The robot revolution has begun, and it seems we may have become our own worse enemy when it comes to technology. As we discover technological advances to help improve productivity, we may have also caused long term problems for employees. In recent years we have been able to see with our own eyes where supermarkets and shops have started changing, we now have ‘self-service’ and some petrol stations are now man-less with a ‘pay at the pump’ service. This has sparked fear among many that their job may be at risk of being taken over by a robot.
Although some jobs are replaceable this is not true for every position. “The good news is that the robots may not be coming for as many of us as you might assume. A new report by the Brookings Institution, analysing data from sources including consultancy McKinsey, concludes that in the US, just half a percent of the workforce – about 740,000 people – are in roles which could be fully replaced by machines”.
In reality, the robot revolution is about automation and speeding up the process of work, it’s about making jobs more efficient. “In one in four jobs, 70pc of work could potentially be automated”. Technological advances have also been kind to many work sectors, people with skills such as computer programming have only benefited from the technology boom and even created more jobs for people. “Analysis suggest that technology provides employment for 11.5m workers in the USA and more than two million in the UK”.
It is more than likely that your job is completely safe, but some reports have suggested you can work out how likely you are to be replaced by a robot by looking at a few important factors including gender, age, education and ethnicity.
“Men are more likely than women to work in vulnerable sectors. Men work in roles which are on average 43pc open to being automated, this drops to 40pc for female workers”. Reports suggest this is because females have more of a face to face job role such as working in healthcare and this relies on human interaction, therefore they are less likely to be replaced.
Your education is also an important factor to consider, “those who did not finish high school are in roles which have an automation potential of 54pc on average, while for those with a graduate degree it’s just 25pc”. It has also been revealed that currently the younger generation is more likely to be replaced as they work in sectors such as food or retail and these can become automated.
How do you feel about these recent findings? Do you think you could be replaced by a robot?
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