Technology is advancing at unprecedented speeds. We are now always on and ever connected in our social lives, but how is this going to affect our professional lives? Yes, we can now answer our bosses email at midnight, but it is going far beyond that. In the distant future your colleague may be a robot. In fact the World Economic Forum warned that by 2020 technology advancements will lead to a loss of over 5 million jobs.
“Many people fear a jobless future — and their anxiety is not unwarranted: Gartner, an information technology research and advisory firm, predicts that one-third of jobs will be replaced by software, robots, and smart machines by 2025. Artificial intelligence and robots are not just challenging blue-collar jobs; they are starting to take over white-collar professions as well. Financial and sports reporters, online marketers, surgeons, anesthesiologists, and financial analysts are already in danger of being replaced by robots.” We know how to teach robots how to automate many tasks we have taught them how to put cars together and how to work in shipping warehouse, as they do at Amazon. But blue collar jobs are not the only ones at risk any more, white collar jobs that were once thought to require more thought and human touch, just need to be broken down into more tasks which we can then assign a robot to. The good news is, for now these robots need to be made, repaired, maintained, and trained or programmed to execute these tasks, and for that we still need humans. The challenge is that these new jobs will require a much more skilled talent pool; we will have to wait and see if our workforce can take on these roles.
Jobs at Risk
Automation of future jobs will create new jobs. The unknown is whether the new jobs will surpass those lost due to automation. In the near future technology will help us work more efficiently, but as we look further out it may work more efficiently without us. Especially if robots start taking over roles that carry more prestige such as doctors and lawyers. “’You’re going to see doctors taking more of the role that involves the personal interaction with patients and less of the role of trying to keep huge amounts of evidence in there head. The nurse may become more prestigious than the doctor. But if you look around, there are also new kinds of creative roles being produced across the market. There are so many jobs that didn’t exist just a few years ago.’ […] Robotics and AI will continue to progress—at an unprecedented rate—and though Gownder believes the doomsayers have overblown the threat of widespread automation, he too sees reason for concern—and for continued to debate.”
Silicon Valley is the hub for technological advancements; we will see this play out all around us. We won’t be waiting for someone else to show us how it’s done. If you are ready to become a part of this movement with a role in accounting, administration, finance, human resources, marketing, operations or sales at a high tech firm give us a call today.