What is TRaD and How Will it Affect Your Company?

Thursday June 23, 2016

The future of work is a core focus for many businesses in the 21st century. Advances in technology have paved the way for innovative workforce structuring that enables collaboration, information-sharing and communication in ways never seen before.

The trend doesn’t appear to be slowing anytime soon. In fact, a study conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers found that 53 percent of 10,000 surveyed in the U.S., U.K., China, India and Germany think that technological developments will cause massive evolution in the way people work over the next 5 – 10 years.

The transformation has already begun in many ways. One of the most notable ways that work – and, in some respects, the economy – has changed is the growth of the mobile workforce.

How Do You Define it?

As the U.S. Department of Labor pointed out, many industries like hospitality, manufacturing and healthcare have joined emerging companies in high-tech or service-based sectors in developing a new models of work.

For some organizations, this means embracing the “gig” economy by building relationships with freelancers; enabling existing office-based staff to work remotely; or providing employees who travel upwards of 80 percent of the time with technology and support that allows them to be productive – while also ensuring security for intellectual property, sensitive information or documents that require additional levels of protection.

Sara Sutton Fell, founder and CEO of FlexJobs, created an acronym that captures this major feature and function of the future of work – TRaD. This translates into a three-part definition of the mobile workforce:

  • Telecommuting
  • Remote
  • Distributed

From startups to small businesses to global corporations, it’s likely you’ve felt the effects of one or more of the three components TRaD. In an article for Entrepreneur, Fell highlighted a number of companies that have implemented workplace policies that support a mobile workforce.

One of those is Dell, which created a program called Connected Workplace and has set a goal of having 50 percent of its workforce remote by 2020. The tech company has made remote work part of its overall business strategy, providing employees with the support they need to achieve with professional benchmarks – and integrating flexibility into their career paths.

High Impact, Low Impact

The PricewaterhouseCoopers report emphasized the role of the “Orange World” in the future of work – meaning, businesses are responding to fragmentation by working to minimize fixed costs and pushing for greater flexibility by empowering employees. In other words, they want to create high impact business structures that have a low impact on operating costs.

In anticipation of the growing demand for solutions that enable mobile workers, Cartridge World partnered with global technology leader Samsung that provides true mobile printing functionality to telecommuting, remote or distributed workers. With the PrintWorldTM mobile app, on-the-go or teleworking employees who need access to printing and scanning functionality away from the office or home can securely and efficiently do so at participating locations.

This type of innovation effectively bridges the gap between secure, on-demand mobile printing and the needs of the global TRaD workforce.