3. Trigger an inclusive future (future jobs)

12 min task

1. Trigger an inclusive future

1.1 The Needed Skills for Future Works 

The changing nature of work and skills in the digital age

There are jobs that 20 years ago were not imaginable, such as Virtual assistant, youtuber, app-develop.

At the same time, other jobs have almost disappeared.

The European Comisson (EU) report “The changing nature of work and skills in the digital age”, offers an evidence based analysis of the impact of technology on labour markets and skills.

The report provides new research and data for the EU on:

  • the interplay between new technologies, jobs, and work organisation
  • the extent and nature of work mediated by digital labour platforms
  • the structural change in labour markets

It describes:

  • new form of works that are emerging,
  • the different evolution of the labour market across regions
  • the skills and competences that will be needed in the future job market.
  • It adds to the discussion:
  • the challenges and opportunities that the changing nature of work represents for the EU
  • how people and education systems should develop skills for the future.

Key findings:

New technologies will reshape millions of jobs in the EU:

  • Millions of jobs are at risk because of automation. Especially, those that involve routine tasks.
  • Technology creates new types of jobs. But it is difficult to predict where and how many.
  • Digital technologies also change what people do on the job, and how they do it.

Digital and non-cognitive skills (communication, planning, teamwork, …) are increasingly necessary to seize emerging job opportunities:

  • Jobs requiring a combination of  digital and non-cognitive skills (communication, planning, teamwork…) tend to be better paid than others.
  • Employers seek team-workers who can adapt to change and are open to learning.
  • Most occupations that grew in the EU since 2011 are rich in social interactions and require above-average ICT skills.

Technology is a key driver of new forms of work:

  • Technology provides incentives for employers to outsource work. It enables workers to work remotely and in novel structures.
  • Platform work and other atypical forms of employment are growing in the EU, involving many young people and highly educated workers.
  • Platform work is a clear example of how digital transformation offers new job opportunities. But it creates challenges for workers and policy makers.
  • International competition, outsourcing, and the rise of digital labour platforms can generate fragmented and short-lived jobs.

The employment landscape is evolving differently across the EU, widening the gap between regions:

  • Beyond technological change, many other factors shape the evolution of the employment landscape. For example, economic structures and labour market institutions.
  • Highly urbanised areas show a much larger share of high-paid jobs.
  • The employment structure of peripheral European regions remains far from converging to the core.

Source: https://ec.europa.eu/

Read more: Changing nature work

According to CEDEFOP, it is expected that 90% of jobs will require some sort of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) skills, and today a lack of labour supply with ICT skills is a challenge in Europe with 700,000 uncovered vacancies by 2015. Furthermore, together with increasing unemployment, the gaps between supply and demand of labour remain high, while at the same time, new forms of labour (crowdfunding, crowdsourcing, time banks, on-line volunteering) are emerging.

Cedefop’s European Skills and Jobs survey has revealed that about 43% of EU adult employees recently experienced new technologies at work, such as introduction of machines and ICT systems. About seven in ten EU workers require at least moderate digital skills to do their job.

Rapid digitalisation and the spread of new technologies, such as the Internet of things, robotics and Artificial Intelligence are creating widespread disruption in EU labour markets, including a risk of job loss for some occupations due to automation.

But technological progress is also offering opportunities for marked transformation in most jobs and business models, including an increasing reliance on independent or online platform labour, improvement in skills anticipation and matching capabilities and improved diagnostics with the assistance of Big data and algorithmic decision making.

Unprecedented technological development will also impact skill needs and hence pose significant demands on both initial and continuing vocational training to enable reskilling and upskilling of individuals. As revealed by the Cedefop ESJ survey, one in five (21%) adult employees in Europe considers it very likely, and 27% moderately likely, that their skills will be outdated in the medium-term.

Sweeping technological change has raised uncertainty among workers across Europe. Some forecasts predict that nearly half of all jobs in advanced economies may potentially be automated, and 72% of EU citizens fear that robots may ‘steal people’s jobs’. Cedefop’s European skills and jobs survey has added detail to the theories: 43% of adult workers across the EU reported that the technologies they use in the workplace have changed in the past five years, while 47% saw changes in their working methods or practices.

“Artificial or human intelligence?” is a Cedefop´s research which shows that automation and artificial intelligence do not necessarily destroy, but rather transform jobs. People, businesses and labour markets will have to adapt and acquire new skills, enabling them to cooperate with machines.

Education and training provision will have to offer ‘robot-compatible’ skills and competences, blending specific occupational skills with key competences such as entrepreneurship and learning to learn. Political decision makers must determine how to frame this continuing transformation, ensuring that nobody is left behind as new work methods are introduced.

Source: https://www.cedefop.europa.eu/

Read more: Artificial or human intelligence

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