9 Jobs Tech Experts Predict Will Be Automated By 2030
As artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) have advanced, human labor is no longer necessary for certain tasks in the workplace. While it’s a trend that worries some, tech advocates say automation will free human workers up to tackle more impactful and creative strategic projects.
Of course, some jobs are more easily transitioned to automation than others. It’s important for business owners to recognize and prepare for these potential shifts and for those who are in or are soon to enter, the workforce to develop the skills needed for new opportunities that will arise. Below, 9 Forbes Technology Council members discuss the jobs they think will be automated in the next five to 10 years.
1. Any Tasks That Can Be Learned
Within the next 10 years, tasks that can be learned will be automated. The focus for most engineers at the moment is advancing the Level of Automation (LOA) across the board to more advanced applications in industry. The way we will realize these advancements is by building systems that can learn things they need to automate on their own, and within the next 10 years, this should be the reality. – Vijay Bolina, Global FinTech
2. Warehouse And Manufacturing Jobs
Repeatable task-based jobs are likely to be the first to be automated. AI excels at pattern recognition, performing sequenced tasks faster and with higher accuracy than human workers. Warehouse workers and other manufacturing-based jobs will be automated as robots will be able to move inventory with greater efficiency and with fewer safety concerns than humans. – Marc Fischer, Dogtown Media LLC
3. Banking Services And Retail Checkout
Jobs roles such as bank tellers and cashiers will be completely automated. Current self-service options such as ATMs and checkout kiosks will make this a natural progression. These job roles also require very little problem-solving, creativity or people-management skills, which are parts of the nuanced skill set that will be in demand and required in the future of work. – Marlyne Pierce, Modern Mogul Ventures
4. Customer Service
Customer service still has a huge potential for automation. It’s not completely uncharted territory now, but the technology just isn’t where it needs to be to keep customers from getting frustrated because they feel they’re speaking to robots who can’t understand them. It is, however, improving rapidly, and I think that may be an industry that switches over entirely in the next few years. – Marc Alacqua, Signafire
5. Outbound Sales
Most people don’t want to have an awkward conversation, so it’s only natural that outbound sales will continue being automated. There are now AI bots that can have a conversation with a person through email, and when the lead becomes interested, pass the email to an employee to call the lead. This shifts the call from a cold outbound lead to a warm inbound lead, which is much easier to close. – Thomas Griffin, OptinMonster
6. Research And Data Entry
Look for small to mid-sized companies to rely heavily on Google, Amazon and others for research investments, resulting in research and data roles being automated. While bigger companies productize research, smaller product companies will not get bogged down by building “in-house” capabilities but will instead leverage offerings from bigger players to bring AI- and ML-enhanced products to market faster. – Andres Angelani, Softvision
7. Production Line Evolution
Production line robots have been a symbol of automation for years now, and they’re getting better. Other aspects of that line, like quality control, are next to be automated. For example, AI uses visual image-seeking patterns to determine if a car door is affixed properly. AI will not be a substitute for everything, but the combination of AI plus people is greatly improving assembly and manufacturing automation. – Artem Petrov, Reinvently
8. Pharmaceutical Discovery
While I don’t believe that the lab work will be fully automated anytime soon, I do believe that parts of the drug discovery process will be automated—for example, choosing the ingredients for your experiments, reading the relevant scientific data and even outsourcing some of the techniques and services. Making those processes more efficient will decrease the time to market for drug discovery significantly. – Dr. Karin Lachmi, Bioz
9. Delivery Services
Automation is best when it is a repetitive action. Restaurants already use automation to dispense your soda in the drive-through or fry up a batch of fries when more are needed. I see package delivery being automated at some point. Drones are already being tested to deliver packages—why not a self-driving truck with a drone to drop the package off at the door? – Michael Hoyt, Life Cycle Engineering, Inc.