Future of Work Report: Trends and opportunities in workforces, workplaces and work lives

Thursday 6 October, 2022 | By: Emma Clarke

Queensland businesses are able to plan for their workforce, workplace and work life tomaximise long-term business opportunities and respond to emerging trends with Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ’s) Future or Work Report,supported by Australian Retirement Trust. 

CCIQ's Future of Work Report, released today, provides critical insight into trends expected to influence Queensland businesses long-term. 

CCIQ CEO Heidi Cooper said the future of work was an evolving and critical issue for all Queensland businesses, both now and into the future. 

“Queensland is in a unique position, with opportunities on the horizon which will present significant growth and meaningful change to how we work and do business,” Ms Cooper said. 


Future of Work Report Trends


CCIQ worked with Australian Retirement Trust to understand emerging trends in Queensland’s future of work and how businesses could plan for their future growth and workforce sustainability. 

"Now is the time for businesses to be preparing their workforces, workplaces and their work lives to ensure they’re best placed to future proof their business and capitalise on these opportunities,” Ms Cooper said.  

Ms Cooper said the report showed trends and changes businesses expected to impact them, and discussed strategies for how they could proactively transform their workforce, workplace and work life. 

CCIQ surveyed more than 500 businesses across the state and led focus groups to gain critical insight into emerging trends in Queensland’s future of work. 

The report found Queensland businesses were considering strategies to adapt to shifts to future business operations, with a keen focus on digitisation and skills to respond to new technologies and trends, developing consumer and market demand and future opportunities. 

70% of businesses said a need for stronger digital skills among their workforces was likely to impact their businesses. More than half expect they’ll need to develop e-commerce strategies to meet consumer and market demand long-term while adapting to emerging trends in the way they engage with customers.   

“Learning at work will need to be a top priority for Australian employees and employers in the future,” Ms Cooper said.  

“As future skills continue to evolve, future workforce planning must focus on skills and tasks required, instead of on jobs. It means lifelong reskilling and retraining will be required for all employees in the future and close to 70% of businesses told us it would have moderate to critical impacts on their future of work.   

“While digital skills needs are highly desirable, the skills of the future will also focus on human interactions such as communication, customer service and personal skills. 

“To further enable the transition of skills for the current to future workforce, it is important for businesses and government to work together to design and ensure retraining and upskilling opportunities are fit-for-purpose and widely available for all. 

“Businesses and industry leaders expect future skills to look significantly different, and it’s critical training be widely available and accessible for all businesses to bridge the rapidly increasing demand for new skills.”  

The most significant impact to workplace trends among Queensland businesses in the next five years is high speed internet accessibility. Three quarters of businesses say difficulties in accessing high-speed internet is impacting their workplace and more than one in three of those were experiencing critical impacts.   

“Our aim is to support Queensland businesses to be sustainable and resilient, both in the immediate and long term. To achieve this, businesses need access to infrastructure to improve their digital connectivity,” Ms Cooper said.   

Businesses and industry leaders indicate businesses want to support their employees to find purpose and meaning in work as well as support employees mental health and wellbeing. More than half of businesses indicated a need for positive mental health and wellbeing among their staff would have a significant impact on the future of work life.   

Australian Retirement Trust Chief Executive OfficerBernard Reilly said The Future of Work Report was a helpful tool for employers and workforces to plan for future trends and impacts. 

“We know there are extensive opportunities available for businesses and their workforces across Queensland, but both need to be prepared and able to meet evolving trends, impacts and influences on the future of work,” Mr Reilly said. 

“The Future of Work Report has come at the right time for businesses as we witness ongoing developments in digitisation as well as social working trends in a post-COVID environment. 

“The report is a valuable and timely asset that we’re proud to support for the future development of Queensland businesses and workforces.” 

Download The Future of Work Report.  

Key facts 

  • Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ)’s Future of Work Report is out today, supported by Australian Retirement Trust. 
  • 70% of businesses said a need for stronger digital skills among their workforce would have a moderate to critical impact on the future of their business. 
  • Mental health and wellbeing support is the top concern in future work life for Queensland businesses, expected to have moderate to critical impacts on 70% of businesses surveyed. 37% of businesses expected major to critical impacts. 
  • 61% of Queensland businesses reported digital engagement and e-commerce would have moderate to critical impacts on the future of their business. 13% indicated this would have critical impacts for their workplace in the next five years.     

About CCIQ 

CCIQ is Queensland’s peak business body. For 150 years we have represented businesses of every size, in every industry and in every part of the state.  

We’re a politically independent not-for profit which means our focus is on supporting Queensland businesses. 

About Australian Retirement Trust  

Australian Retirement Trust is the super fund formed through the merger of Sunsuper and QSuper on 28 February 2022. 

We are one of Australia's largest super funds, proud to take care of over $200 billion in retirement savings for more than two million members. 

As a fund that works for members, not shareholders, we work in members' best interests and commit to returning profits to them as lower fees and better services. 



Acknowledgement of Country

Business Chamber Queensland respectfully acknowledges the Traditional Owners and custodians of the lands from across Queensland and the Torres Strait. We acknowledge the Jagera and Turrbal people as the Traditional Custodians of Meanjin (Brisbane), the lands where our office is located and the place we meet, work and learn. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.