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‘Future of Work’ report finds emerging trends in workforces

CCIQ’s Future of Work Report, released today, provides critical insight into trends expected to influence Queensland businesses long-term.

CCIQ CEO Heidi Cooper said the future of work was an evolving and critical issue for all businesses, both now and into the future.

“Now is the time for businesses to be preparing their workforces, workplaces and their work lives to ensure they’re best placed to future proof their business and capitalise on these opportunities,” Ms Cooper said.

Key ‘Future of Work’ Report Findings: 

  • 70% of businesses said a need for stronger digital skills among their workforce would have a moderate to critical impact on the future of their business.
  • Mental health and wellbeing support is the top concern in future work life for Queensland businesses, expected to have moderate to critical impacts on 70% of businesses surveyed. 37% of businesses expected major to critical impacts.
  • 61% of Queensland businesses reported digital engagement and e-commerce would have moderate to critical impacts on the future of their business. 13% indicated this would have critical impacts for their workplace in the next five years.

CCIQ surveyed more than 500 businesses across the state and led focus groups to gain critical insight into emerging trends in Queensland’s future of work.

The report found Queensland businesses were considering strategies to adapt to shifts to future business operations, with a keen focus on digitisation and skills to respond to new technologies and trends, developing consumer and market demand and future opportunities.


70% of businesses said a need for stronger digital skills among their workforces was likely to impact their businesses. More than half expect they’ll need to develop e-commerce strategies to meet consumer and market demand long-term while adapting to emerging trends in the way they engage with customers.

“Learning at work will need to be a top priority for Australian employees and employers in the future,” Ms Cooper said.

“As future skills continue to evolve, future workforce planning must focus on skills and tasks required, instead of on jobs. It means lifelong reskilling and retraining will be required for all employees in the future and close to 70% of businesses told us it would have moderate to critical impacts on their future of work.

“While digital skills needs are highly desirable, the skills of the future will also focus on human interactions such as communication, customer service and personal skills.

“To further enable the transition of skills for the current to future workforce, it is important for businesses and government to work together to design and ensure retraining and upskilling opportunities are fit-for-purpose and widely available for all.

“Businesses and industry leaders expect future skills to look significantly different, and it’s critical training be widely available and accessible for all businesses to bridge the rapidly increasing demand for new skills.”

The most significant impact to workplace trends among Queensland businesses in the next five years is high speed internet accessibility. Three-quarters of businesses say difficulties in accessing high-speed internet is impacting their workplace and more than one in three of those were experiencing critical impacts.

The report found businesses and industry leaders indicate businesses want to support their employees to find purpose and meaning in work as well as support employees mental health and wellbeing. More than half of businesses indicated a need for positive mental health and wellbeing among their staff would have a significant impact on the future of work life.


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