Will robots take your job?
Luckily there’s now an easy way to find out, so keep reading 🙂
We’re living in the age of technological disruption, with industries bracing themselves for imminent shockwaves.
Led by the rise of machine learning, AI and automation, tomorrow’s world of work may look very different to our current landscape.
Therefore, it becomes nothing if not sensible to forecast future trends where possible, especially regarding our robotic competition and potential career prospects.
This website has a great breakdown of the industries which are most likely to be affected, along with a specific threat rating for specific roles.
How prepared are you?
Let’s take an example: As I’m in the marketing game, we’ll use that.
The website gives me a 1.4% chance of automation.
On the surface, that seems pretty good. However, I think this is wholly optimistic.
We’re currently experiencing a digital deluge of SAAS tools, all designed to streamline the online process and make our lives ‘easier’.
I would say this is being achieved across the board.
A simple example is chatbots, which I utilise myself.
Chatbots allow websites to run interactive, pre-defined programmes to engage with website visitors and answer common queries, redirecting visitors to pages of interest, collecting leads and driving sales.
Check mine out on this very page 🙂
Whereas this function would once have been fulfilled by an extended sales team, the natural language learning of future bots will drastically reduce the need for human manpower.
Add to that the wide assortment of other data-gathering tools which reduce the requirement for human brainpower, and you have a far more efficient process for identifying behavioural patterns and optimising for them.
You just have to use the ad platforms to see such algorithms in action, with campaign and budget management offering up unparalleled amounts of user data.
That’s not to mention creative tasks like copywriting and article creation.
A content-producing algorithm developed by OpenAI showed that it was more than capable of parsing current affairs and writing strikingly good copy, to the extent that the company pulled the research from the public domain for fear of malicious use and fake news dissemination.
When computers know us better than we know ourselves, there’s really nothing we can do that they can’t.
As so much of marketing is online these days, it doesn’t appear that we’ll have long to wait.
And this view seems to be shared, will the website poll predicting a 39% chance of marketing automation within the next two decades.
My feeling is that many industries will be affected in a similar way to supermarket workers.
Go to Tesco and whereas in the past a line of cashiers awaited eagerly at the checkout, there’s now an army Dalek machines ready to repeat themselves ad infinitum about a problem with your scanning.
There are still humans available for those uncomfortable with self-checkout, but their numbers seem to be dwindling and will no doubt fall even further with a new, tech-savvy generation.
A similar transition will surely affect other industries, with a gradual encroachment of technology pushing the human workforce to the fringes.
Not a fell swoop, so much as a slow ceding of control to machines at the expense of human lever pullers and button pushers.
Let’s take another example in the health field. With my background in physiotherapy, I thought it would be interesting to run the numbers.
Strangely, this search suggests that there’s a 2% chance of automation, completely contradicted by the poll, which returns a 15.9% chance of automation within the next two decades.
I’m definitely with the poll on this one.
Whereas the online world of marketing is ripe for disruption, replacing hands-on health workers is a far greater challenge.
And unless technology starts magically manipulating human psychology enough for us to live the kind of healthy lifestyles that prevent disease, I don’t feel we’ll possess a prophylactic solution for our most common ailments any time soon.
Indeed, the trajectory of morbidity might well be on the rise.
If other industries are overrun by automation and there’s a rise in unemployment without replenishment of jobs in emerging industries, it may result in a greater incidence of health issues across the board.
Furthermore, given the way the professional landscape has changed with the advent of knowledge work and improved standards of living, statistically, we may be in for more health problems anyway, due to the sedentary lifestyles many of us now lead.
Combine that with better healthcare intervention and the concomitant explosion of ageing populations, and it seems likely that they’ll be a greater demand on healthcare services than ever before.
So, until there’s a magic pill to prevent ageing and disease, or a cyborg to treat humans with understanding and empathy, I think health could constitute a safe and rewarding option for those considering their next career.
What about your job – thoughts, feelings, outrage? Hit me up and let me know what you think.
Otherwise, if you want to talk about the future of work, need help within your organisation or simply want to discuss robots and things, feel free to get in touch.