Growing up in the 60s, we knew technology would change our world. We watched Star Trek and the Jetsons. We looked forward to having a wrist device like Dick Tracy used to see and talk to his team. We trusted our president when he said we would land a man on the moon! We believed anything would be possible in the next 50 years.
Fast-forward to the late 80s when I was hired to work in a data center. I saw my first mainframe computer. It was an oversized load, taking up a huge room and requiring several employees to make sure jobs and back-up tapes were run properly so information would be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. That mainframe enabled me to send my first email. It went to a co-worker in the same suite using a specific programming application that allowed me to write on a black screen with green letters. Some people still used typewriters, but not me! We were cutting edge and proud of it! Technology was changing and giving us more tools with which to communicate and do our jobs.
Today, technology touches our lives in so many ways. I use my iPad to play peekaboo and talk with my granddaughter who lives a thousand miles away. We have smart phones with more memory than our old PCs. Electronic tablets are taking the place of spiral bound notebooks. Our ability to gather and interpret data seems unlimited.
Sometimes the speed of change and development are overwhelming. How do we keep up with it all? How can we learn about, embrace, and leverage what will help us do our jobs better? How do we address some of these changes in our places of work? This issue of the HR Florida Review doesn’t have all the answers, but we hope it will start conversations at your chapter meetings and other gatherings. We hope it will encourage you to ask questions and share best practices with one another. Technology is a great resource, but so are you, and one of the many questions going forward may be just how expansive the human face of HR will be in years to come!
Karen Goodlett SPHR