Every day we wake up in the morning, have a cup of coffee, and go to work, nothing out of the ordinary. But what if one day you wake up to an email letting you know that your services are no longer needed because a faster, more efficient robot has replaced your role?
Photo credit: Burst
That scenario may not be what you might call “realistic.” Still, the reality behind it is that technology is on the rise, and more and more jobs are being replaced by robots and automation, putting many workers’ job security at risk.
At first, the idea was that robots and automation only impacted those working in manufacturing and factory workers, but that was a big misconception. Technology is affecting just about every job sector!
The truth is that no job is safe if you think about it. Technology is all around us and will, at some point, affect how you do your job. The question at hand is when it will affect your career?
Here’s a closer look at one particular area of technology that’s making a significant impact on the job market and job sectors that have already impacted specific job sectors.
Why is Automation Such a Threat?
The rapid advancements in technology have caused machines to outperform in jobs that are traditionally done by humans. The automation involved has made these jobs get done more quickly and efficiently with an impeccable level of accuracy.
That’s not saying that soon there won’t be a need for humans in the workforce, because there always will be a need for human interaction. Still, certain jobs and responsibilities are simply unsafe for humans to do or require an exact level of accuracy and precision that humans just can’t provide, but machines can.
For example, in manufacturing, many companies rely on the accurate dispensing of certain adhesives. As a human, we’re not always going to get those exact measurements right with every dispense, and it’s those inaccuracies that lead to wasted materials and wastes of money.
For accurate measurements in dispensing, many companies within the manufacturing industry utilize adhesive dispensing equipment for all dispensing processes. It just makes the job easier; it’s safer and is cost-efficient overall. This sometimes means eliminating the jobs of workers.
Jobs Already Impacted By Technological Advancements
There are lots of jobs already impacted by the rise in technology, but you probably just never stopped and thought about it or realized it. Some of these advancements have been around for so long, it just became a standard in your mind, but before these machines took over, it was human beings performing those jobs.
Grocery Cashier: Self-Checkout Machines
Grocery cashiers used to be one of the best positions if you enjoyed working in retail and customer service. Still, now the need for cashiers is on a steady decline since the emergence of self-checkout machines.
Sure, these machines help lines go a bit faster, but it indeed does take away from the customer shopping experience. Not only do customers have to bag their groceries, but some people enjoy the human interaction between strangers conversing in the grocery line. When you take that away, you’ve just removed the “service” out of customer service.
To take the technology even further, people can now order food subscription services and not have to go to the grocery store at all. If this trend continues on an upward trajectory, the need for grocery cashiers will considerably decline even more.
Receptionist: Automated Voice System
This particular technological advancement is one that not too many people are fans of, but it has certainly taken away the receptionist position. Instead, callers to businesses have to follow various prompts to get to the department they need.
According to CBS News, the voice prompts on automated voice systems are some of the top reasons that make customers hate businesses, and ultimately, make them not want to remain customers anymore.
Bank Teller: ATM Machines
There once was a time not too long ago where if you needed to withdraw cash from your account, you had to stand in line at your bank and have a bank teller give you the money you need. Today, you can drive or walk up to this massive machine, insert your bank card, and be given cash immediately, making bank tellers less useful in the job market.
But bank tellers haven’t been completely dismissed, they are still needed for more in-depth transactions, especially for more significant amounts of money. But for simple transactions like depositing checks and withdrawing funds, banks save lots of time and money with ATMs versus hiring more bank tellers.
Future of Job Security
The advancements in technology happen every day, and there’s no way to tell when your job will be impacted by it genuinely. But again, not every job has been impacted, and it may be years before some jobs are affected. All you can do is do your job to the best of your abilities and see what the future holds.
It will help to get acclimated with certain advancements within your industry, and you can start to just keep a watch on advancements in your sector. Keeping yourself educated and informed is going to take you a very long way and possibly prevent you from having your job eliminated.
So, stay on top of the times, keep your options open and remember, your number one advocate is you.