Traits of Tomorrow’s Employees

Tammy Cohen, PHR, SHRM-CP
June 29 2017
The conversations surrounding the future of corporate America all seem to gravitate around one main theme: change. The digital age has catapulted multiple industries into paths that require faster technology, adaptable employees, and an entire paradigm shift concerning valuable skillsets. Automation and rapid-fire industrialization eliminates careers left and right as a fresh wave of job opportunities crest on the horizon. What characteristics define the employee of tomorrow and the future beyond?

Soft skills over hard skills

Managers need to rework their hiring strategy to emphasize the importance of soft skills over hard skills. Experience is not the trump card it used to be. Now the ability to execute job tasks is more important than how long they have worked. For example, many managers value adaptability over experience with a particular software. Adaptable employees can learn a new software, integrate the procedure that managers prefer, and settle into the pre-existing rhythm of the department with little fuss. More experienced but less adaptable workers may have trouble with new procedures and department rhythms. 


Expansive work history

Gone is the resume where the experience portion always follows a vertical progression in one industry. Tomorrow’s employees are expected to work an average of 10 to 15 jobs over their lifetime as reported by the Bureau for Labor Statistics, a majority of which could end up in a variety of industries and fields.  Upward movement is no longer the only way to succeed in the corporate world. Leaders from all industries also rely on their employee retention rates as a standard of success. Yet, an article by Lindsay Pollack made the case the retention no longer stands as a meaningful statistic or goal for most companies.


Strong social awareness

Corporate culture acquired a taste for social justice long ago due to the benefits it provides their communities and their image. The next step will be implementing social awareness down to the individual workers by prioritizing volunteer work and donations in employment benefits packages. 30% of some of the youngest individuals entering the workforce today have said they would take a 10-20% pay cut to work for a mission they care about or a company that supports causes in need.

Transparency over closed doors

Tomorrow’s employees are surrounded by technology that makes knowledge more accessible both in and out of the workplace. Openness with knowledge and communication channels will be expected, encouraged, and sometimes demanded by the needs of certain departments in your organization.

Business operation models of the future enforce this openness and direct link of communication as well, such as SCRUM tactics and Agile Methodology.

Common software updates

The technology that drives the open communication mentioned before will most likely change and update much more regularly than the employees that use them. The messaging forum within the office could switch to mobile phone apps and website chat windows, the procedures involving the open communication will evolve, and this in turn will force the communication itself to evolve between employees and superior officers. Tomorrow’s employees will either expect this or catch up when it inevitably happens within their team. Those with the individual skills that run on the commotion instead of stumble will rise above the others.

With innovation becoming a common occurrence, future employees will have to face a new standard of skills, experience, and expectations. While the titles and responsibilities evolve, the workers might stay the same. There will soon be five different generations operating within the office, the largest time span to be represented ever. Maneuvering your personnel to optimum proficiency might result in the creation of new jobs and the dissolution of others. Tomorrow’s employees face a new environment to excel within or fall behind.

About Tammy Cohen

Tammy Cohen, an industry pioneer and expert in identity and employment screening, founded InfoMart 30 years ago. Deemed the “Queen of Screen,” she’s been a force behind industry-leading innovations. She was most recently the first-to-market with a fully compliant sanctions search, as well as a suite of identity services that modernizes talent onboarding. Tammy revolutionized the screening industry when she stepped into the field, developing the first client-facing application and a due diligence criminal search that has since become standard for all background screening companies. Cohen has received national awards and honors for her business and civic involvement, including Atlanta Business Chronicle’s Top 25 Women-Owned Firms in Atlanta, Enterprising Women Magazine’s Enterprising Women of the Year award, the YWCA of Northwest Georgia’s Kathryn Woods Racial Justice Award, and a commendation in the 152nd Congressional Record.

About InfoMart

InfoMart has been revolutionizing the global background and identity screening industry for 30 years, providing businesses the information they need to make informed hiring decisions. They develop innovative technology that modernizes talent onboarding, including a first-to-market biometric identity authentication application and a verified sanctions search. The WBENC-certified company is a founding member of the Professional Background Screening Association, and they have achieved PBSA accreditation in recognition of their consistent business practices and commitment to compliance with the FCRA. The company is dedicated to customer service, speed, and accuracy, and it has been recognized for its success, workplace culture, and corporate citizenship with over 45 industry awards. To Get the Whole Story on InfoMart, please visit, follow @InfoMartUSA, or call (770) 984-2727.

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