A new report from Citi and the University of Oxford indicates that remote working positions could be offshored, but that innovation-centric work would need to be done in-person.
The report revealed that many professional services jobs can be done remotely for lower costs, which could cause a fundamental shift in developed economies where the future of work focuses on creativity and innovation.
With this, new opportunities could arise in knowledge industries such as technology, particularly for roles that focus on designing new products or service algorithms.
“Jobs that can be done remotely can often also be automated and offshored, meaning that occupations that center on the kind of sporadic interactions that drive innovation will become an ever-growing share of the workforce in advanced economies,” said Dr. Carl Benedikt Frey, report author and director of the Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Work at the University of Oxford.
Although the amount of remote work is dwindling down from the peak of the pandemic, up to 20% of work can still be done remotely, which could lead to a 5% productivity spike.
However, while productivity could blossom, extended periods of isolation could hurt the initial creativity and innovation growth. This could lead to professional services jobs becoming more automated or off-shored and more thought-driven work to be done in-person.