In the 2020 report of the World Economic Forum on the future of work, it is indicated that, by 2025.
some 85 million jobs can be replaced by machines, but that 97 million will also emerge adapted to this new machine-human configuration.
Thus, rather than establishing a limitation of jobs, it seems that what can really be expected is a true transformation of the labor sector.
The world is increasingly disruptive and, especially after the 2020 pandemic, the digital adoption process has accelerated.
This digital adoption has generated a great impact in the workplace, since it has promoted digitization to cover the new social realities through new paths and solutions. At the moment when uncertainty is generated in society, we must establish a labor framework that benefits all parties involved: citizens, companies and administration.
We can see that, throughout history, the end of work has been announced on many occasions when what ended up happening is that it was modified and adapted to the social and economic reality of the moment. It is also what is happening now and what heralds important social changes .
But this is nothing more than an accelerating trend: as early as 2016, the World Economic Forum noted that more than half of the people who were studying at that time would end up working in jobs that did not yet exist .
It is not a surprise that the labor market has a speed and capacity for change much higher than the educational one, leaving behind training focused on knowledge and rigid training content. Professional careers that include skills linked to innovation and the ability to adapt and are capable of operating in digital environments will move away from that obsolescence.
Polarization of work
Technology will undoubtedly be an important niche for new jobs and will improve the quality of some of the existing ones, while jobs that are dangerous or repetitive will be automated . We will move to a polarized model in which, on the one hand, we will have more qualified jobs and, on the other, jobs related to service activities, with a low or medium need for qualification.
Within the qualified jobs we can see: information security analysts, Internet of Things (IoT) specialists or process automation specialists, among others. On the other hand, the jobs will be, for example, sales or content production.
Technology will undoubtedly be an important niche for new jobs and will improve the quality of existing ones.
Men and machines: new working couple
In the 2020 report of the World Economic Forum on the future of work, it is indicated that, by 2025, some 85 million jobs can be replaced by machines, but that 97 million will also emerge adapted to this new machine-human configuration. Thus, rather than establishing a limitation of jobs, it seems that what can really be expected is a true transformation of the labor sector.
With the incursion of machines, routine, dangerous or process acceleration jobs will be automated and, on the other hand, new jobs will be generated for their design, creation, management and supervision. Therefore, if the global trend is towards technology, thinking that computer scientists should be inserted in all labor sectors is illogical, as we are currently seeing.
Technological skills are being added to traditional professions so that they are capable of operating in digital environments. For example, a doctor who can operate with a robot, a police officer who monitors through a drone, or a neighborhood textile store that is capable of selling online .
In 2017, the consulting firm McKinsey & Company proposed as a possible scenario that, in 2030, between 75 and 375 million workers would have to change their professional categories . For this, it will be necessary to acquire a higher educational level or develop social and emotional skills of creativity, critical thinking, etc. In short, skills that are difficult to automate.
This is also reflected in other reports, such as the 2020 World Economic Forum, which indicates that skills such as critical thinking, problem solving, stress tolerance, resilience and flexibility will become extremely important for companies.
These types of skills give workers an advantage over technology, since they are necessary for job development and are fundamentally human and difficult to replicate by machines. Therefore, it is these skills that we must promote and not try to imitate or beat technology in more automatable tasks. The improvement of skills and professional recycling are gaining importance and are becoming fundamental for adapting to the new labor change .
We will not change people for robots, we will change our way of working
We are facing the fourth industrial revolution , which is transforming society and the global economy and is characterized by more affordable and smaller technology, a ubiquitous internet, artificial intelligence and machine learning . But this complex, disruptive and eminently technological scenario requires, and will require, new jobs . Some already exist (artificial intelligence specialists, e-commerce platform developers), others are hardly imaginable without a prospective study.
The distribution of these technologization processes will not be homogeneous neither by sector nor geographically and, consequently, neither will that of the jobs. Rather than robots replacing humans, it seems that the trend will be for humans to work with robots. In other words: we will change the way we work.
This idea includes our way of relating to work and our consideration of it. Other global trends, not necessarily technological, include project work, results orientation and environmental awareness, among others.
Employees are people and they suffer from human problems such as burnout or job frustration . This can lead to tendencies to quit jobs , even in times of uncertainty.
The only trend that seems constant in a changing work scenario is its clear link with what it feeds on: people.
Consequently, individually considering our job projection, taking into account the technological and social megatrends, will place us in a better position in the future labor market. In turn, entrepreneurs and human resources managers should consider these megatrends in the management of their teams, assuming that, above all, they are people .