Is your career safe from automation?

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Imagine yourself ten years ago believing that we’re on the edge of having driverless cars on the roads, and that we already have robot trains? It might not seem amazing right now, but sometimes we need to think back to the past to see how amazing automation really is.

Automation has some pretty exciting things in store for us, but what about the young professionals of the future like you, will you be able to avoid being automated?

Are you on track to be automated?

This might sound like a silly question to ask, but there are actually some pretty startling statistics around automation[1]:

  • 58% of students aged under 25 years in Australia are enrolled in fields of study that will be radically affected by automation in the next 10-15 years.
  • If we focus just on VET students, the proportion of students being trained in the at-risk occupations rises to 71%.

Automation is already impacting these industries:

  • Accounting: Compliance and processing work is being done by computer programs and cloud software.
  • Customer Service: Many customer interactions are being done by automation and artificial intelligence software.
  • Engineering: Tasks like CAD tracing are being done by software.
  • Finance: Complex analytical tasks are being done by machine learning and other sophisticated algorithms.
  • IT: Helpdesk work is being dramatically reduced by managed service providers who aggregate IT support needs for hundreds of thousands of devices and users.
  • Manufacturing: Assembly lines in factories are being replaced by robots.
  • Marketing: Lead generation, nurturing and market research is being done by marketing automation software.

Automation has changed your game plan

No matter your industry, automation is significantly changing, if not replacing the jobs that you might have been able to rely on in the past to make a start to your career. This means that the less experience you have, the more difficult automation might make things for you.

Have you thought about whether you’re headed into a career where your skills are going to be needed more or less?

If you’re able to use automation to perform your job more efficiently, automation might present an opportunity to you.

If the work you need to do can be automated and you’re not able to do an additional set of tasks which add value, automation might present a threat to you.

Use your human advantage

There are skills that aren’t currently at risk of automation, they are the things that make you uniquely human. If you can start to understand what these things are, they can set you apart as a professional, and also make you safe from having your job automated.

Every field needs these skills, and automation is not reducing their demand:

  • Critical thinking
  • Creativity
  • Digital literacy
  • Organisational skills
  • Presentation skills
  • Problem solving

You might be interested to learn something about these kinds of skills, they are:

  • Fairly safe from being replaced by automation.
  • Universally important across every professional field.
  • Increasing in their demand year after year.

Automation will impact the shape of the career you think you are entering, there is no field that is immune from it. The important thing to remember is that there are skills like above that you’ll also need, that aren’t reducing in demand at all. These skills are on track to become even more important for your career, even if you aren’t being taught them in the classroom.

Use technology to your advantage

The fact of technology does not have to be a bad thing for your career, but rather it should serve as a reminder of the importance for you to innovate yourself all the time. If you’d like to learn more about the kinds of skills that will increase the demand for you within today’s economy, then check out our leadership course Learn Lead Thrive.

This communication skills and leadership program will help you develop the kinds of skills that are becoming even more important for the success of young professionals like you.