The Skills for the Future Study
A major shift is currently taking place in the U.S. workforce that will affect employees for decades to come. The future of work is here and one thing is clear: robots are coming. But will they take our jobs? Perhaps more importantly - what can we do to ensure job security? In a new study Robomageddon: The Skills for the Future, MindEdge surveyed 1,000 U.S. managers (or higher) to identify rates at which robots, artificial intelligence and automation are being implemented in the workplace, and which skills they feel will future-proof workers as automation takes root across industries.
THE ROBOTS ARE COMING
The adoption of robots and automation at U.S. firms is at a moderate level, with 33 percent of managers reporting that their company has adopted robotics or other forms of advanced automation. The research found that adoption varies across industries.
Adoption of robotics or other forms of advanced automation by industry:
33% Business Products & Services
27% Financial Services
JOB SECURITY IS IN QUESTION
According to managers, 52 percent of employees whose companies have already adopted robotics and automation are worried about their job security, and 42 percent of managers believe the impact of robotics and automation in the workplace will result in the elimination of jobs.
Percentage of managers concerned about their own job security by industry:
35% of managers in technology are concerned about job security
30% of managers in business products and services
28% of managers in manufacturing
24% of managers in financial services
Percentage of employees concerned about their job security by industry (in the next 12 months, according to managers):
45% of employees in technology are concerned about job security
35% of employees in business products and services
32% of employees in retail
28% of employees in manufacturing
21% of employees in financial services
21% of employees in healthcare
PREPARING FOR ROBOMAGEDDON
According to the findings, a mix of hard and soft skills is critical to maintaining an edge against bots, and internal training or re-trainings (54%) and continuing education (42%) are the most popular steps being taken to prepare employees for the future of work. Looking ahead, managers believe their employees need both hard and soft skills to succeed -- yet 40 percent say that employees are lacking in both hard and soft skill sets:
According to managers surveyed, by industry:
49% say employees are lacking in soft skills, while 41% say employees are lacking in hard skills
52% say employees are lacking in soft skills, while 53% say employees are lacking in hard skills
43% say employees are lacking in soft skills, while 46% say employees are lacking in hard skills
40% say employees are lacking in soft skills, while 39% say employees are lacking in hard skills
Managers cited that critical and creative thinking will separate humans from robots, identifying these as the most important future-proofing skills. But managers are divided on who's responsible for making sure employees are trained and/or their skill sets are honed.
Who's responsible for making sure employees are trained properly for the future of work?
27% of managers believe it's the responsibility of employees to train and prepare themselves
20% of managers believe the responsibility falls on them
50% believe it's a shared responsibility for both employees & employers
ABOUT THE METHODOLOGY
MindEdge's Robomageddon: The Skills for the Future Study was conducted online during the last week of January 2018. The sample included 1,000 U.S. residents employed as manager or a higher job title, at organizations with 20 or more employees. Respondents were at least 18 years of age.
MindEdge, a learning company based in Waltham, provides leadership, management, communication, and educational solutions for organizations to help them meet their objectives. Founded in 1998 by Harvard and MIT educators, MindEdge specializes in higher education and professional development content and technology solutions and continues to innovate in the rapidly changing landscape of online education. The company's webtexts feature narrative, interactive learning case studies and simulations, as well as adaptive learning technology to maximize learner mastery of the content.