As of February 2022, Mark Zuckerberg made a commitment “to build the future of distributed work that we want, where opportunity isn’t limited by geography… to help people feel present together no matter where they are.” This is in the hopes of improving Meta values and to bring a more diverse working landscape.
“Where” we work over the past 3 years has changed, however, “how” we work has remained the same. Facebooks transformation into Meta, provides opportunity to position themselves as a company where Meta is their core principle. Working, particularly collaborative tasks, takes place in a physical three-dimensional setting, whilst technology used to work remotely is limited to two dimensions. Productivity has overcome changes enforced throughout the pandemic. Collaboration on the other hand, has suffered greatly.
Mark Zuckerberg aims to bring an end to frustrations surrounding the limitations of remote work. This will be through the adoption of technology that offers freedom and flexibility, something that many have come accustomed to, without compromising the success of our work.
Meta believes they will become central to our needs, by providing support that is required for the future of distributed work. Much like the iPhone, it was not required until the invention of apps.
For years, the technology industry has fought to build a diverse workforce and eliminate bias, except according to the Harvey Nash Group’s research, the average proportion of women in technology teams is just under a quarter, and only 12% of digital leaders are female.
Despite it being impossible to remove bias within any corporation, Mark Zuckerberg aims to tackle this with new features within the Metaverse. In this technology world you can choose how you present yourself. The Metaverse could enable an organisation to ask candidates to interview in the same likeness, with no individual characteristics. This gives candidates the opportunity to avoid bias, which they may have previously experienced.
A shift in power
As of January 2022, reports show that eighty-seven percent of Millennials want greater flexibility. This comes as no surprise with the increased cost of housing and education.
Distributed work has increased access to global talent. But it has become clear that candidates who work near their physical workspace, on the other hand, may not be as present as they once were. 45% of candidates are seeking work from organisations who provide ‘work from anywhere’, this is a new post-COVID19 demand.
The Metaverse provides a new spectrum of work opportunities for everyone involved. Access to data and hardware remain a concern; the digital divide threatens advances in inclusion. However, distributed work makes more positive possibilities for individuals from less-privileged backgrounds.
The Metaverse is now
Many people value a sense of place, and although this is usually physical, Mark Zuckerberg believes the virtual place can be just as powerful. Zuckerberg has stated that Meta is supporting people in feeling present ‘together no matter where they are’.
Huge computational power is required for a successful Metaverse, to blend realities, however, Meta has already retained an AI supercomputer called the AI Research Super Cluster (RSC). This specific computer is the fifth fastest in the world, and by July it is expected to be the fastest. It may seem impossible to work in the Metaverse, but in March 2022 Decentraland hosted its first Metaverse fashion week. New and exciting platforms are being developed and tested every week within the Metaverse.
Distributed work within the Metaverse is not certain for the future, nevertheless, two points are clear. The Metaverse can enable fully formed dispersed work without sacrificing our newfound flexibility, and it can assist us in tackling inequality in a more complex way than ever before.