15th August 2023

The Digital Future of Jobs

Elena VavilovMarketing Manager
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The rapid pace of technological advancement is reshaping the global labour market. With the World Economic Forum's latest “Future of Jobs Report 2023” offering a deep dive into the topic, there are several pivotal findings to consider.

In the era of accelerated high-tech evolution, few things have garnered as much attention and speculation as the future of jobs. The ever-expanding realm of digital innovation has set the stage for monumental shifts in the international employment landscape. Companies are increasingly intertwining their operations with cutting-edge technology, whether it is through AI transformation, big data, cloud computing, or business automation. 

But with this comes a pressing question: What does it mean for the worldwide workforce and, more importantly, for you?

Embracing the Digital Era

The World Economic Forum, always at the forefront of universal trends, has rolled out its “Future of Jobs Report 2023”, providing a comprehensive look into the next chapter of employment over the next five years. From the revolutionary impact of AI features to the pivotal role of automation in shaping the employment market, this release is an invaluable resource for anyone aiming to stay ahead in the modern professional world.

So, if you have ever wondered how emerging technologies might shape your professional future, or if you are a business leader pondering over the next strategic move, dive into our distilled insights from the WEF's research. It promises not just a glimpse into the coming years but a roadmap to navigate the intertwined realms of technology and employment.

The catalysts of change: AI and green transition

The report reveals several divergent global job market conclusions. High-income countries experience tight labour fields, while unemployment is on the rise in low to lower-middle-income countries, especially post-COVID-19. Women and those with basic education are particularly affected.

The most important factors driving business innovation are technology adoption, green investments, and the incorporation of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) standards.

Over 85% of the surveyed organisations recognise technology integration, especially digital transformation, as the primary force behind business evolution. New tech trends such as big data, cloud computing, and AI feature prominently in organisational strategies for the next 5 years. In fact, these tech solutions are at the forefront of anticipated job creation.

Investments driving the green transition stand out as potent job creators. Localising supply chains also promotes job growth, suggesting a move towards more sustainable and community-focused corporate models.

The dual impact of tech advancement on the labour market

While modern tech is heralded as a beacon of job growth, there are concerns.

Over half of the organisations foresee job creation due to the digital revolution, but a fifth predicts job displacement, highlighting the need for adaptability. This underscores the pressing necessity for flexibility and resilience in our ever-evolving computerised age. 

This dual phenomenon calls for a proactive approach to continuous learning and skill acquisition, ensuring that the workforce remains relevant and robust in the face of technological shifts.

Big analytics and AI technology are not mere buzzwords; over 75% of businesses plan on adopting these in the coming years. Digital platforms and apps are set to be the most wanted technologies, with a whopping 86% of companies planning to integrate them by 2027.

Despite the hype around automation, enterprises are embracing it at a slower pace than anticipated. By 2027, only 42% of business tasks are expected to be automated. Interestingly, while tasks requiring reasoning are becoming more automatable, humans still have the edge in communication and coordination.

What is next for the global job market?

There is a significant labour force evolution projected in the coming five years based on WEF’s report. Approximately 23% of roles are anticipated to transform by the year 2027. This entails the creation of 69 million new positions while, concurrently, 83 million old ones will be phased out.

Roles like AI and Machine Learning Specialists are rapidly growing. In terms of specialties, the domains witnessing the fastest expansion include Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Specialists, Sustainability Experts, Business Intelligence Analysts, and Information Security Professionals. On a broader scale, sectors such as education, agriculture, and digital commerce are predicted to experience the most substantial absolute growth.

On the other hand, digitalisation spells a decline in jobs in clerical domains like Bank Tellers, Postal Service Clerks, and Data Entry Clerks.

It is necessary to note and observe potential challenges: a sluggish economic trajectory, persistent supply shortages, and looming inflation are among the most significant threats to career stability.

Analytical and creative thinking, articulate communication, and intelligent problem-solving - attributes where humans significantly outshine AI - top the chart of essential skills in 2023. There's an increasing emphasis on cognitive skills, technology literacy, and self-efficacy skills. Recognising the power of AI, businesses are placing strategic importance on skills such as robotics, machine learning, and data analysis and processing.

Companies anticipate that 44% of worker skills will face disruption in the next half-decade. Training initiatives, especially in analytical thinking, AI, and big data, are deemed essential.

Organisations are confident in training their existing workforce but are sceptical about the availability of external talent.** Improving expertise progression, offering competitive wages, and underlining in-house training** are top strategies to bridge this gap.

Companies are prioritising Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) programs focusing on women (79%), youth under 25 (68%), and those with disabilities (51%), pointing out a move towards a more inclusive corporate culture.

There is a strong demand for government intervention. 45% of enterprises think that skill training funded by the government is crucial for linking talent to job opportunities, highlighting the connection between government policies and corporate efforts.

As the world stands at the cusp of significant business automation and technology adoption, it is imperative to recognise and harness the positive potential of this digital transformation. We remain hopeful and enthusiastic about the possibilities that lie ahead. Whether it's the power of big data, the promise of AI technology, or the broader applications of cloud computing, the onus is on businesses and individuals to adapt, upskill, and evolve.

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