Once Again About AI and the Employment Market
Many jobs will be killed by automation. We’ve already explained to you which and why. You may have already checked whether your job is among the more likely to be automated and taken over by AI programs, and, if you are as sensitive as most humans, you may have already started panicking.
This article is written for you. We didn’t want to sound too pessimistic even before and ended our previous article on the topic on a somewhat optimistic note. Now, we want to expand upon the benefits of AI automation.
So, You Say There Are Opportunities for Me?
First of all, at least in the next decade or so, it’s too early to expect that all, or even most of the jobs will be substituted by AI. However, the repetitive ones, the ones which require more labour and less reasoning are already delegated to smart robots. What do we get in exchange? Well, few new jobs. Predictably, in the AI sector.
As more and more AI and robotics penetrate our lives, more and more humans will be necessary to work with them to smartly navigate the direction of their development. Thus, the need and the relevance of these kinds of jobs will increase immensely in the very near future.
In other words, if you’re young and don’t know what to do with your life, and you’re still seeking for the “right” job for you – at least as far the Fourth Industrial Revolution is concerned (it’s the revolution instigated by robotics, nanotechnology, AI, the Internet of things, quantum computing, etc.) – you might want to consider AI-related jobs. We guarantee you that you will find a job in no time. And that you will earn really well.
And By “AI-Related Jobs” You Mean
We mean many, many different kinds of jobs.
“AI-related” means programming, machine learning, robotics and data science for most of the people. And, obviously, there’s a reason why. These are the jobs of the future, the ones which will be both the most popular and the most paid once AI takes over. However, these are not the only jobs which will be in favour of employers; there are also few other you may be interested in, in addition to many that AI will create.
Jobs Which Will Grow With the Help of AI
Understand the word “creative” here in its much wider sense, as a (so far) strictly human ability to build things that haven’t existed before by making associations and connections, or find ways to solve problems by intuition. Artists, doctors, scientists are only few of the professions which can be dubbed creative. These kinds of jobs will probably be automatized only at the very end (if ever). They can, however, benefit from some AI tools.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that there will be a greater need for doctors and artists because of AI. But it means that AI will make certain parts of these jobs more convenient and less complicated for humans, so it should be much easier in the future to learn the trade in a faster period of time and succeed.
Strangely enough, this is one area that can be, by no means, replaced by artificial agents, for the simple reason that somebody has to manage AI agents as well. And, as most managers already know, managing is a very complex task which involves deep understanding of interhuman communication. There are already few smart tools which help managers become more effective at their job. So, if you’re interested in this kind of job, you can learn to use them and gain some advantage in the field.
Programmers, data scientists, people who work on the creation and maintenance of AI systems – as we already mentioned, these are the jobs of the future and they will be very important for humanity to make the next large step of its evolution. They too should undergo certain changes. Some of the tech jobs which are in demand today may become less popular, while others may become more essential.
It’s worth to note that there’s a very small chance programming to be automated since it is quite difficult even for humans, and AI is not as smart. And no matter what kind of changes happen in the area in the near future, it’s very probable that tech skills will remain as relevant and as helpful as they are today. At least until we’re left with nothing to do.
Jobs Which AI Will Generate
Training an AI system to understand human emotions – instead of the rough context only – is something that’s still unattainable and something scientists are currently working on.
For example, nowadays, despite quite developed NLP tools, programs still make a lot of mistakes when it comes to interpreting human speech. The main reason is that understanding the context isn’t enough. Too many things in our speech are non-translatable as they are infused with creativity, and are born out of the combination of words – which adds a certain mood to the text or conversation.
Teaching programs emotional intelligence is much more mechanical than you would expect at the moment: it all boils down to preparing datasets and loading them into a computer program using an algorithm able to extract knowledge out of them. However, as we get more and more advanced AI agents, the way of teaching may change. And so should the jobs.
The AI world is not bereaved of failures. You may have already heard about few incidents. Microsoft’s chatbot called Tay is one of them: only 24 hours after being launched on Twitter, it developed racist and sexist behaviour. It wasn’t something anyone should be proud with, but it was an important experience. It served to highlight the main threats, in addition to inspiring people to find workaround solutions. As AI systems grow more advanced and more complicated, the problem will become bigger as well: it’s the basis of every robots-gone-wrong SF scenario. (Have you watched Westworld?) Lesson learned: we need to be more attentive. Hence – a new kind of job.
A person taking up this task will be in charge of ensuring that AI systems behave according to the laws of human morality and ethics. He or she will need to track and analyse all the ways an AI program may treat humans. In case of a problem or an ambiguity, such person should communicate the issue with the technical representative who will be able to guarantee that the problem is going to be fixed before the AI program starts.
In view of Elon Musk’s attempts to stop AI at all costs, the integrity of an AI ethics analyst may become the most important trait a human can have in the world of tomorrow.
Nowadays, the main issue which prevents professionals from using AI tools to help themselves is a fairly straightforward one: they simply don’t understand how they work. Despite all those dizzily successful predictions made by AI agents, they are too obscure and strange to be reliable enough for such areas like healthcare. When you are unable to understand why an AI program helped you once, you won’t understand why it failed the next time either.
Therefore, at least for now, an AI interpreter is, more or less, a necessity. Creating a bridge between AI and the other fields of human endeavour is something very few people are currently working on. As a result, many tech-savvy professionals, coming from hundreds of different fields, are wanted all around to kickstart AI integration – in hospitals, schools, law firms, etc. etc – and help many creative people wisely delegate some of their more boring and mechanical work to the machines.
AI will not take over the employment market – as simple as that. It will merely introduce a paradigm shift, similar to the one which occurred after the Industrial Revolution. Consequently, while many professions will become obsolete and disappear, some occupations will become much more popular, with new ones emerging on the go. It’s important to keep two things in mind: 1) acquiring basic tech-related skills is not something you’ll live to regret; and 2) understanding what’s happening in the AI field may help you gain a significant career advantage, either by investing time and money into learning a new skill, or leveraging your existent knowledge into solving relevant AI-related problems.
Don’t believe us? Mark Skwarek is a digital artist and lecturer at NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering. We’ll conclude this with his recommendation:
“Certain areas will definitely take a hard hit. If you are in technology, be aware of the industry. You will see it coming if you are watching. At the same time, we live in reality and as the game changes we need to adapt. Use the AI and automation to your advantage. I do, and take on much, much bigger projects than I would have a few years ago. I can do the work of a small group of people by myself. If employers hire the same number of people, think of the projects they could achieve.”