Is it time to dust off your resume?
The next Industrial Revolution is here again and just like previous revolutions, people have one important question: Will AI be taking my job? It’s a valid question. We all crave stability during this time of change. You want to be sure your livelihood is not in danger.
AI is better at handling certain jobs.
The easiest answer I can give is, well kind of. AI will be taking jobs, that much is true. Just like the previous revolutions, humans are going to be replaced by something that can do the job better and faster. This isn’t necessarily to say humans are subpar, it’s simply the truth. There are certain tasks that robots can perform better. Machines are better equipped to handle computing tasks and are not limited by fatigue like humans are. However, there are certain jobs that only humans can perform. AI will augment human performance. I like to equate AI to a screwdriver. Sure, you can sit there for hours trying to get a screw in a wall with your bare hands, but that’s incredibly time-consuming and painful. You’d much rather use something specifically designed to get the job done, right? That’s AI. As far as data entry goes, humans get tired and are prone to making mistakes. AI is ideal for doing data entry jobs because computers work quickly and accurately. Will some jobs be taken by AI? Yes. There’s a ‘but,’ here, though.
What makes humans different?
Robots and AI can not be like humans. Humans are complex creatures. We empathize, have ethics, morals, and above all, we create. Humans are the only creatures that can conceptualize something and bring it to life. Imagination plays a big part in this, and as of now, AI does not have the capability to imagine. Creativity and imagination are traits only we have. Currently, jobs that utilize these traits will not and can never be taken by robots.
AI will create new jobs.
In addition, with AI replacing jobs, more jobs will be created. AI and robots need to be managed. Someone will have to fix them when they are broken and correct them when they make mistakes. Someone will also have to create new AI algorithms and robots to do new jobs. There are countless other needs that will prompt the creation of new jobs. Predictions range and industries vary, but all agree: AI will create more jobs than it replaces, sometimes even double than those replaced. Forbes estimates that by 2022, 75 million jobs will be taken, but 133 million will be produced. That’s 58 million new jobs. Many companies, like Amazon, plan to educate their displaced employees into higher positions, making the exhausting job search process unnecessary. Humans are also extremely adaptable. This isn’t the first big societal change we’ve encountered, and it most certainly won’t be the last. Despite that, we’ve persevered for thousands of years. There’s still plenty to be done that only we are equipped to do.
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Written by: Hannah Kunz
January 26th, 2021