The new www: Work, Workplace, Workforce
Mr Sreeram Iyer, who leads ANZ’s Corporate and Institutional Business globally, shared guiding principles on the future of work, along with its influence and impact on digital transformations.
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many businesses to adapt to new ways of working almost overnight. This has led to more businesses operating remotely, on different schedules, and even with changes in staffing. At the heart of these changes is the increasing importance of digital technologies and the ways they integrate with and enhance our work.
To shed more light on how we can navigate the future of work through digital transformation, Mr Sreeram Iyer shared his insights – particularly from a banking perspective – in a webinar organised by the Centre for International Trade and Business in Asia (CITBA) at James Cook University (JCU), moderated by Associate Professor Jacob Wood, Co-founder and Director of CITBA. Mr Iyer is the Chief Operating Officer, Institutional, ANZ Bank, as well as a member of JCU in Singapore’s advisory board.
In the webinar, Mr Iyer pointed out that digital transformation for companies in fact has very little to do with technology, and it has much more to do with the people and the company’s overall business strategy. It is not enough to simply build cutting-edge, technological features into a company – it is the whole of the strategy that truly matters.
In the wake of the pandemic, many companies were compelled to adapt and adopt digital transformation and discover digital solutions, in order to better serve customers amid unprecedented circumstances. For example, COVID-19 spurred a greater shift towards digital banking and away from cash and brick and mortar concepts – resulting in a sharp decrease in over-the-counter transactions over a short span of time, a decrease in ATM withdrawals in terms of dollar value, and more widespread use of digital channels and mobile apps.
Mr Iyer speculates that the future of work would involve a mix of the in-person-focused pre-pandemic days and the more flexible, remote-working environment during the pandemic – resulting in a people-first culture, comprising of a blend of in-person and remote work, that is more self-driven and purpose-led while being more open to adaptability and experimentation.
Furthermore, there is, and will be, a greater emphasis on mental health. Leaders have an obligation to allow employees to talk openly about what is on their mind, and be accountable for making progress on mental health. At the same time, compassion and empathy are no longer seen as extra, “nice-to-have” qualities. Putting people first and leveraging the right human skills in conjunction with technology is essential to business success.
As we see a growing need for digital educators, data scientists and social media professionals, in order to better understand information and customers in an online and digital-focused setting, it would seem that the future of work and the future of jobs are bright indeed.
Find out more about the Centre for International Trade and Business in Asia (CITBA).
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