Hybrid Jobs of the Future: The Evolution of Careers

Career Advice

Sponsored by GetSmarter, a 2U, Inc. brand

Karina Bean, Director, Consumer Insights & Analytics, GetSmarter, a 2U, Inc. brand

How much has your job changed in the past year? Stripped of the luxuries of the air-conditioned office and watercooler chinwag, today’s competitive, complex, and turbulent business environment has been brought into stark focus. 

In the ‘Future of Work Is Here’ report, GetSmarter, a 2U, Inc. brand, revealed that the traditional career path is likely to be retired along with the Baby Boomer generation. Today, younger workers (aged 25–34) change jobs every 2.8 years, and GetSmarter’s recent career outlook research suggests that 55 per cent of all professionals expect to change jobs within the next 12 months. The modern career trajectory is no longer a predictable climb to the top, but an ever-adapting, flexible continuum. 

At the same time, the swift rate of technological change has increased the pace at which workplace-ready skills must update and evolve. This has given rise to ‘hybrid’ roles, in which job descriptions are expanding, and specific requirements for given positions aren’t set in stone. 

When I graduated in 2010, my curriculum didn’t include any in-depth data analysis (beyond an entry-level introduction in Statistics 101), yet today I find myself in a profession that values data analysis above all else. This highlights a key aspect of job hybridisation: existing roles are taking on elements from adjacent fields, while the toolkits needed to perform them are expanding, evolving, and merging interpersonal and technical expertise. For example, the once predominantly creative position of the marketing manager now requires a uniquely complex combination of skills prerequisites, including statistical analysis, design, and even programming.

What’s more, new roles are being carved out as skill sets update and transform. A decade ago, pursuing a career as an artificial intelligence specialist wouldn’t have been on the radar of the average 18 year old, but today it’s just one of many novel career avenues available. An entirely new breed of hybrid jobs is rapidly increasing in popularity and importance – especially as these positions are largely more resistant and resilient to the effects of widespread automation.

For the forward-thinking professional, the message is clear: skills are the currency of today’s job market, and the key to unlocking mobility within and between roles. And for the future-focused company, the goal must be to help its workforce acquire these new skills. GetSmarter’s ‘Future of Work Is Here’ report found that it’s only through upskilling their current workforce that companies can expect to foster the future workforce they need. Moreover, 92 per cent of respondents feel more engaged when offered upskilling opportunities – a genuine win-win.

How can employers and employees identify their own skills gaps, and better align on the skill sets that the future will demand? In GetSmarter’s new guide, ‘The Great Career Reset’, we examine practical steps for solving the looming skills gap conundrum. Ultimately, if we want to build resilience and take advantage of rampant disruption, each of us must understand hybridisation and how it affects our own context today. The future of work is here. Are you ready?


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(Nov, 2020). ‘The rise of “hybrid” roles highlights the benefits of flexibility’. Retrieved from The Economist.

(Jan, 2019). ‘The hybrid job economy’. Retrieved from Burning Glass.

(Jan, 2019). ‘The hybrid job economy’. Retrieved from Burning Glass.

(Sep, 2020). ‘The Future of Work is Here’. Retrieved from GetSmarter.