The Changing Future of Work in a Post-Pandemic World

open hand holding a crystal ball with the sunset in the backgroundThe McKinsey Global Institute has released a comprehensive report on the future of work in a post-COVID-19 world. The report makes it clear that the pandemic will have seismic changes on the world of work and employers must adapt with the times to be able to recruit and retain the best possible employees. Counties spend the vast majority of their operating budgets on personnel costs, so this is every bit as true for county governments as private sector business. Additionally, county governments must understand how the future of work is changing in order to adapt their economic development efforts and build a strong local economy.

McKinsey offers both an Executive Summary and a full report (152 pages). A free account is required to download the documents, but many of the key insights on the lasting impact of the pandemic on labor demand, the mix of occupations, and the workforce skills required are summarized on the report’s landing page.

Jobs with the highest physical proximity are likely to be most disrupted

Remote work and virtual meetings are likely to continue, albeit less intensely than at the pandemic’s peak

COVID-19 may propel faster adoption of automation and AI, especially in work arenas with high physical proximity

The mix of occupations may shift, with little job growth in low-wage occupations

As many as 25 percent more workers may need to switch occupations than before the pandemic

Companies and policymakers can help facilitate workforce transitions

Understanding how COVID-19 has permanently changed the world is a key factor for future success. At the upcoming 2021 MACo summer conference, an expert panel will discuss these topics, with one presenter focusing specifically on the future of work.

The “Are Some Pandemic Quick Fixes Here to Stay? A Longer-Term Look at Short-Term Solutions” session will be held Thursday, August 19, 2021 from 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm.

The MACo Summer Conference will be held August 18-21 at the Roland Powell Convention Center in Ocean City, Maryland. This year’s theme is “Resilient. Responsive…Ready.”

Learn more about MACo’s Summer Conference: