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Is technology taking man’s place in the job market?

08.05.2019
Article from AFRIC Editorial
Technological advancements have been of great importance to man and have made life relatively easier and better. This is evident in the health sector; with advancement in healthcare and medical research, in the educational sector, and most of all in the manufacturing sector. Technology is found everywhere and is used by everybody; from toddlers to old people.
Technology has also been very present in the workplace, and has made work easier, more effective and efficient. By so doing, it has gradually replaced some positions that were once held by man and some procedures have been completely automated.

Many jobs have been replaced by technology. Before technology became so widespread, jobs such as typing, weaving, knitting and some construction work could only be executed by man. Today, it is easy for one person to type a large document within hours on a computer. As a result, the needs for type writers and typist have greatly reduced. In construction, the need for manual labour to mix mortar, transport cement, sand, and others is dying out, as there are machines capable of carrying out these tasks faster and more efficiently.

Many of those whose jobs have been affected by technology are low-skilled workers who are unable to meet up with the changes in technology and lack the intelligence to use these technologies. Some of these jobs include housekeeping, cleaning and even security. Homes and companies no longer need to have a large number of security agents in and around their premises for protection, thanks to the creation of surveillance cameras. In this light, all it takes is a special office with one or two people monitoring surveillance system. Washing machines, vacuum cleaners, dish washers and other machines have facilitated housekeeping. This is same for the banking sector where the creation of automatic teller machines have greatly reduced the need for cashiers and other front desk agents in banks and even shops and supermarkets. Unfortunately for those who hold these positions, these machines have reduced the amount of human resources needed to execute them.

Many people have also lost their jobs to technology because of the severe competition in the business world. Many companies have been forced to adopt technological advancements so as to meet up with the competitive nature of the business world.

Despite the fact that technology has taken over a few jobs that should normally be done by man, it has to a greater extent, made the workplace comfortable and working easy for many and has created new job opportunities.

When the industrial revolution started in the 18th Century, the manufacturing industry changed from artisanal to mechanize. This meant an increase in production which also led to an increase in the need of workers in other domains which came up due to the new technologies. According to a World Economic Forum report, 75 million jobs will become obsolete by 2022, while 133 million new jobs will be created in both developed and developing economies. Some of the jobs that will become obsolete include: Bank tellers, