In 2017, the International Labour Organisation Global Commission On The Future Of Work began its work and published their work in 2019 in a report titled, Work for a Brighter Future. The commission was co-chaired by the President of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa and Sweden’s Prime Minister, Stefan Löfven. The report states that technological advances will create new jobs, but those who lose their jobs in this transition may be the least equipped to seize the new opportunities. Today’s skills will not match the jobs of tomorrow and newly acquired skills may quickly become obsolete. However, if everyone is aware of the changes, if everyone is included and works together to find solutions, there is a brighter future to our world of work.
In their 2017 report, McKinsey Global Institute addressed the question of what automation will mean for skills. They said:
“Workers of the future will spend more time on activities that machines are less capable of, such as managing people, applying expertise, and communicating with others. They will spend less time on predictable physical activities and on collecting and processing data, where machines already exceed human performance. The skills and capabilities required will also shift, requiring more social and emotional skills and more advanced cognitive capabilities, such as logical reasoning and creativity.”
The World Economic Forum Future of Jobs Report lists Top 10 skills to have in 2020. This list echoes the same sentiment to what McKinsey said. One can see that the skills needed for future jobs are more of the “soft skills” traditionally not given the attention they deserve. The continued accelerating pace of technological and socio-economic disruption, changes in business models will not only influence the skills employees to need but shorten the shelf life of their skills. Even in roles not directly affected by the technology they will be some sort of skill addition to adapt to the new ecosystem. The World Economic Forum predicted that, on average, by 2020, more than a third of the desired core skill sets of most occupations will be comprised of skills that are not yet considered crucial to the job in 2016.
In their 2020 report titled, Jobs of tomorrow Mapping Opportunity in the New Economy, the World Economic Forum founded the following:
Demand for both “digital” and “human” factors is driving growth in the professions of the future:
Whilst we are witnessing a rise in demand of roles at the forefront of the data and AI economy such as engineering, cloud computing and product development, emerging professions also reflect the continuing importance of human interaction in the new economy. This is giving rise
to greater demand for care economy jobs. Jobs in marketing, sales and content production as well as roles at the forefront of people and culture are growing in demand.
The highest-growth jobs of tomorrow are:
The roles with the highest rate of growth within high-volume jobs include Artificial Intelligence Specialists, Medical Transcriptionists, Data Scientists, Customer Success Specialists and Full Stack Engineers. Within lower volume jobs, the highest growth is in Landfill Biogas Generation System Technicians, Social Media Assistants, Wind Turbine Service Technicians, Green Marketers and Growth Hackers.
A look at the professions of the future