As four specific technological advances—ubiquitous high-speed mobile internet; artificial intelligence; widespread adoption of big data analytics; and cloud technology are set to dominate the 2018–2022 period, nearly 50 percent of companies expect that automation will lead to some reduction in their full-time workforce by 2022, based on the job profiles of their employee base today. However, 38 percent of businesses surveyed expect to extend their workforce to new productivity-enhancing roles, and more than a quarter expect automation to lead to the creation of new roles in their enterprise.
The roles that are set to experience increasing demand in the period up to 2022 include Data Analysts and Scientists, Software and Applications Developers, and E-commerce and Social Media Specialists, roles that are significantly based on and enhanced by the use of technology.
While in 2018, an average of 71 percent of total task hours across the 12 industries covered in the report are performed by humans, by 2022 this average is expected to shift to 58 percent task hours performed by humans and 42 percent by machines.
For instance, by 2022, 62 percent of the organization’s information and data processing and information search and transmission tasks will be performed by machines. Even the tasks like communicating and interacting (23 percent); coordinating, developing, managing and advising (20 percent); as well as reasoning and decision-making (18 percent) will begin to be automated (30 percent, 29 percent, and 27 percent respectively).
However, on the other hand, the roles that leverage distinctively ‘human’ skills, such as Customer Service Workers, Sales and Marketing Professionals, Training and Development, People and Culture, and Organizational Development Specialists, as well as Innovation Managers, will experience a growth in demand.
Further, the report has also identified an accelerating demand for a variety of wholly new specialist roles related to understanding and leveraging the latest emerging technologies, such as, AI and Machine Learning Specialists, Big Data Specialists, Process Automation Experts, Information Security Analysts, User Experience and Human-Machine Interaction Designers, Robotics Engineers, and Blockchain Specialists.
As the companies will seek to harness new and emerging technologies and expand their adoption of big data analytics, cloud computing, machine learning and augmented and virtual reality, by 2022, the skills required to perform most jobs will also shift significantly.
As per the WEF report, employers indicate that they are set to prioritize and focus their re- and upskilling efforts on employees currently performing high-value roles. Companies highlight three future strategies to manage the skills gaps widened by the adoption of new technologies– They expect to hire wholly new permanent staff already possessing skills relevant to new technologies; seek to automate the work tasks concerned completely; and retrain existing employees.
While companies will continue to focus on their skilling and development strategies, a mindset of agile learning will also be needed on the part of workers as they shift from the routines and limits of today’s jobs to new, previously unimagined futures.
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You can read the full report here: http://reports.weforum.org/future-of-jobs-2018/key-findings/