Managing The Most Diverse Workforce

April 25, 2018 | Thought Pieces


By Angeli Recella

The fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0) is here now.

Last year, majority (88%) of business leaders said it is very important to prepare for Industry 4.0 yet only a few (11%) understand how to navigate the needs for this new workforce. The digital upheaval brought with it the most diverse workforce we have seen in history so far. Not only do we have four different generations in the same workplace, we also see the growth of alternative workers.

What is Industry 4.0?

The first industrial revolution began when steam power and the power loom radically changed the way goods were manufactured in the 18th century. The second industrial revolution was ushered in by the possibility to mass produce, thanks to electricity and assembly lines. In the 1970s, advances in computing enabled us to program machines and networks which gave way to the third industrial revolution. Marrying both physical and digital technologies, the fourth industrial revolution paved the way for analytics, artificial intelligence and the internet of things which allows digital enterprises to be holistic, not just interconnected.

Talent & Workforce for Industry 4.0

  1. Four different generations in one workplace. Baby Boomers and Gen Xers are already ushering in the next generation of leaders, the Millennials. Projected to dominate the workforce in numbers by 2020, Millennials are also known to be the least loyal generation. On top of all this, we are seeing the youngest group enter the labor market already- Generation Z or the iGen.
  2. Augmented workforce posing a geographical challenge. Most (61%) business leaders anticipate that their organizations will trend more toward the alternative workforce- this includes contractual, temporary, and ad hoc employees. To navigate the new workforce ecosystem, companies must rewrite the rules to include the alternative employees.

“The most innovative company must be the most diverse one”, as Apple Inc. famously pointed out, but diversity is nothing without inclusion. Companies must act as designers and engineers to successfully navigate through managing the talent & workforce of Industry 4.0.

How Can Companies Get Started?

  1. Know your core. Businesses must identify their core functions. This is necessary to be able to identify which functions may be outsourced to freelancers or gig economy workers. Using Apple as an example who’s core competence with respect to the iPhone is design – they would never outsource that. Manufacturing is not core, so they outsource to wherever it can be done most efficiently. When you identify your company’s core value proposition, then you can design around it and be informed on how to augment the organization.
  2. Design for flexibility. To be inclusive in a highly diverse organization, your company’s processes and systems must be designed for flexibility. Imagine having to create a fixed work schedule for, say, four different time zones. Instead of fixed work schedules, you may explore designing flexible working arrangements to address all employees’ time and geographic positions. Flexibility as a design principle should seep into other human capital facets. The third priority in the 2018 Global Human Capital Trends report talks about how the way employees are rewarded should be flexible. Talent today wants a custom rewards experience that reflects how they live, work, and communicate—not a one-size-fits-all approach.
  3. Organize for agility. The top priority in the same Human Capital Trends report is the “symphonic C-suite”. In Industry 4.0, teams should be leading teams. Senior leaders must get out of their silos and act as one to navigate today’s constantly and rapidly changing environment.
  4. Let data be king. Establish systems to track performance of each individuals and teams. This will empower the business leaders to make informed decisions and calibrate strategies moving forward. There are many tools available to make this easy for your company.
  5. Make sure culture is queen. In chess, the King may be the most important, but the Queen is the most powerful. Similar to the Queen of chess, company culture can enable your moves unlike any other element in the business. Getting culture right dictates who can make decisions, which values and competencies should be focused on, and what type of talent you attract.


If you’re keen on learning what we do at STORM Technologies to address the diverse workforce, check out our flexible benefits solution, trusted by clients. Book a meeting with our representatives for more info. 

In our continued effort to be the lead in benefits technology in the Philippines, STORM has also recently launched ALLCARE–a decentralized platform that makes company benefits like healthcare, insurance, training, and other perks accessible to all workers including contractuals, freelancers and self-employed individuals.  If you’re a freelancer or gig economy worker, benefit provider, HR executive, insurance firm owner, or a blockchain enthusiast, let’s talk! Register your email at and join the revolution


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