020
When a post about the decline of the male breadwinner hits 300+ comments on a male dominated news service, you know you’ve hit a nerve. Comments from last week’s post on the decline of the male breadwinner
Issue #27 published 23 Apr 2020
Excellent slide deck from Upwork, exploring the hiring behaviours of 1000 of US hiring managers. There is a discernible shift from the default of full time, permanent, onsite. Competitive advantage will go to those companies who figure out this transition to the mixed workforce.  
Issue #75 published 23 Apr 2020
pix2code may be a company worth keeping an eye on. According to this white paper, they have the tech to generate functional code from a screenshot of a UI. If true, this transforms software prototyping and suggests that the future of coding - like any other form of human labour - belongs to the machine. Youtube vid here
Issue #51 published 23 Apr 2020
You heard it here first. DataOps Engineering is a thing. 
Issue #34 published 23 Apr 2020
Do Platforms Work?
Platform businesses have gobbled the hierarchical firm, and only by seizing the platform can workers avoid digital serfdom says George Zarkadakis. Work is political. It always has been.
Issue #99 published 23 Apr 2020
Minimal manning—and with it, the replacement of specialized workers with problem-solving generalists - is the main idea behind the US Navy personnel strategy. Outstanding essay from Atlantic, taking a deep dive into the skills vs experience debate. Have a read here
Issue #143 published 23 Apr 2020
Following from last week’s popular future modelling post, there’s more from Deloitte Insights: this time looking at projected job roles in government in 2025 and beyond. Free download of the paper here.
Issue #108 published 23 Apr 2020
Expertise maximises your reward in times of stability, but makes you vulnerable in times of change. In the era we’re heading towards, should we generalise or specialise? It’s an essential dilemma, for us and the people we recruit.
Issue #74 published 23 Apr 2020
Serving is Skilled Labor
How we value roles has nothing to do with the skill it takes to do it and everything to do with the power relationships between the people involved in the transaction. Perhaps we nothing we can do about this, other than ponder the ethics of desiring the ‘human touch’ when we ask for the service….
Issue #152 published 23 Apr 2020
Actually an interesting listicle. I know, I too was amazed. 

Issue #17 published 23 Apr 2020
Rarely do book reviews make it to On Hiring, but for this, I will make an exception. On Hiring subscriber Seb Marion covers Alec Ross’s tome of the future of industry, breaking it up in easily digestible cameo’s. Great introduction to a book we all should probably read. 
Issue #17 published 23 Apr 2020
Can titles of conference talks tell us something about workplace trends? Evan Sinar makes a persuasive case that it can in the stunning analysis of SIOP (Society of Industrial & Occupational Psychologists) conference talks over the past 10 years. So someone should really do something like this for HR/Recruiting events? 
Issue #87 published 23 Apr 2020
Instead of ‘teaching girls to code’ maybe we need to teach boys to care? Research suggests traditionally male occupations might be at greater risk of automation, and it is service work that we don’t want to automate which will be much more robust against tech unemployment. Doctors will be robots, nurses will stay human Important read
Issue #135 published 23 Apr 2020
Outstanding resource from OECD who have categorised their research findings into this massive searchable archive. It’s probably the single most important source of information on the future of work. You basically need to bookmark this
Issue #135 published 23 Apr 2020
Deloitte Insights produce some very decent brainfood. This accessible 40 pager suggests that a route out of a future of mass tech unemployment might come through the redefinition of what work actually is - not just the execution of tasks but of the finding & creating value and meaning. A bit ‘right on’, but it might just also be right. Download it here
Issue #110 published 23 Apr 2020
Josh Bersin is a great synthesiser of macro technological and economic trends and applying them to the world of work. His output on the Coronavirus Crisis has been excellent, ‘the Big Reset’ certainly counts amongst those. Have a read
Issue #181 published 23 Apr 2020
That Covid-19 is an accelerant to underlying trends already underway is a theory that is rapidly gaining consensus. Heather McGowan puts together an accessible overview here - its a cause for cautious optimism but also a call to action to rework the procedural debt we’ve allow to accrue.
Issue #181 published 23 Apr 2020
Fantastic slide deck from ARK Invest, covering some of the big ideas that are a little under the radar for the laity. Not recruiting specific, but all of these ideas have implications for us in the people business. Recommend you read.
Issue #68 published 23 Apr 2020
It didn’t take long before I gave up on professionalism and slipped into oversharing the messier parts of life that I usually don’t put on display for coworkers.
