MDB Insight Blog


What Does AI and Technology Mean for Your Workforce?

As technology and artificial intelligence (AI) continue to develop and disrupt the both the marketplace and the employment landscape, some industries will be harder hit than others. Though some jobs will be replaced with machines and robots that better complete repeatable tasks, many other jobs will emerge to support the new technology.

How AI and Technology Will Change the Landscape

According to a report by Gartner, a US market research firm, AI will create more jobs than it eliminates by 2020: 1.8 million jobs will be eliminated, while 2.3 million will be created. Certain industries will continue to see demand for jobs over the next couple of years, including healthcare, education, and the public sector. Traditional roles within manufacturing will be among the hardest hit. 

AI will be used to automate and complete repeatable tasks within industries, such as conducting large numbers of observations, or making decisions based on analyzed patterns. A recent article in Forbes explains that often it isn’t the entire job that will be replaced, but certain tasks that can be done by a machine.

Technology and automation are already impacting jobs on assembly lines, at checkout counters, and in the retail space, as more people purchase items online. Examples of jobs that will change dramatically with the further integration of AI include:

  • Concierges
  • Brokerage clerks
  • Credit authorizers
  • Mechanical drafters. 

Less routine work that requires social skills, complex problem solving ability, or creativity will not be replaced. In fact, AI will be used to assist humans in the workplace over the coming years. It is predicted that one in five people will work in situations that are AI-augmented, where the combination of person and machine is much more effective than either on its own.

AI-augmented work can be a win-win for employees and employers because tasks are completed efficiently with fewer mistakes, saving money and time. Repetitive and boring tasks will no longer be required of personnel, allowing them to focus on their strengths and enjoy more challenging and engaging daily work.

How Workforce Development Professionals Can Help

nullWorkforce development professionals can help support this changing landscape in two key areas:

1. Support Technology-Based Education and Training

The more that prospective employees are exposed to the benefits of AI and technology throughout their training, the more comfortable they will be entering this new landscape. In addition, there will be many new jobs that arise as a result of emerging technology. This means that education in engineering, robotics, information technology, programming, and the skilled trades will need to expand appropriately. 

Working with local employers and educational institutions to promote and tailor programs to include and support AI and technology will ensure a smooth transition. Supplemental training programs for those already in the workforce can be facilitated by your local offices.

2. Emphasize Skills Over Experience to Meet Labour Demand

In addition to helping prepare the future workforce for the changing landscape, current workers who are temporarily displaced will need support in finding new jobs. Emphasizing skills over specific industry experience or training is key.

For example, robots and technology will likely replace welders on an assembly line, but these technically skilled workers could be employed in other industries. A welder could repair other machinery or robots within a high-tech facility. They could transfer their skills in metallurgy, math, and science into helping set up the optimum assembly line, or spend more of their time on material selection and design, instead of on welding tasks.

Real-time data is available to help you create long-term strategies to address the jobs that will be affected by AI and technology. The Regional Labour Demand and Supply Reporting SystemTM can even provide local data on particular skills available in the labour market, so that you can work to support skills transfer to increase employment.

Use Regional Data to Ease the Workforce Transition

Though the rise of technology in the workforce will be a net positive in terms of job creation re will still be displaced employees. Get the exact localized data you need to help support your workforce development plans and ease the transition for your community over the next few years. 

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