Which professions will disappear
According to the World Economic Forum, by 2025, 85 million people will lose their jobs due to automation. In 2020, machines performed only 33% of work processes, but in five years this figure will reach 47%. At the same time, not everyone acknowledges these trends — in 2015, 40% of young people in Australia received a profession that will be partially automated by 2025.
What professions will robots replace
Most likely, a robot will not completely replace a person in any area. Artificial intelligence is not trying to crowd out workers and take their place. On the contrary, technology helps employees complete certain tasks faster and more efficiently — only repetitive or dangerous work is automated. Even if some complex operations are performed by artificial intelligence, a person will still have to accept and correct its work.
In this list, we have collected the professions, the demand for which has been falling in recent years. This means that jobs are being cut and some processes are being automated. Many professionals will have to undergo retraining or advanced training in order to maintain a place in the company.
Experts say that more and more people prefer a spontaneous vacation, rather than a well-planned one. There is a scientific explanation for this — if a person makes a travel plan, then the brain perceives it as work. Therefore, we get more pleasure if we make an unexpected decision to leave. The Internet offers an abundance of services that provide the client with the desired travel option for free and quickly. And the customer makes a purchase decision based on reviews, which are also published in the public domain.
But there will be exceptions. A travel agent is compared to a psychologist who empathizes and feels what the buyer needs at the moment. Moreover, people like to think that they are under the reliable protection of an expert who will save them money and time. Experienced travel agents know that it is impossible to prepare a high-quality tour on their own in two to three hours. It will take more than 20 hours to take into account all the nuances (which even the most complex program cannot do).
And yet, during a pandemic, it is difficult to make any predictions — it is not clear when people will again begin going on vacations to another country. Although even workers in the field agree that sooner or later this profession will transform. More companies will go online, the number of agencies will decrease, and there will be no room for low-skill specialists.
Before the next technological revolution happens and all cars become unmanned, couriers will change first. Robots and drones will replace humans. The developers believe that machines will be able to choose the optimal routes and complete the tasks faster than a person. In the near future, such machines will be lightweight robots with a maximum speed of 40 kilometers per hour.
This idea may seem unrealizable, but in 2020, a tech startup Nuro has already launched a robot that delivers products without human intervention. The mass launch of such machines, however, will require lengthy negotiations with the state administrations and will take a lot of red tape-cutting.
Another company, Starship Technologies, has launched compact robots that drive along the sidewalk next to pedestrians. Now they exist in several cities in the United States, but the developers have a long way of improving them ahead. Sometimes automated delivery vehicles bump into passers-by or animals, but this shortcoming will be corrected in the coming years.
Cooks in the fast-food industry
There is an 81% chance that employees in fast food chains will be replaced by robots. This year already, the American chains White Castle and KFC are testing a robot chef. So far, machines have learned to make burgers, fries, and pizza. This will allow the companies’ outlets to operate 24/7 and allow employees to devote more time to disinfecting desks and ensuring safety during the pandemic.
Robot developers believe that automation frees people from hazardous and tedious work, rather than costing them their jobs. By the way, partial robotization will take place not only in fast food. The company Chowbotics has developed a salad robot Sally, that can cook 65 cups of salad a day when fully loaded. In California, hospitals and colleges have already bought about 200 units of Sally.
Some researchers argue that the profession of an accountant is in danger of disappearing. There is still no consensus on this matter. Most likely, only the work of low-skilled employees will get automated, whereas senior accountants will always be needed. Basic tasks (bank reconciliations, risk assessment, checking accounts) will be performed by artificial intelligence, and more responsible ones will be performed by humans.
But even if technologies can solve problems of increased complexity, the results of these calculations should be checked by an accountant. The specialists themselves believe that there is a lot of human element in their profession, which the program cannot cope with. In the work of an accountant, the role emotions play is very important. Clients often need support and confidence that they are served by a professional who can solve even the most complex problems.
Security guard and police officer
So far, the idea of replacing guards or bodyguards with robots is questionable. A single mistake in the code can be very expensive, and past experiments to create the perfect machine for the job have been unsuccessful. But in the future, experts predict technologies that will make customers feel safe, even if they are not protected by a living person. Moreover, the robots don’t need either rest or medical insurance. This saves the company a lot of money.
Some believe that robots will be able to patrol the streets and guard critical facilities very soon. The American startup Knightscope has released its first models. They are 167 centimeters tall and weigh about 180 kilograms. The developers promise four built-in cameras that provide a 360-degree view, GPS, and an alarm system. The company reports that thanks to their robots, crimes in the area have decreased by 46%. However, not everything is so simple — the system sometimes makes mistakes. In 2017, such a robot voluntarily entered the fountain bowl of a business center in the United States and drowned itself.
What professions will never go away
- Doctor. Robots help to carry out complex operations, structure data, or diagnose diseases using augmented and virtual reality. But in the medical profession, it is important to interact with the patient and give honest answers to health questions, sometimes ethically hard ones. This is especially important for health professionals in the field of mental health. Robots don’t have emotions or people’s skills, so they can’t become independent doctors.
- Social worker. Such a specialist works with vulnerable groups (orphans, disabled people, retirees, victims of violence) who need support and sympathy. They do highly emotional work by empathizing and supporting clients. You can't teach a robot to do this either.
- Professional sportsman. Already, championships between robots are being held, but they are not as spectacular as the usual ones. People love sports competitions for the emotions and empathy they invoke, and with machines, sports lose their zest.
- Writer. Imagination and emotional experience play an important role in the writer’s profession. You have to constantly come up with something new, and you can't teach a robot to do that. The works made by a machine can only consist of combinations of extracts that were given to it for study.
- Clergyman. Religion is not based on data or logical inferences. Its main component is sincere faith, empathy, and love. A person expects from a clergyman a deep conversation and connection with higher forces. And a robot cannot inspire, direct, or give spiritual advice.
How to choose a profession
If you decide to change your profession or are just choosing your first one, we advise you to read our article on career guidance. There you will find sites that will help you decide on the specialty, as well as common mistakes and tips.
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