Ellen Freemen on with a real life experiment on blurring the boundaries of work / play. Fascinating experiment - read it here.
Issue #104 published 23 Apr 2020
Viral Flows
Outstanding essay by John Hagel on the efficiency vs resiliency, with lessons for us on how we build our future businesses and careers. Diversifying ‘supply chain’ is the key concept, and transplants directly on how we must view employment and income streams. Have a read
Issue #184 published 23 Apr 2020
Key points: work gets unbundled / re-bundled, shift from hierarchy to networked teams, organisational boundaries become fuzzy with increase in flexible, non-employees providing essential resource. Great brainfood from McKinsey. Summary here, full report here
Issue #86 published 23 Apr 2020
A very interesting report from McKinsey&Co, taking a view of the future of work with a gendered lens. The future might favour women overall, though with gaps to fill in STEM and leadership roles. Download the report here. H/T to brainfooder Oana Iordachescu for the share.
Issue #119 published 23 Apr 2020
The Future of Work
There are a lot of HR / Recruiting folks in the blogosphere, but few have a really great ‘voice’. Laurie Ruettiman is one of them. It’s great to see her back on the HR scene, talking now about something we all need to care about - the future of work. 
Issue #60 published 23 Apr 2020
The End of Loyalty?
Laetitia Vitaud is on a one person mission to rehabilitate the image of the ‘futurologist’. She is one of the brainfood folks to follow in 2019 and it’s mainly for posts like this. Deep thinking, accessible writing, great reading on the future of work.
Issue #133 published 23 Apr 2020
Brilliant summary by brainfooder Marija Gavrilov of the International Labour Office research paper on how platform business’s design choices impact gig workers well being. Read Marija’s summary here and the full report from ILO downloadable here
Issue #90 published 23 Apr 2020
What happens when you become an ‘anti-salesman’? Great post by Theodore Bendixson, who is struggling to balance professional detachment with the need to make a living as a contractor. 
Issue #56 published 23 Apr 2020
China will probably be the first major nation to have to confront the challenge of mass tech unemployment. What to do with the economically unviable? Probably nothing good. 
Issue #22 published 23 Apr 2020
Decline of the Dad Job
Socio-political implications of these long term trends are now bearing bitter fruit. Outstanding analysis from an blog that needs to be more widely read. 
Issue #22 published 23 Apr 2020
Produce or perish is the mantra for the highly skilled, indie consultant market. Familiar to a lot of readers on the brainfood who are on, or plan to be on, this journey. Good luck to you all and please do, have a read.
Issue #91 published 23 Apr 2020
Strangely apolitical post here, which assumes the inexorable continuation of globalising trends. Will this survive the return of big man politics? Not sure I’m onboard with these predictions but have a read, make up your own mind. 
Issue #19 published 23 Apr 2020
I must admit skepticism went into overdrive when I first read the premise - but then I thought - maybe this guy has got it right. Your job really is usually done after 2 years. Maybe we should recognise this formally before we accept it. An interesting concept that needs to go places. 
Issue #19 published 23 Apr 2020
More Robots, Fewer Jobs
Some interesting speculations here. Bottom line: tech unemployment is going to be the norm. 
Issue #47 published 23 Apr 2020
Is the end of the company nigh? Flash organisations are on-demand teams assembled for single purpose then disbanded when no longer needed. This, of course, requires gig workers, something governments need to understand, not legislate against 
Issue #41 published 23 Apr 2020
Persuasive analysis from Scott Santerns, on a vision of the future which I think will become consensus. Our lack of answers to the challenge of tech unemployment will also become consensus. Perhaps the machines what we should do when there is actually no need to do it.  
Issue #39 published 23 Apr 2020
Deloitte Insights are consistently coming up with outstanding research driven content on the future of work and organisations. The research website is here, download full report here - it’s an outstanding resource.

Issue #88 published 23 Apr 2020
Jane Watson has a really interesting perspective on the rise of ‘shadow work’ - the shift of labour from businesses to consumers, via automation. This is an excellent blog from an author worth paying attention to.
Issue #101 published 23 Apr 2020
Fascinating perspective from Google’s Director of UX Sara Ortloff Khory on the design of Google Hire, Google for Jobs and Google Talent Solutions. Main gist: designing tools for work where change is constant. Have a read
Issue #101 published 23 Apr 2020
Outstanding essay on key trends impacting the how we go about our work; some new terms for you to get a handle on:‘centaur workers’, the new precariat and the deliberate return of human connections where once they were disintermediated. Must read folks. 
