So Long to the Linear Era of Work…

So Long to the Linear Era of Work…

The fourth industrial revolution isn’t just near – it’s here.

As technology changes, machines have replaced some jobs that used to be completed by people. At the same time, new jobs are emerging that weren’t as important a few years ago.

A traditional, linear career trajectory is no longer a reality. The world of work has changed – and the steps to take to enter the workforce have altered also. FYA’s New Work Order has explored the key drivers behind the changes (globalisation, automation and collaboration), and the implications of the changing nature of work regarding what skills employers are now looking for.

Among the key things employers want are transferable enterprise skills – things like project management, communication and financial literacy.

These skills – once referred to as ‘soft skills’ are now must haves. But despite the demand, young Australians aren’t adequately equipped with the skills.

By investing in young people through enterprise education we will equip and inspire them for a radically different future of work, helping them build the confidence, skills and mindset to not only seek jobs but create them.

Internationally there are lots of great examples of enterprise education in action. For example in Japan they have redesigned their curriculum to promote integrated learning. It’s reduced content load by around 30% and increased time for integrated learning so students can engage in cross-curricular problem-solving projects.

FYA’s $20 Boss program is another example of how this works in practice. Through the program students are given a $20 loan to start their own business. They’re taught how to develop a business plan and put their ideas into action.

This year over 10,000 students across 237 schools across Australia are registered with the program – another 10,000 young entrepreneurs in the making. 

What this program demonstrates is that by rethinking education and schools to become incubators for learning and experimentation, we will accelerate their capacity to drive the economy forward once they finish training or studies. Evaluation reports from the 2015 program showed strong outcomes for those involved, including:

  • 93% of students learnt they could start their own enterprise;
  • 92% of students said they felt they learnt how to make a profit;
  • 98% of teachers said students developed confidence; and
  • 96% of teachers said students developed business literacy skills.

Just this week we are celebrating some of the best and brightest ideas that have come from $20 Boss students, with the winners of the 2016 Awards announced in Melbourne earlier this week.

This year’s awards demonstrate the incredible outcomes achieved when students are given the opportunity to flex their entrepreneurial muscle, build their enterprise skills and drive sustainable social change. View the full list of incredible state and national winners here.

Despite the leg up these capabilities provide, in a future where young people are predicated to have 17 job changes across 5 careers, transferable enterprise skills alone won’t be enough. Further it won’t help them to understand what careers they should pursue, or what jobs will be around in the next 10-15 years as automation starts to shift career prospects.

So what other skills will they need to navigate the new work order? What careers will still need a supply of future workers? And what skills will those people need to be able to easily move between jobs as old jobs shift and new ones emerge?  

Accurate information about the types of jobs will be essential to building the portfolio of portable skills and capabilities and craft multiple careers.  

To tackle this challenge, FYA has explored where the future jobs will exist and the skills required with a new report that reveals as many opportunities as it does risks in the uncertain future.

This next report in the New Work Order series will be released this week – we’re a bit excited about what this will mean for changing the way we think about and approach our working lives. You can refresh on the previous reports here and stay tuned in to FYA to explore the future of work further next week. 

And while you’re waiting, get a taste for what kind of questions the report will explore, with a look at the new-age career trajectory already taking hold of some young people’s careers with this video.

Jan Owen 



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