All IDCA News

By Loading

1 May 2023

Share on social media:

Strong Human Element Remains in Work Despite Automation, WEF Report Finds

Digitalization and automation will eliminate 26 million clerical, cashier, and data entry jobs by 2027, according to the latest Future of Jobs report from the World Economic Forum. The annual report surveys more than 800 companies in 45 countries to encompass 673 million jobs across economies, while covering an additional 2 billion “informal” jobs worldwide. The decline in some jobs is compensated partially by growth in specialized work in e-commerce, digital transformation, and digital marketing and strategy, the report states.

The report contrasts what it terms the “tight” labor markets of high-income countries with higher unemployment post-Covid throughout most of the developing world. It also describes a decline in real wages “as a result of an ongoing cost-of-living crisis,” and “changing worker expectations and concerns about the quality of work” globally.

The report finds that 85% of people surveyed say an increased adoption of “new and frontier technologies” will drive transformation in their organizations, with a broader application of ESG standards. A greening of businesses will result specifically in more localized supply chains, while adaptation of climate change is seen as a net job creator. More than 75% of companies surveyed are “looking to adopt” cloud computing, big data initiatives, and more AI, the report finds.

The Human Element Remains
Regarding automation, despite the anticipated lob losses and migration, the report says it found that “the human-machine frontier has shifted, with businesses introducing automation into their operations at a slower pace than previously anticipated.” The survey data shows that 34% of business-related tasks are performed by machines today, up only 1 percentage point from three years ago, contradicting a 2020 survey that estimated this percentage reaching 47% by now.

Perhaps related to that result, the report states that “analytical and creative thinking remain the most important skills for workers in 2023. Analytical thinking is considered a core skill by more companies than any other skill and constitutes, on average, 9% of the core skills reported by companies. Creative thinking, another cognitive skill, ranks second, ahead of resilience, motivation, and curiousity about lifelong learning.”

Graphic from the World Economic Forum.

Follow us on social media: