Categories: Special ReportTechnology

Progress vs Transformation

Business travelers are stepping through a gateway into a different travel experience – but are we ready for it?
The history of technology is, generally speaking, one of advancement, thesis and synthesis, one idea that begets another; the long and tortuous path that took electricity from parlor room trick to useful power, or the methodical compilation of data that creates a modern drug. However, there are moments in time when forces come together in such ways as to divert the entire course of human endeavors. The introduction of the sextant which enabled more reliable transoceanic navigation, and the steam engine which launched the industrial revolution, are two such instances that come to mind.

Today we are in the midst of another such inflection point in technology – the instant, seemingly always on and universally available access to information and communication. Recent research from CareerBuilder identified seven major trends that have significantly influenced job creation over the last seven years. What do these trends have in common?

"At the heart of different factors shaping labor market dynamics today is this idea of constant connectivity," said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder and co-author of the study, entitled The Talent Equation. "The ability to connect with people or data anytime, anywhere speeds up technology innovation and medical advancements, bridges global markets and local communities, changes lifestyles and consumer expectations, and gives people more control over when and how they work." The research found the major contributor to changes in the work environment is technology, and the pace of innovation continues to accelerate. According to the report, “from an endless selection of apps to inventions in machine learning, artificial intelligence, robotics and 3-D printing, technology is introducing new possibilities for business and everyday life.”

Tech Threat or Promise? 
Perhaps nowhere are these technology-driven changes in workplace attitudes having a greater impact than among those employees whose jobs take them consistently on the road. Smartphones, tablets and laptops have become indispensable appendages for virtually every road warrior, and connectivity is far and away the most highly sought feature both in accommodations and in modes of transport. And the expectation is, the more technology we have, the better our business travel experience will be.

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