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Work trends for 2024

In the past couple of years the way of working has changed greatly to fit the employee’s life, so what are some trends to look out for in 2024? Shannon Karaka of Deel tells us all.

In the new year, workplaces all over the country are focusing on creating both a positive and productive workplace, that weaves in the hybrid model most people are working in.

Shannon Karaka, Deel’s Country Leader for New Zealand and Australia says that heading into 2024 there are seven trends in particular to look out for as an employer and employee.

Airplane Mode

Just like when you switch on Airplane Mode when on a flight, in work terms, this is like a “do not disturb”.

More and more people will begin to unplug from work for a bit and let the emails and Slack notifications come through without doing anything immediately.

Airplane Mode is expected to quickly become standard practice within any workplace as it encourages ‘deep focus’ and productivity.

So, if you don’t get an immediate response to a Slack message, don’t fret, they’re probably in Airplane Mode trying to bang out that task, brainstorm or maybe just a little break from it all.

“Skills-First” Approach

Traditionally, for any full-time corporate job, a university degree is expected, but the days of needing that expensive piece of paper obtained after three years might be coming to an end.

Karaka says that many employers all over the world as putting skills first over education when it comes to hiring people.

So, if you don’t have that three-year degree, if you have the right skills suitable for the job description, you might just beat the competition and get it.

Rage Applying

We’ve all been guilty of rage applying when you didn’t get that promotion, or the boss is overbearing, or just generally feeling mistreated; it’s a reactionary tactic everyone has done.

When feeling unhappy about the job, rage applying can be seen as an emotional release and a quick look to see if better options exist.

“Applying for a new job is always best done when you’re in a calm and constructive state of mind,” says Karaka.

“While it can be tempting, the best job applications come from a proactive wish to advance, rather than a reactive spur of the moment. Otherwise you might end up wasting your own and everyone else’s time.”

Read more: Six current workplace trends

End of the five-day office week

Deel is predicting the four-day work week era is fast approaching.

Having been a topic of discussion for years now, we’re starting to see the four-day work week now coming into fruition.

Though we are starting to see a push for workers to come back into the office, consistent data is showing that the required time off (RTO) policies need to be revised.

“I definitely think the death of the five-day office week is beneficial for everyone. Work isn’t a place that you go to, it’s something that you do, and for some types of jobs, the office isn’t necessarily the best location,” says Karaka.

Shannon Karaka.

“If you’re better at focusing when you’re at home – why not work from home on the days when you’ve got a lot of focused work to do? Or if you’ve got a day of back-to-back online meetings, why would you spend time commuting to sit alone in a meeting room in the office? That time and energy can be put to better use.”


2024 is the year of the “ambitious corporate dynamos” of women who began their careers as early as the 1980s and have since broken the glass ceiling.

These women are predicted to be between 45 and 65 years old, have older kids and have high incomes and are the definition of the new norm.

Karaka says that this trend is here to stay, with these women proving to be the most competent and empathetic corporate leaders.

“Long term we certainly hope that The Queenagers are here to stay; long gone are the days when promotions automatically went to male office workers,” he adds.

Social Side-Gigging

Now more than ever, everyone has an entrepreneurial side to them, whether it means Uber driving on the side or working on their business from 5pm to 9pm.

An MYOB survey done earlier in 2023 revealed that eight in 10 Kiwis have a business idea and working on the side is helping fund that venture.

But there is also a drive from a lot of people to be removed from financial stress and that includes picking up another job.

Deel revealed that food service and bartending jobs are common choices for employees who work remotely and lack social interaction and see these weekend jobs as a creative outlet.

Unfiltered Zooming

As the years go by and authenticity becomes more and more important, especially for Gen Z, the digital backgrounds of video calls on Zoom are being ditched.

“Gen Z is certainly giving us Millennials a lot of grief for our overly filtered and perfected social media accounts and virtual backgrounds,” says Karaka.

With the idea of filtered and blurred backgrounds now going in the dump, 2024 is expected to see more authentic home office backgrounds.

Gen Z are ready to embrace their environments, whether it is tidy or a bit of a mess.

Despite all the work trends that is expected in 2024, Karaka says that the most important element to any workplace is communication.

With communication employees can listen, practice empathy, and understand different perspectives and emotions, which is vital in fostering a happy and productive workplace.

By fostering a safe space, employees are more likely to be honest, productive, and also reduces burnout that may come from mental health issues that arise in a workplace.

Bernadette is a content writer across SCG Business titles. To get in touch with her, email [email protected]

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