Perkbox, Europe’s fastest growing employee experience platform, predicts internal communications and workplace flexibility will reign supreme in the 2020 workplace. The convergence of the startup and corporate company cultures will lead to the emergence of ‘employee first’ culture when it comes to EX, while CSR initiatives will increase with the help of digitalisation.

In the not so distant past, flexible working was seen as a perk provided only by certain businesses and in many instances only in isolated occasions. Today, in contrast, flexible working is the make or break factor for many employees. This has led from the smallest startup to the largest corporate, like Barclays, Cisco and Vodafone offering flexible working. Some, such as Simply Business have gone as far as starting to offer 4-day weeks. Expect many many more of this in 2020.

One of the challenges technology has brought to the modern world is communication overload. Gone are the days where we only communicated by email. Tools such as Zoom, Notion and Slack are becoming an everyday fixture in the modern workplace. This in turn, has led to a rise in communication specialists as organisations try navigating new complexities such as lower productivity, increasing stress levels and more confusion (where the intention was clarity), associated with these initiatives.

As we head into 2020, the startup and corporate culture clash will become a thing of the past, particularly when it comes to EX. We are already seeing large corporations moving closer to that startup feel by offering cooler, more inspirational workplaces – a huge change compared to the traditional office environment of the past. On the flip side, many startups are moving rapidly into the scaleup territory, with thousands of customers and hundreds of employees, and with this, they too, are seeing a new level of formality required across communication and administrative systems. Expect to see these two traditionally conflicting cultures converge and the emergence of an ‘employee first’ culture, combining elements of both, in 2020.

Finally, CSR policies will also come into sharp focus next year as employers become under increasing pressure to provide initiatives for a socially-conscious generation, while partners and clients also start to pose questions about CSR. Currently, 63% of Brits don’t get any time off for volunteering illustrating there’s clearly work to be done. With this, addressing climate change and helping the local community come top of the pile, and online platforms such as Beam, the world’s first crowdfunding network for homeless, will make it easier than ever to support them.

Louise Jones, People Advisor at Perkbox, comments:

“Often in the midst of day to day business and targets we forget to pause and reflect as employers on what our goals are to improve the employee experience of our company. Let these predictions be a timely reminder to put employee voice at the forefront as we enter the new year”.