Issue #55 published 23 Apr 2020
Where tech workers go, the rest of us are sure to follow. Fans / Followers of GitHub repo’s can now monetarily reward their heroes - now rolled out to 30+ countries. This is the ’passion economy’ folks, and for the highly skilled & highly networked, it’s going to be a way out of the market economy
Issue #161 published 23 Apr 2020
Santiago Lopez has made history last week by becoming the first white-hat hacker to earn $1 million in bug bounties. Kudos to Santiago, who’s now a rich young man, and who also might just be providing an example of a new relationship we might be able to have with work. Have a read here
Issue #126 published 23 Apr 2020
Important research from Mercer on global talent trends. Broad strokes are clear: employees want to be less like employees and more like freelancers, but with job security and benefits. Can employers adapt? If we can’t then employment might become untenable. Must read folks.
Issue #157 published 23 Apr 2020
Upwork’s annual report on the state of freelancing in the US. Main takeaway? Industry professionals at the top of their game choosing the freelancing working pattern and would refuse a permanent job offer regardless of comp. Website here, slide deck here, one pager here
Issue #157 published 23 Apr 2020
Nice thought experiment from Deloitte Insights, profiling 5 new jobs of the near future (2025), in job description style. Particularly like the ‘time-over-tasks’ breakdown, though a bar rather than a shape ;-). Download the accessible report here
Issue #106 published 23 Apr 2020
‘Dawn’ is a cafe where the robot servers are operated by housebound workers at home. Fascinating application of remote technology to activate the socially isolated. Japan always seems to have a way of quirkily innovating like this - love to know if anyone has any theories as to why. Answers on a wasabi kit kat.
Issue #117 published 23 Apr 2020
‘Threading’ - a style of bullet point by tweet - has been one of best things to happen in twitter in recent times. Threader app is perhaps the best client for discovering great threads. I didn’t realise the two founders were a couple who made it whilst they were digital nomads. Future of work - at least digital work - might be here.
Issue #117 published 23 Apr 2020
FairTube Campaign
A new category of work is emerging folks - creator / curators who work in the ’passion economy’. Youtube has led the way with this, with thousands of full time Youtubers earning living doing their thing; its now fascinating to observe them organise against the platform - a very modern iteration of what used to be a shop floor worker vs factory owner. Check out the manifesto of the ‘FairTube’ campaign here
Issue #160 published 23 Apr 2020
In case you didn’t read the World Economic Forum’s Future of Jobs report 2018 from last week’s brainfood (full report here), WEF have provided bite sized this summary.
Issue #103 published 23 Apr 2020
For a look at the future of work, sometimes it’s useful to look at the history of work. Companies are the default form of organisation of skilled labour is being challenged, from the ground up, typically by co-ops of skilled artisans. 5 cases studies from London to Berlin in this beautifully arrange piece by NYT
Issue #134 published 23 Apr 2020
Quillette is pretty much a right wing anti-feminist Jordan Peterson loving publication …but….they’ve got a good piece here. The narrative on gig working needs greater nuance, and especially missing are the voices of those who actually do the work. Have a read here, and also make sure to check out the HN thread for further discussion
Issue #146 published 23 Apr 2020
Work is being ‘unbundled’ or disaggregated into tasks and the company is making less sense than ever as a unit of organising that work says Laetitia Vitaud. Concise and accessible essay on the future of work. 
Issue #85 published 23 Apr 2020
When labor markets tighten, wages are expected to rise. But in recent years, as unemployment has fallen below 5 percent in the United States, wages have not been increasing as fast as in the past. Short but informative post from the New York Times. 
Issue #53 published 23 Apr 2020
Bring On The BodyNET
“Soft tech” - stretchable sensors, circuits and batteries are about to change our relationships with electronics and each other. Creepy cool from Nature. 
Issue #53 published 23 Apr 2020
‘Ruby on Wheels’ is a Jakob Class’s blog about a developer who is practising true digital nomadism - living & coding out of a van. Here’s his take on his first 150 days. Solution to the housing crisis, right here?
Issue #53 published 23 Apr 2020
Some superb dystopia from the FT here, with a post packed full of new language we need to describe the future of work “human intelligence tasks” performed by the “precariat” which is kind of an “artificial artificial intelligence”. This is a thought provoker and a great read. H/T brainfooder David Green for the share. 
