The Future of Work?My daughter, Molly, (the Google Home mini expert) has recently completed her GCSE mock exams. For those who don't know, the GCSE or General Certificate of Secondary Education is a set of exams taken in England, Wales, Northern Ireland by children ages 15-16 and are the final exams before leaving high school. After leaving school next year, Molly will be going to a 6th form college where she will have to decide which 3 subjects she wishes to study for her A-levels, the qualifications required before attending a University.
Why do I mention this?
Well, a few months ago we had to make the decision on these 3 subjects, which in turn will likely set her on a potential career path. This got me thinking about the future of work, and what jobs our kids may be doing in this future, and which once coveted jobs are likely to disappear?
With the rise of Artifical Intelligence (AI), and in particular Machine Learning (ML), "robots" and other new technologies the world is likely to look very different over the next 5 to 10 years. The University of Oxford, Oxford Martin School researchers have estimated that 47 percent of U.S. jobs could be automated within the next two decades. From this study, there are several occupational groups, which surprisingly, have been estimated to be at the highest risk of automation. Skills that would once have given individuals a career for life are now slowly declining as business owners start looking at how today's technology can improve the efficiency within their organisations. So my advice to Molly and other school leavers, who wish to succeed in this new world, is that they should ideally no longer be training for a specific career but should instead be equipping themselves with general STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) skills, while also throwing in some creativity subjects such as music, drama or art. Those individuals who have just started out in the workplace should evaluate what they currently bring to a business, and where possible move up the value chain.