Automation creates opportunities for efficiency, but businesses who embrace it may be shrinking employment opportunities in their industries.
Increased productivity and revenue for some companies may mean layoffs for lower level employees. According to studies, automation will effectively eliminate almost 6% of all U.S. jobs within a period of five years.
Robots in the Workforce
Automation threatens the job security of not only lower waged workers, but the jobs of knowledge based and highly skilled employees as well. Accounting and legal industries could see 39% of jobs eliminated over a 10-year period due to automation.
While new technology shouldn’t be feared, the consequences of automation need to be addressed.
As automation continues to spread throughout the working world, it’s important to understand which industries are most susceptible to job loss.
Claims Representatives and Insurance Underwriters
Automation has already been affecting the insurance industry. As more companies are introducing artificial intelligence into their businesses, the employees that once had invaluable positions in their companies are now finding themselves out of work. The internet alone is a huge help with a lot of our daily work, whether it’s drawing ideas or learning from past examples.
This kind of technology works to interpret and analyze videos, audio, images, and text more efficiently than any human would be able to. While this type of automation is great for business, it may spell termination for several employees.
Companies are more capable than ever of being able to track and report work progress digitally. Middle management will become less prominent as these systems continue to be built out. There will be no need to have somebody report sales numbers or work progress to upper management when software can do it for them.
The future of project management and task delegation is increasingly moving to the digital realm.
Bankers and Tellers
As ATMs were first introduced, bank workers grew weary that automation would replace them. In recent years, smartphone apps have made the need for tellers and representatives even less necessary.
In the coming years, it’s speculated that automation will completely eliminate the need for any employees in the banking world. New systems and artificial intelligence are already being put into place to handle processing loans, opening accounts and conducting transactions, ultimately making the bank teller obsolete.
Companies have long since used financial analysts to identify trends and help institutions plan their portfolios. With the assistance of AI, financial analysts are unnecessary. Today’s software works at record speed to identify and analyze financial trends that will predict how the market is moving. As technology continues to improve, companies often feel more confident trusting their financial information and data with systems that are free of human error.
Payroll and AP Departments
Lower-level employees in accounts payable will have a tough time hanging around as AP and invoicing automation technology sweeps across the industry. These systems decrease time spent on invoices and eliminate the possibility of human error. You probably can’t ever replace all employees, but many businesses may start scaling down these departments as technology becomes more efficient.
Once believed to be a job requiring human hands, the work of a day laborer can now be accomplished with the use of automation. With the likes of robotic bricklaying machines, automated bulldozers, and more, construction workers are likely to see most of their positions taken by artificial intelligent machines.
Stockists and Inventory Managers
Simple tasks, like stocking the aisles of a grocery store, will be replaced by robots. These types of robots work to audit shelves, replace out of stock items, fix pricing errors, and organize products.
Stores that implement this sort of automation to replace the work of human employees will ultimately save millions. There is even software that can help with your digital inventory. Data backing and protection are more important than ever, and software is beginning to do the job that webmasters and IT professionals used to be responsible for.
Life on the farm may be as human as it gets in the working world, but the likes of artificially intelligent machines are threatening the livelihood of farmers as well. Jobs like feeding chickens and milking cows are likely to be taken over by automated machines. Machines like this will cost millions of farmers their jobs, saving farms money, but leaving dedicated farmers without work.
The taxi industry has already taken a toll with the introduction of Lyft and Uber, but many taxi drivers may end up unemployed completely. Automated vehicles are already on the market and are being developed for use a self-driving taxis. In countries like Singapore, these driverless cars are already taking to the streets, costing the traditional taxi driver their career.
Manufacturing jobs have long been a guarantee for people searching for work. However, with the addition of automated machinery, the human workers in the manufacturing industry will be threatened.
As technology improves, manufacturing companies believe that whatever humans may be able to do, machines can do better and more cost effectively. This can be very concerning to hear.
Writers and Journalists
Writing and journalism are jobs that may soon be facing an automation takeover.
With certain software, new and intelligent content can easily be developed without the need of human writers. In many industries that deal with a significant amount of statistics and data, using robots and automated software has become quite commonplace.
As technology continues to develop interfaces that can accurately replicate the way a person feels, thinks, and writes, the role of the writer may be taken over by robot journalists.
This is Just the Beginning
As technology presses on and automation makes it way to every industry on earth, it may be difficult for anyone to find work in the future. When the need for human skills can be effectively replaced by artificial intelligence, there isn’t much left to but let the machines rule.