• Jennifer Warren
  • Monday, March 11, 2019
Blog Image - Future of the Workforce: Will You Stay Relevant?

One thing is certain. Change is coming, and it’s coming fast. Yes, in fact, according to Hollywood films from the 80s, the future as we foresaw it should have been here long ago. Now that it’s here, however, can the job market keep up with the pace? Can employees outrun their employers?

According to PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), a multinational professional services network, “We are living through a fundamental transformation in the way we work. Automation and 'thinking machines' are replacing human tasks, changing the skills that organisations are looking for in their people.”

What happened on the manufacturing floor 10 years ago is now expected to start rolling out into offices everywhere. Instead of robots, however, think apps and automated processes. Anything that can be automated to reduce human workload and human error will be our future.

The PwC breaks the future down for us, “The four worlds of work in 2030”, The Red World (Innovation rules), The Blue World (Corporate is king), The Green World (Companies care) and The Yellow World (Humans come first). Where will you fit in? Take their quiz and find out.

According to the World Economic Forum's The Future of Jobs Report 2018, 65% of students’ career paths are likely to be obsolete before they complete their education. That’s two-thirds of children entering the school system who will be entering careers that have yet to be created. Those are some scary statistics--change is outpacing education.

It seems the Fourth Industrial Revolution is upon us, and the impact is deepened by other factors. As reported by the World Economic Forum “The Fourth Industrial Revolution is interacting with other socio-economic and demographic factors to create a perfect storm of business model change in all industries, resulting in major disruptions to labour markets. New categories of jobs will emerge, partly or wholly displacing others. The skill sets required in both old and new occupations will change in most industries and transform how and where people work. It may also affect female and male workers differently and transform the dynamics of the industry gender gap.”

As if that weren’t enough, Society 5.0 may be right on its heels.

Preparing for the Future

Not even John Williams, Partner at PwC and the Global Leader of their People and Organisation Practice, is willing to bet on what the future may hold. We do know, however, that automation is taking the lead and that tasks requiring human interaction--in other words, those that can’t be automated--will increase in value. Think creativity, intuition, and innovation.

Even back then, Jack may have had it right--being nimble and quick is exactly the point. We need to learn to adapt quickly, remain agile, and solve problems creatively.

The good news? Overall, employment is projected to increase until 2023, with health care and social assistance leading the way by adding an additional 250,300 jobs during that time. Construction comes in second with an estimate of just under 119,000, education and training are third with 113,000, and professional, scientific, and technical services job projections are in at just over 106,000.

Want to learn how to prepare yourself? Consider visiting the Future of Work Summit.