McKinsey Global Institute undertook a very interesting piece of analysis which attempts to divine what the future of work in the post-pandemic economy will look like.

Rather unsurprisingly the research reveals that work areas involving high physical proximity of workers (e.g. medical care, personal care, elements of leisure and travel) were subject to greatest short-term disruption during the COVID19 pandemic and they may see enduring effects. Outdoor work areas with low physical proximity (e.g. construction, farming) may see less long-term COVID19 impacts.

They highlight three particular trends that were accelerated by the COVID19 pandemic:

  1. Hybrid remote work could continue; 20 to 25 percent of workers in advanced economies and about 10 percent in emerging economies could work from home 3 to 5 days a week with the resulting knock-on impact on urban transport systems, restaurant/dining and shops/retail
  2. Growth in ecommerce and the “delivery economy” has really accelerated through 2020 and is expected to continue; disruption of related jobs in traditional “bricks-and-mortar” retail/hospitality will likely be accompanied by more jobs in logistics/distribution and delivery
  3. Companies have started to use automation and AI to deal with the COVID19 disruption and this may gather further momentum in the time ahead.

McKinsey’s scenarios suggest that more than 100 million workers in eight countries they assessed (China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States) may need to switch occupations by 2030!

You can download an Executive Summary of the analysis at the following link:


Leave a Reply