A new report has a stern warning for the global workforce: stay flexible and upskill yourself for Industry 4.0.
The McKinsey Global Institute cautions that as many as 375 million workers will need to switch occupational categories by 2030 due to Industrial automation.
The work most at risk of automation includes physical jobs in predictable environments, such as operating machinery or preparing fast food. Data collection and processing is also in the crosshairs, with implications for mortgage origination, paralegals, accounts and back-office processing.
To remain viable, workers must embrace retraining and upskilling in different fields. E-Mobility alone will requre more than 10 million workforce by 2030 and the preparation of workforce should start now.
“The model where people go to school for the first 20 years of life and work for the next 40 or 50 years is broken,” Susan Lund, a partner for the McKinsey Global Institute and co-author of the report, told CNN. “We’re going to have to think about learning and re-training throughout the course of your career to stay ahead of your peers in terms of skill and certifications”
The authors believe we may see a massive transition on a scale not seen since the early 1900s, when workers shifted from farms to factories.
Despite the looming challenges, the report revealed how workers can move forward. While the introduction of the personal computer in the 1980s eliminated some jobs, it created many more roles. Workers who are willing to develop new skills should be able to find new jobs. Similarly for now, those who are ready to upskill in Industry 4.0 technologies will kepp themselves ahead.
“The dire predictions that robots are taking our jobs are overblown,” Lund said. “Yes, work will be automated, [but] there will be enough jobs for everyone who are trained and upskilled in most areas.”
The takeaway: If you want to breathe easily, keep yoursel skill sharp and do the trainings and certifications that can keep you ahead in this competitive environment.