5 Career Trends to Watch in 2022

The previous year was a rocky ride for everyone.

The job market has seen significant upheaval in the last two years, owing mainly to the pandemic, and the situation is unlikely to improve during this year.

Still, what are the biggest job trends in 2022? Since the job market is so volatile, it’s more important than ever to keep up with significant changes and trends. 

Whether you are a recruiter or an employee, staying on top of things is your best chance of landing the best possible deal. All in all, upskilling online is always a good option. But what about the rest?

We’ve compiled a list of the 5 career trends to watch in 2022. Continue reading to learn how to make the most of your working life this year.

Remote Work Becomes The New Normal

Tens of millions of people experienced enforced lockdowns due to the global pandemic, leading to many of them having to adapt to working from home – and eventually getting to love it. According to a FlexJobs survey, 58% of people wanted to work from home permanently after the pandemic, and 39% preferred a hybrid environment. 

Studies have shown that remote workers exhibit higher levels of productivity compared to their in-office counterparts, and remote working opportunities allow businesses to hire from a more diverse pool of talent.

So, will work from home continue in 2022? Absolutely. People’s preference for working remotely isn’t going away, especially as COVID-19 variants emerge and extend lockdowns in various countries. Indeed, it is more of a permanent shift than a trend.

When applying for jobs, candidates will expect standard home and hybrid working options. At the same time, companies will need to offer flexible and home working options to attract and retain the best talent. Some people prefer to work in an office, while others prefer to work from home, and others require a combination of the two – and the best companies will accommodate this need.

AI-Enhanced Workforce

According to the World Economic Forum, AI and automation will create 97 million new jobs by 2025. However, people in many existing positions will see their roles change as they are increasingly expected to augment their abilities with AI technology. Initially, this AI will be used to automate repetitive elements of workers’ day-to-day roles, freeing up workers’ time to focus on areas that require a more human touch, such as creativity, imagination, high-level strategy, or emotional intelligence.

Lawyers, for example, will use technology to reduce the amount of time spent reviewing case histories to find precedents, and doctors will use computer vision capabilities to analyze medical records and scans to diagnose illness in patients. In retail, augmented analytics assists store managers with inventory planning and logistics and sales associates in predicting what individual customers will be looking for when they walk in. 

Marketers have access to an ever-expanding set of tools to help them target campaigns and segment audiences. Workers in engineering and manufacturing will increasingly have access to technology to understand how machinery works and predict where breakdowns are likely to occur.

Soft Skills Win Over Hard Skills

People study to earn degrees because college/university diplomas are required for entry-level positions. Historically, educational systems have prioritized hard skills such as science, math, and languages.

Soft skills such as teamwork, punctuality, and communication were also critical. They’ve long regarded soft skills as secondary to hard skills. However, the status quo is changing. Nowadays, soft skills are becoming increasingly important.

What caused this shift? Automation, AI, and similar technologies are generating actual business cases in which hard skills alone are no longer sufficient. Soft skills, on the other hand, fill this void.

This is why 91% of talent professionals believe soft skills will be critical in recruiting and HR. As many hard skills become obsolete, many soft skills become increasingly important. One programming language may become obsolete, but problem-solving skills and a strong work ethic will always be valuable.

Introducing The Four-Day Work Week 

Today’s employees don’t shy away from offering generous pay increases to attract and retain talent. According to research, year-to-date salary increases in the United States have exceeded 4%, compared to a historical norm of 2%.

However, with inflation factored in, real wages sunk deep. And if the situation continues to get progressively worse, compensation packages will significantly lose value. 

And while larger companies continue to compete for talent solely through compensation, some of those that lack the financial resources have a different approach: Their strategy is to reduce the number of working hours while keeping payment flat.

Throughout history, as wages rise, workers’ leisure time becomes more and more valuable. Reducing the working hours allows less liquid employers to compete with organizations that offer higher overall compensation but do not offer reduced hours. 

In the end, we’re likely to see a few organizations adopt 32-hour workweeks with equal pay as a new strategy to compete for knowledge workers.

Talent as a Service

While the attrition rates seen during the Great Resignation will likely decline over time, three trends will remain Higher expectations for employers to meet employees’ demands, an increase in the number of people on leave for longer periods at any given time, and lower longevity with the average employee tenure at some high-growth companies now estimated to be as low as 1.8 years.

Because of this convergence of trends, businesses will need to find innovative ways to outsource talent. Talent as a service, like software as a service, is a model that allows employers to hire flexible talent when they need it and for as long as they need it.

Employers like this approach because it reduces the risk of hiring and staffing. This model gives workers more freedom to change their careers and trajectories. Talent as a Service and contract workers at all levels will almost certainly become an essential part of any company’s long-term talent strategy, aligning with a broader shift to more entrepreneurial ways of working.


Let’s go over the facts one last time: How is the job market in 2022? The pandemic and its long-term consequences have highlighted the true costs of working. As businesses struggle to find qualified employees in this highly competitive labor market, we are reminded that “people prefer to work with people, not companies.” 

Will the job market get better in 2022? Attracting (and retaining) top talent necessitates that we are more people-centered and scrutinize how we treat one another.

And that’s why we at UNZA ECAMPUS are all about providing the best possible service to our students. Our accredited 100% online degree programmes are made with the intention to provide you with the most relevant industry knowledge while our faculty is devoted to helping you maximize your potential. 

If you want to determine if we’d be a good fit for your career plans, don’t hesitate to contact us or download the UNZA prospectus to learn more about the programmes that we offer.