AI, NLG, and Machine Learning

What Jobs Will AI Create in the Future?

The next generation of AI has prepared us for a new wave of adjustments to the workplace of the future. What jobs will technology bring, and will AI take our jobs? Learn more.

By Kendall Hirst
May 6, 2021

Fortunately for workers concerned about being displaced, this same study indicates that more than 50 percent of companies with dedicated AI solutions are working to provide training to assist employees with the necessary skills to work as in-house specialists. These education programs are a great indicator of the types of newly emerging positions that will become necessary in a workplace where AI is essential.

1. AI needs oversight and development

Although working in tandem with AI and being an AI specialist are two key areas where jobs and opportunities will expand as AI takes on a larger role in our lives, it’s also important to remember that there will always be positions available as high-level strategists for AI.

As capable as AI systems are of taking over more mundane tasks and redistributing work to allow more time for upper management, they’re equally unprepared to set themselves goals or to reorient to align with your team’s mission. This is where AI oversight becomes important, as Back in 2017, Gartner’s Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies predicted that artificial intelligence (AI) would automate plenty of jobs, leaving about 1.8 million people out of work by 2020. Predictions like this have caused many to wonder, will AI take our jobs? Despite this underlying fear, there’s increasing evidence to suggest that AI may actually be part of the solution for future unemployment crises. Although answering this question is complicated, there’s no doubt that AI is here to stay and it’s essential that all members of the workforce learn to adapt to the changes it brings.

Although this year has brought many changes and challenges for professionals who have lost their jobs due to the pandemic, as well as difficulties encountered in balancing a new work-from-home routine, we have also seen AI take center stage in the workforce. By leveraging this technology to reduce repetitive tasks and to enhance human efficiency, AI has gained a lot of traction in recent times as a powerful new coworker that employees need to learn to work with rather than fearing that they will take those workers’ jobs. Although AI-enabled bots can outperform human employees in some areas, it’s important to remember that these bots are still not entirely sentient—leaving many opportunities for human employees to refocus and reorient to keep their careers relevant, even as AI becomes increasingly advanced.

Jobs after AI reaches new heights will certainly look different, but there’s no need to fear these advancements. Ultimately, AI will lead to increased opportunities for workers in all sectors, and as long as businesses take the proper steps to ensure refocusing efforts for their current employees, almost any worker should be well-positioned to take advantage of these new openings.

How AI will change our workforce

It’s undeniable that AI will radically reshape the way we see and interact with our workplaces, coworkers, and clients. However, the timeline for this shift is still unclear. The two largest applications for AI in our workplaces, chatbots and decision support systems, are areas that are still extensively reliant on human interaction and assistance. AI systems and their ilk are very much in their infancy, especially as most experts predict we are still up to 25 years away from AI making a significant impact in our workplaces. However, the current usage of AI and bots points to the areas that they will be overtaking—and these signs point to good news!

It’s no secret that bots and AI are currently taking over the jobs that humans, in large part, do not want to do. Many in the AI community applaud the onset of automation with the hope that it will save generations of humans from backbreaking labor.

However, this scenario is reliant on industry leaders and major corporations making the efforts to reeducate, reposition, and ultimately support their employees to redirect their new career paths. Although this may sound like a big ask, there are three main reasons that supporting human careers in tandem with automation and AI might not only ensure jobs after AI takes a larger role in society but also could empower companies and organizations to reach new and exciting heights.

What jobs will AI create?

As AI ramps up in almost every industry, it’s key to remember that AI, bots, and automation cannot function in isolation, and the positions surrounding AI will be essential for staying relevant and useful in the workplace as AI continues to develop.

2. AI supplements humans

AI cannot work in a vacuum. As we’ve all experienced with the addition of chatbots and automated data systems to our daily workstreams, these tools require their own attention and efforts. Workers who have had AI implemented in their workplaces note that although it took over some of the tedious and repetitive tasks, automation changed the nature of their work. For many employees, these bots and AI systems have taken over more of the analytical work, while employees add the necessary human component, which includes communicating bots’ successes and failures, along with tweaking their internal systems to achieve the desired results.

This is a widespread phenomenon in the AI industry as a whole. It’s well-known that AI is highly capable of performing computational tasks with speed and accuracy that are simply impossible for human beings. However, it’s important to note what AI is missing. Its lack of empathy, judgment, and true cognition means that a partnership between humans and AI is the most effective way to make the most of both in your organization. Retraining employees to function as liaisons between AI and clients—or the company as a whole—is one major way in which the rise of AI will create more job opportunities.

Current lack of AI specialists

While AI research and development push ahead, it’s quickly becoming clear that there’s a lack of specialists necessary to operate and develop these systems. A recent study from Deloitte notes that 23 percent of companies are experiencing challenges staffing their advanced AI positions. This indicates that there’s a larger need and desire for workers who are capable of handling the complex assignments and assistance necessary to run and operate high-level AI challenges.

Companies will strive for maximum efficiency with their new AI tools. This will only be possible by training current employees who already familiar with the goals at hand and by orienting them to use AI as another new tool to achieve these goals. This new area of expertise, alongside equal research into potential new areas of AI to explore, will prove to be critical for employees in nearly every industry.

Conclusion: Will AI take our jobs?

Ultimately, this question can be answered with both yes and no. Yes, some jobs will go away with AI, but these same jobs will be replaced by newer positions offering employees greater opportunities for education and advancement, while simultaneously doing away with jobs that have previously been challenging and tedious labors for whoever has had to undertake them. The future of AI is bright, and there will be a place for all of us—no matter what we currently do.

For more on the latest on AI and the workforce, check out our article New Skills Required to Thrive in the Feeling Economy.