One of the main concerns regarding the new industrial revolution is the replacement of many workers and manufacturing jobs by new technologies like AI, robotics, etc. In short: Yes, that is going to happen. But that’s not the end of it. These technologies will displace several tasks and drastically optimize business processes, but new capabilities are being required and new will keep being required, such as Tech development, database architects, data analysts, business analysts, digital factory operators, and many others. Companies now have to reshape their organizations to take full advantage of these new ways of work empowered by new technologies.
Let’s start with the tough part, there will be many jobs that will be replaced by some sort of technology (as it has happened throughout human history). Many will still be part of automation technologies as any physical-mechanical process is done better and, in many cases, cheaper by machines. A second wave of this is currently happening with high speed, low-cost cloud computing. Many planning semi-methodical processes are currently being replaced by smart algorithms, Artificial Intelligence, and machine learning technologies. Some of these jobs can be determined around quality control and supply chain planning: From dynamic demand forecasting to production scheduling to real-time distribution optimization and of course, autonomous trucks.
While the probability of these jobs being taken by computers is extremely high, many new jobs are currently developing in the market. Most of these new highly-demanded positions are a consequence of the stated new digital capabilities. Skills like data analysis, data architecture design, connectivity technician, cloud technician, and of course, tech developers. It is important to state that these new jobs will be extremely demanded therefore well paid.
The need for these new technical jobs is rising at a faster pace than universities and technical schools are capable of graduating students. Thus, to cover all these new needs, companies are no longer looking for school degrees but skills. The new digital world may have fewer mechanical opportunities, but it replaces them with better-paid opportunities.