Photo by Daria Nepriakhina on Unsplash

Upwork has released its third annual “Future Workforce Report” which reveals that 73% of all small business teams in the U.S. will have remote workers by 2028. The report analyzed the hiring patterns and behaviors of more than 1,000 hiring managers. This change in work arrangement is being driven by hiring managers belonging to the millennial and Gen Z generations who prioritize future workforce planning three times more than the older generations.

Around 74% of young managers let their employees do their jobs remotely, compared to 58% for baby boomers. They are also 30% more likely to hire freelancers when the right skillsets are not present in the organization compared to baby boomers.

The percentage of younger generation managers is expected to increase to 58% by 2028. The report also found that young managers’ usage of freelancers has increased by two-fold in the past several years compared to baby boomers. They are also likely to keep using freelancers for strategic partnerships in multiple projects. They cite improved cost, access to specialized skills and increased productivity as the main reasons for hiring freelancers.

Small businesses will need to adapt to this new set-up and adjust to employees who will expect flexible work schedule. According to Matthew Mottola, Future of Work and On-Demand Talent Program Manager at Microsoft, small businesses that embraced flexibility and agile talent strategy can boost innovation and change within their organization.