Whilst AI (Artificial Intelligence) is a relatively new term, it is one which is attracting great levels of interest and intrigue, at a rapid rate.
AI relates to the development of computer systems which are able to perform tasks, utilising human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.
People are now starting to acknowledge, imagine and envisage the impact that AI is having and will continue to have on our technologically driven lives. Reports differ on projections, but one eye-catching study found that half the activities that people are currently paid to perform could theoretically be automated using AI.
Clearly such advancements will have significant ramifications for the world of business and employment, though, like many workforce revolutions which have come before, humans have found ways to adapt. However, as noted in a Cpl’s ‘How Long Will Your Job Last’ white paper, ‘today’s technological revolution is very different from what happened in the industrial revolution. The pace of change is exponentially faster and its scope is much wider’.
We are undoubtedly entering a period of great change for business operations with advances in automation and artificial intelligence enabling the processing of data and algorithms to harness outputs like never before.
New research from McKinsey & Co. finds that between 75 million and 375 million workers globally will have to switch occupational categories and learn new skills in just the next 12 years because of automation and the transition to AI and robotics.
Statistics of this magnitude provide a staggering insight into projected shifts and the associated challenges for recruitment and workforce development in the coming years.
Perhaps even more startling is a finding which suggests that whilst there may be enough work to maintain full human employment until 2030 (under most scenarios), the transitions will be highly challenging—matching or even exceeding the scale of shifts out of agriculture and manufacturing that have been seen previously.
Concern is evidently growing over whether there will be enough jobs for workers, given potential automation, with the question around potential loss of jobs gaining traction.
So, should we take steps to mitigate this tide?
Well, it should be noted, automation will probably have a lesser effect on jobs which involve managing people, applying expertise and social interactions, where machines are unable to match human performance for now. Whereas, activities most susceptible to automation may include physical ones in predictable environments, such as operating machinery and preparing fast food.
That said, Bill McDermott, chief executive of SAP spoke positively about AI and its future impact on business;
“We should be optimistic. We see augmented humanity as the opportunity. It’s there to enrich our lives, not take anything away from us.”
Undoubtedly, from a recruitment perspective, AI has enormous potential when it comes to recruiting, not to cut jobs, but to accelerate the hiring process, create efficiencies and to enhance productivity.
Cpl recently highlighted how they are “pioneering the use of machine learning to help match the right candidates to the right job opportunities.” This helps Cpl react faster and boosts our competitive advantage.
AI is here to stay, with its continued growth to make for fascinating learning. Business must adapt in order to stay ahead of this ever-bending curve.