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In 2021 and Beyond, Agility Will be 'Table Stakes'

Responding well to external challenges will become a business necessity

In 2020, employers worldwide embraced a rapid influx of innovative technologies to adapt to the challenges of a newly remote work environment. Even more remarkably, this transformation happened almost overnight. The implications on the 2021 workforce will be lasting; the ability to be agile will become table stakes for employers in navigating forward and driving growth amid a changing business landscape. 

The global health event made a significant impact on the dynamics of work and business operations. Many businesses had to close for safety reasons, or drastically limit customer capacity, driving them to reimagine how work gets done. The ongoing challenges of 2020 — from the global health event and beyond — will shape the future of the workplace indefinitely. For example, we are continuing to see the trend of personalization across the employee and employer experience and this trend continues to evolve into 2021.

Despite the trials of 2020, workers are primed to look on the bright side. A recent ADP Research Institute study found that worker confidence has declined less than one might expect: 84 percent of workers said they're still optimistic about the next five years in the workplace (although that's down from 86 percent pre-COVID). Seventy-five percent said they're hopeful about the year ahead.

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