Ingeus at "The Future Of Work" - University of Applied Labour Studies Mannheim

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University of Applied Labour Studies invites Ingeus to talk about the challenges and opportunities that the future of work brings.

In a recent survey of 10,000 European employees about the future of work, nearly one third of people thought they would be replaced by a robot within the next ten years.  Are they right to be worried? Research from the global consultancy McKinsey suggests they might be.  In a study published last year, they suggested that automation and technological change is likely to cause up to 30% of jobs to disappear over the coming years.  

The University of Applied Labour Studies in Mannheim invited Ingeus’ International Director to speak to its students about some of these global labour market trends he sees in his work.  It is not just the industrial sector that is at risk, said Anton Eckersley. Automation and Artificial Intelligence is already beginning to affect services like banking, insurance and medicine.  Last year, an insurance company in Singapore replaced many of its administrative staff with customer-facing machines.

Research suggests that Germany is particularly exposed to technological change. By 2030, over one in four of the workforce will need to find a new occupation.   Anton argued that whilst individuals will need to take more personal control over their skills and careers, the role of advisers and case managers will become more important than ever to guide people along different career pathways during their lives.   

We are increasingly seeing people managing an online portfolio of jobs and skills he told students.  Whilst diplomas and qualifications will always have role to play, employers are gradually shifting their focus to competencies, which can be easily topped up with online courses and micro-degrees.

Will robots ever replace advisers?  Anton thinks not.  Whilst machine learning is improving by the day, he argues that intrinsic human behaviors like empathy would be hard to automate. Besides, who would make the tea?