The media has inflamed hysteria that artificial intelligence (AI) will steal jobs away from American workers. The increasing use of computer automation will displace some workers. But a new study by the World Economic Forum also shows that 133 million new positions will be created in the next few years. Other organizations agree. Here’s what the study had to say about what’s in store for the future of work by 2025.
Understanding AI and its Overall Effect on Work
Computers and the algorithms that run software are going to change the world of work. While many people may picture robots stealing their jobs, what’s more, likely is that computer automation will improve business efficiency so that reduced headcounts will occur. But national consulting firms EY and PwC say that, while some lower-level jobs will be eliminated, far more jobs could be created, if you have the right skills.
The World Economic Forum (WEF) agrees with this assessment. In a new report on the future of jobs, they say that, while AI could eliminate some jobs early on, the net gain from using this technology has far more benefit than harm. The study suggested over time AI could create 58 million new jobs over the next few years.
The study suggested the division of work divided between human and machine will gradually shift over the next few years:
- Currently, the distribution of work is about 71% human and 29% machine.
- By 2022 the division of work is expected to be 58% human and 42% machine.
- By 2025 it will change to 48% human and 52% machine.
To stay current in the new AI-driven work world, employees must add to their skill base to remain relevant in their jobs. The study showed that 50% of all employers are planning to reduce their full-time workforce in 2022 due to AI automation. However, 40% say they plan on increasing their workforce and 25% expect AI to create more jobs, not less. How should workers plan for this new world of work?
Job Skills To Build for 2025
A recent Forbes article highlighted some of the best jobs that workers should plan for in the coming years. Roles like software engineers and social media specialists are obvious jobs to train for in the next five years or so. Look and plan for jobs that focus on “human” skills, such as marketing or sales. Human customer service agents will still be in demand in the coming years, along with data entry, and some accounting functions.
The WEF report said the industries that would experience losses include mining, aviation, tourism, and other services firms. However, far from serving to kill industry growth, companies like PwC say the impact of AI automation could contribute to the global economy to the tune of $15 trillion by 2030.
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