Artificial Intelligence is part of the next wave of innovation that will revolutionise the way we connect and the way we work. The rapid rise of AI has the potential to alter dozens of industries and shape the future of work.
In the next few years, we will witness a transformation in work: machines will be able to carry out more tasks than humans could ever do. The future of work relies on the rise of artificial intelligence: some professions will decline, while others will rise, but most of all, work will change.
The Rise of AI: What Does This Mean?
AI is rising at a pace that humans cannot compete with. After all, it is considered the Fourth Industrial Revolution for some reason.
The advent of ChatGPT and now GoogleBard took the world by surprise with their capabilities. Artificial Intelligence is automating tasks that were once only capable of being done by humans and will only continue to grow. Truth be told, the market for artificial intelligence is expected to show strong growth in the coming decade and reach two trillion dollars by 2030.
Thanks to rapid technology growth, new ground-breaking autonomous systems are appearing in the world, ranging from autonomous vehicles to automated check-outs in grocery stores. The rise of AI is now perceived as a social and economic opportunity with the potential to create new markets and new professions.
But what is Artificial Intelligence? AI is a technological advancement that allows a machine to understand, act and learn with similar levels of human intelligence. AI systems can receive data, process it, and answer autonomously to solve practical problems, enabling independent decision-making, supported by digital data, and replicating human skills such as reasoning, learning, planning, and creativity.
From reducing operational costs, increasing efficiency, growing revenue, and maintaining a competitive advantage, AI has a wide range of uses. Artificial Intelligence can make humans more productive, freeing professionals from certain mechanical and repetitive tasks, and streamlining job processes.
The Way We Work Is About To Change: How Is AI Affecting Jobs?
Nearly all jobs will be affected by automation in one way or another. Statistically talking, around 300 million positions worldwide could be impacted by the advancement of artificial intelligence. From healthcare, transport, and banking to retail and science, AI has the power to disrupt all aspects of life, economy, and society.
The World Economic Forum’s Future of Jobs Report 2023 states that nearly a quarter of all jobs (23%) globally will change in the next five years. In total, 69 million new jobs are expected to be created and 83 million to be eliminated.
As more and more tasks are getting done by artificial intelligence and fewer are getting done by actual humans, AI is already changing the future of work. When leveraged correctly, AI can help save time, streamline processes, and provide important insights that improve decision-making for businesses.
Jobs lost, jobs gained, jobs changed
As previously stated, artificial intelligence can automate job tasks that were done by humans. Across the globe, 50% of current work activities are technically automatable by adapting current technologies.
Thus, some job positions will be surpassed by AI inevitably. By 2030, 15% of the global workforce, about 400 million workers, could be displaced by automation. Among the jobs subject to automation are cashiers, with the increase of self-checkouts, and factory workers, due to technologies that are able to replace repetitive tasks. Customer service, construction, cleaning, and driving are also jobs that will likely be affected by the rise of AI.
But not all is lost. Technology itself has historically been a job creator so, in the same period, there will be growth in demand for work and new jobs will be created, such as data scientists, responsible for managing data to identify patterns, and machine learning engineers, responsible for building AI systems.
The World Economic Forum estimates that by 2025, technology will create at least 12 million more jobs than the ones it will replace, a positive sign that automation will benefit society in the long term.
But more than lost jobs or new jobs, jobs all around the world will change, as machines will be integrated with human labour, especially when it comes to repetitive tasks.
Technology disruption, sector by sector
New technologies, such as artificial intelligence, can disrupt several sectors and industries. Here are some of the most affected sectors currently:
- Customer Service: More and more industries are adopting AI-powered chatbots to provide customer service. With the rise of AI, we can only expect these chatbots to get better at handling customers’ questions and problems.
- Transportation: From self-driving cars that can safely drive passengers from A to B, navigate roads and avoid obstacles, to trains, ships, and airplanes that function autonomously to make transport safer and more efficient, AI holds the potential to revolutionise the sector.
- Banking: Banking is using AI-based technologies to determine consumer preferences to make better decisions and provide customised financial advice, targeted product recommendations, reinforce cybersecurity and shorten support wait times.
- Healthcare:This is one of the most controversial industries where the use of AI is rising. Healthcare industry professionals are using AI to diagnose diseases, recommend treatments through data analysis, and even perform surgery with robotics.
- Retail: Retail is using AI technologies to interact with customers, gain valuable insights into their preferences, and deliver highly personalised shopping experiences to consumers.
Preparing For The Future Of Work
AI will inevitably shape the future of work. But how should we prepare for this future infused with technology? The answer is reskilling and upskilling.
The ability to understand and work with technology will matter more than ever to ensure that humans and machines work together effectively. For the employees in positions that will likely decline with the rise of AI, reskilling will be a must, while for those in growing fields, there is a clear need for upskilling and constant learning.
With the rise of AI, many employees will likely need to change occupations and so, they will need different skills to thrive in the workplace of the future.
While machines are replacing much face-to-face work, automation has led to the necessity of creating new jobs and positions within a company, as well as new skills. For example, as self-checkout machines are introduced in stores, cashiers can become checkout assistance helpers, who can help answer questions or solve problems in the machines.
Reskilling entails readjusting an employee’s skills for a new job within the company to meet a business’ needs. Several studies show that 40% of workers will need reskilling by 2025. Companies will have to reinvent themselves and reskilling will be crucial for new job opportunities and career development.
Technology continues to rapidly change the way most organisations operate. While basic digital skills are already a must for companies, the demand for advanced technological skills such as programming will grow rapidly in the next few years.
Upskilling facilitates continuous learning by providing training programs and development opportunities. When it comes to digital skills, not everyone will have to learn to code, but many people will need to understand artificial intelligence, data analytics, and other emergent technologies.
Digital upskilling enables employees to have the necessary skills to adapt to new technologies and tools and gives them new opportunities for career advancement and personal growth, as well as job security.
The future of work will be profoundly shaped by artificial intelligence and emergent technologies. Technology is the prospect of businesses and if you are looking to stay at the forefront of innovation, we are here to help. Talk to us!