Plan Now for Tomorrow’s Robotic Workforce

September 10, 20158:00 am
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Advancements in technology, industrial revolution and rise of artificial intelligence will soon destroy more jobs than it actually creates. There have been debates springing up on the future of artificial intelligence and dangers it poses to the human workforce of today in future. Robots are soon taking over more jobs, leaving little left to human control.

The fact is we are on the cusp of ‘second machine age’ clanging onto automation, artificial intelligence systems and robotics. Self-driven cars will soon be widespread across the country.

As of now, automated checkout technology has replaced jobs of cashiers and computerised check-ins have become a norm at airports, the robotic revolution is expected to touch every aspect of our lives soon in the near future – from personal relations to professional workspaces.

Witnessing Robotic Era

While the Industrial Revolution centuries ago, left us with goodness as in creator of mass jobs, the robotic revolution in all contrast is going to be the job killer in future. In a recent Pew survey on the future of jobs, 48% of the 1,896 prominent scientists, analysts, and engineers questioned said they envision a future in which robots and digital agents have displaced significant numbers of both blue- and white-collar workers.

The jobs with most vulnerability will be those of professional drivers and truckers. By 2020, all the leading automotive manufacture brands plan to be selling autonomous vehicles in some form.

Uber’s CEO Travis Kalanick has already mentioned plans to one day replace all of the company’s drivers with self-driving cars. Other fields where displacement is imminent (or already happening) include low-skill jobs in customer service, health care, and home maintenance.

See: Prediction: The Workforce in 2020

This is not all. Even white-collar roles which were once thought to be the exclusive domain of humans to stay untouched by technology and robotic times are on the brink of soon to be on the chopping block as well.

Experts in Pew survey predict, the first white-collar jobs to be chopped from the list will be   paralegals, bookkeepers, transcriptionists, and medical secretaries.

Also with the widespread use of DIY taxation and accounting software, even roles that are not just repetitive functions but require key ability to learn and adapt to new information will soon be replaced by the AI revolution. This indeed is a scary portrayal of dark times for tomorrow’s qualified workforce. What will be the future of jobs?

While we are still in the days of anticipation, but some job roles have already been displaced and this is happening really quick. The change is drastically shocking.

However, what’s unclear in this maze is – will automation of low-tech roles lead to more high-tech ones? Such as new jobs and job roles will emerge in the marketplace. The extent of downsizing and scale of the problem across all industries becomes apparent in the upcoming AI age.

2013 University of Oxford study concluded that the combined advances in computers, automation, and AI could put up to 47% of U.S. jobs at risk within the next two decades alone.

This means roles that require advance skill sets will be safe, while those at the bottom of the economic ladder could be at higher risk. This still leaves – the whole sectors of the economy – particularly the ones that employ the middle class could be soon hollowed out.

How do we keep the economy humming when jobs themselves have grown obsolete? How do people support themselves? These are some key questions that need careful pondering. Leaving you with a food for thought! Do write back with comments.

Source: fastcompany.com

Also read: Building a People Ecosystem to Develop “Future-Skill” Workforce