Issue #53 published 23 Apr 2020
The latest episode in the evolving story of conflict between platform vs worker. It’s a battle which is going to dominate any future world of work. Creators on Youtube have created a union and are self organising against the giant platform, mirroring what developers on the app store tried to do a year ago. Platforms will have to come to an arrangement if the creator workforce can organise and stay disciplined. This is what politicised labour looks like for the 21st century.
Issue #147 published 23 Apr 2020
More on ‘soft’ or non-cognitive skills. The future of work depends on training ourselves to be as least like machines are possible. An overdue corrective to a STEM train currently in overdrive
Issue #20 published 23 Apr 2020
Teaching your kids of code? We’re preparing them for a future that might not exist. Mark Cuban makes the case for the liberal arts, much needed counterpoint to current consensus towards STEM
Issue #20 published 23 Apr 2020
Seth Godin is famous for writing micro blogs. Turns out, he’s pretty useful at the longer form also. This is his take on the skills we need to reposition in order to stay relevant in an AI dominated world. 
Issue #20 published 23 Apr 2020
A collection of examples of workforce automation. We’ve seen some of these examples before but rarely collected together in one place. Good overview on what we have to know about tech unemployment
Issue #20 published 23 Apr 2020
Wanted: Parent?
Amazing job ad, reposted on twitter by Kimberley Harrington, and brought to my attention by brainfooder Matt Buckland. Two minds about this - is it ok to delegate parenthood? The rich have always done it, and even those that are not rich do elements of it if we can. Have a read, maybe a laugh and a think
Issue #172 published 23 Apr 2020
Docu-series from Wired dedicated to analysing the impact intelligent automation on various industries. It’s short, superbly produced and accessible web series . Must watch for anyone interested in automation and the future of work
Issue #154 published 23 Apr 2020
100 Jobs Of The Future
Who would have thought that HR would be good at Sci-fi? As a fan of both genres I was always going to sympathetic to this effort from Deakin University. Fascinating speculation for what may coming round the corner. Explore the website here and download the pdf here. H/T to brainfooder Christine Shaw for the share
Issue #149 published 23 Apr 2020
The drive to STEM is well meaning but perhaps too late as technology might accelerate beyond our ability to contribute it. It is perhaps wiser to revalue the traits what we have historically devalued, and focus on the work machines cannot do. 
Issue #40 published 23 Apr 2020
Along with AI, BlockChain is going to be most significant technological innovation shaping the near future world of work. As folks in the people business, we need to understand it better - this is an accessible a guide as any on how it works. 
Issue #40 published 23 Apr 2020
Rise of the Robolawyers
No reason why the law cannot be entirely automated. As George Bernard Shaw once said, the professions are a conspiracy against the laity. 
Issue #32 published 23 Apr 2020
Our desire to decouple from the dirty business of money exchange is unabated. Accommodation in exchange of labour is almost the oldest deal in the book. 
Issue #50 published 23 Apr 2020
HR & Recruitment Trends post, with me in it. That’s not the reason to read it though, as it also has much better observations from smarter people like William Tincup, Jim Stroud, Katrina Collier and many others. Have a look here, feel free to heckle.
Issue #173 published 23 Apr 2020
Interesting thought experiment by Marija Gavrilov on what the automation of care will do to how we value the human touch. Will it human empathy become a premium value or will it be eliminated as robots do it better? Accessible read on the future of work.
Issue #140 published 23 Apr 2020
A macabre future surely beckons for many of us who might make a living through selling parts of ourselves to the market. This gent - as a full time sperm donor - might be a pioneer of a new type future of work. NB: of course it will be the poor that will sell to the rich.
Issue #140 published 23 Apr 2020
It was tech that led with the social web, the agile way of working and open source commits. Is it leading again with the idea of worker-owned businesses? Here’s an operating document to get you started if you want to give it a crack.
Issue #35 published 23 Apr 2020
Crafting A Life
White-collar workers are fleeing their desks to become brewers, bakers and pickle-makers. Can the artisanal economy be the solution to AI and workforce automation? Fascinating article on the future of work, which may end up looking a lot like the history of work. 
Issue #70 published 23 Apr 2020
Tl;dr of this is social skills + mathematics. Learning to deal with people and numbers. We probably all need a refresher on this
Issue #31 published 23 Apr 2020
Out of sight, out of mind. We know this is true, but perhaps ‘career progression’ is a concept that has had its day. 
Issue #31 published 23 Apr 2020
Yuval Noah Harari might be the chronicler of our age. If you haven’t read his book ‘Sapiens’, you should. Here’s a short essay on the search for meaning when the work has gone. 
Issue #31 published 23 Apr 2020