Time Management

Patricia Marie Arneson, University of Nebraska - Lincoln
The employment effects of technology, particularly in the office environment, has concerned employers, office managers, employment specialists, business educators, and women (who represent 99 percent of all secretaries and 97 percent of all typists). Technology-driven concerns have been raised regarding deskilling and decreased demand for office personnel.^ This study analyzed technology's impact on employment in the office occupations, as reflected by demands of employers hiring office temporaries. Questionnaires were sent to 598 temporary help headquarter firms nationwide affiliated with the National Association of Temporary Services to determine specific job skills and training of office temporary workers; 263 usable responses were received.^ The study found that office technology has resulted in neither decreased demand nor deskilling of office workers. Office clerical/automation workers, predicted to be the fastest-growing temporary help occupational segment in the future, were currently most demanded by employers.^ The demographic profile of the typical office temporary was a white female, 25-34 years old, with 1-2 years' postsecondary education. Office workers sought temporary employment to schedule work flexibly, supplement income, explore jobs, acquire experience, and seek employment variety.^ Word processing positions commanded the highest salaries and were most demanded by employers. Although less than one-half of firms provided office automation training, word processing was the primary training offered. The use of IBM or compatible products and WordPerfect, Displaywrite, WordStar, Multimate Advantage, and Microsoft Word software was preferred over simulated equipment and software. Spreadsheet and database training ranked second and third, respectively, with Lotus and dBase the preferred spreadsheet and database packages.^ Although...