The blurring of technical and non-technical jobs signals a dramatic shift for the entire workforce and will change the basic structure and nature of work. In the past, the narrative was that STEM jobs offered a more lucrative career path. Now, every job is a STEM job, from brick laying and nursing to radiology and house painting. You will be hard pressed to find a job in the coming decades that won’t work with a robot or AI or even have one as a manager.
One of the fastest-growing areas, in fact, is human robot interaction and the development of collaborative robots known as co-bots. The point being, humans lucky enough to avoid getting displaced by an AI-powered robot will still need to demonstrate the ability to work alongside or under it. As with past industrial revolutions, the future of work – also known as “industry 4.0” – is being driven by technology disruption in the form of automation, big data, internet of things, artificial intelligence, blockchain, drones and 5G. Business leaders anticipate that a skills mismatch will rapidly emerge in the next few years, particularly relative to automation and artificial intelligence.
While the application of these technologies will be more pronounced in certain sectors, one thing is certain: No industry will be immune. Technical fluency is now a baseline qualification, and those without it risk being left behind.