Major change to global jobs framework seen in next 5 years
May 23, 2023171 views0 comments
BY BEN EGUZOZIE
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The global jobs framework is bound to significantly change over the next five years to 2027, with a quarter of new jobs, 69 million or 23 percent expected to come on stream during the period, whereas another 83 million jobs will be eliminated, according to data from ‘The Future of Jobs Report 2023’.
The report suggests that globally jobs are expected to change through growth of 10.2 percent and decline of 12.3 percent.
According to the estimates from 803 companies surveyed for the report, employers anticipate 69 million new jobs to be created, and 83 million eliminated among the 673 million jobs corresponding to the dataset, a net decrease of 14 million jobs, or two percent of current employment.
The Future of Jobs Report maps the jobs and skills of the future, tracking the pace of change and it is in its fourth edition after it was first launched in 2016. It aims to analyse how macrotrends as well as technology adoption are likely to reconfigure labour markets and shape the demand for jobs and skills in the 2023-2027 timeframe.
Macrotrends, including the green transition, ESG standards and localization of supply chains, are the leading drivers of net job growth, with economic challenges such as high inflation, slower economic growth and supply shortages posing the greatest threat. Advancing technology adoption and increasing digitization will cause significant labour market churn, with an overall net positive in job creation, the report said.
Among the fastest-growing jobs in 2023 are Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning specialists, sustainability specialists, business intelligence analysts and information security specialists; whereas largest absolute growth is expected in education, agriculture and digital commerce.
The World Economic Forum (WEF) listed the 10 fastest growing jobs to include AI and Machine Learning Specialists; Sustainability Specialists; Business Intelligence Analysts; Information Security Analysts; Fintech Engineers; Data Analysts and Scientists; Robotics Engineers; Big Data Specialists; Agricultural Equipment Operators; and Digital Transformation Specialists.
Also, WEF said top 10 skills in 2023 will include Analytical thinking; Creative thinking; Resilience, flexibility and agility; Motivation and self-awareness; Curiosity and life-long learning; Technological literacy; Dependability and attention to detail; Empathy and active listening; Leadership and social influence; and Quality control.
Saadia Zahidi, managing director of World Economic Forum, said, “For people around the world, the past three years have been filled with upheaval and uncertainty for their lives and livelihoods, with COVID-19, geopolitical and economic shifts, and the rapid advancement of AI and other technologies now risks adding more uncertainty.”
She said the good news is that there is a clear way forward to ensure resilience. She called on governments and businesses to invest in supporting the shift to the jobs of the future through the education, reskilling and social support structures that can ensure individuals are at the heart of the future of work.
While technology continues to pose both challenges and opportunities to labour markets, employers expect most technologies to contribute positively to job creation. The fastest growing roles are being driven by technology and digitalization.
Big data ranks at the top among technologies seen to create jobs, with 65 percent of survey respondents expecting job growth in related roles. The employment of data analysts and scientists, big data specialists, AI machine learning specialists and cybersecurity professionals is expected to grow on average by 30 percent by 2027.
Training workers to utilise AI and big data will be prioritised by 42 percent of surveyed companies in the next five years, ranking behind analytical thinking (48%) and creative thinking (43%) in importance.
Digital commerce will lead to the largest absolute gains in jobs: approximately two million new digitally enabled roles are expected, such as e-commerce specialists, digital transformation specialists, and digital marketing and strategy specialists.
At the same time, the fastest declining roles are also being driven by technology and digitalization, with clerical or secretarial roles including bank tellers, cashiers and data entry clerks expected to decline fastest.
But while expectations of the displacement of physical and manual work by machines has decreased, reasoning, communicating and coordinating – all traits with a comparative advantage for humans – are expected to be more automatable in the future.
Artificial intelligence, a key driver of potential algorithmic displacement, is expected to be adopted by nearly 75 percent of surveyed companies and is expected to lead to high churn – with 50 percent of organisations expecting it to create job growth and 25 percent expecting it to create job losses.
Rise of green, education and agriculture jobs
Investment in the green transition and climate-change mitigation, as well as increasing consumer awareness of sustainability issues are driving industry transformation and opening new opportunities in the labour market.
The strongest net job-creation effects are expected to be driven by investments that facilitate the green transition of businesses. As countries seek more renewable energy sources, roles including renewable energy engineers and solar energy installation and systems engineers will be in high demand.
Investment will also drive growth in more generalist sustainability roles, such as sustainability specialists and environmental protection professionals, which are expected to grow by 33 percent and 34 percent respectively, translating to growth of approximately 1 million jobs.
However, the largest absolute gains in jobs will come from education and agriculture. The report finds that jobs in the education industry are expected to grow by about 10 percent, leading to three million additional jobs for vocational education teachers and university and higher education teachers. Jobs for agricultural professionals, especially agricultural equipment operators, graders and sorters, are expected to see a 15-30 percent increase, leading to an additional four million jobs.
According to a Recruit Holdings company, while demand for social jobs such as those in health and education have grown faster during the pandemic, these job openings are harder to fill than others.
Hisayuki Idekoba, president, chief executive officer and representative director of the board of Recruit Holdings, said: “At Recruit, we believe we must continue to embrace AI and technology to help job seekers and employers as we navigate near-term macroeconomic headwinds and long-term labour market challenges.”
Idekoba informed that labour shortage would remain for many years ahead across many sectors and particularly as the population ages. “It is essential that we identify new ways to simplify the hiring process to support a thriving economy and society where everyone can prosper together,” Idekoba added.
Increasing urgency for the reskilling revolution
A key takeaway from the report is that, companies surveyed warned that skills gaps and an inability to attract talent are the key barriers to transformation, showing a clear need for training and reskilling across industries. For example, six in 10 workers will require training before 2027 but only half of employees are seen to have access to adequate training opportunities today. At the same time, the report estimates that, on average, 44 percent of an individual worker’s skills will need to be updated.
In particular, the report advised that the gap between workers’ skills and future business needs puts the onus on companies and governments to enable learning and reskilling opportunities. Government funding for skills training would help connect talent to employment.
For example, while there is continued growth in green jobs in the past four years, as indicated by additional research conducted by LinkedIn for this year’s report, reskilling and upskilling towards green skills is not keeping pace.