The last three weeks of 2015 have seen much news about the future of work.

You don’t just have to worry about your deskmate being a robot: what if your boss is, and you don’t have a desk?

Or your customer data is at risk from non-aligned, temporary workers? Or your brand is vulnerable to public concern that you do not treat staff fairly?

The Observer newspaper recently identified five key trends in the future of work:

  • Artificial intelligence
  • Different workplace structures, including freeflowing career paths
  • The human cloud
  • Work place monitoring
  • The end of retirement: we are all going to work for longer (if we can)

Meanwhile, the week commencing 7 December 2015 saw over £400m wiped off the stock value of leading UK retailer, Sports Direct following reports about its usage of highly evolved workplace structures, its treatment of pay and its employee oversight.

Our international report “Modern work: technology, change, brand, risk“ anticipates the importance of these subjects. It considers the increasingly fragmented modern workplace which is evolving so fast that in the US it is estimated 1 in 3 workers are freelance. If you read Law at Work, you should read it. We cover how a combination of hard technology and the soft technology of changing work models may play out, with topics including:

  • Uber and the challenges of disruptive models that drive efficiency;
  • Crowdsourcing and the collaborative economy: the likelihood of resistance by established interests;
  • Outsourcing: how UK laws are more employee-friendly than elsewhere in the EU, and may be debated in the forthcoming Brexit discussions;
  • International secondments and their streetwise management;
  • Self-employment and the conflict between entrepreneurialism and the State’s need to collect income taxes.

We think these themes will dominate many employers’ (and non-employers’) strategic thinking for years to come.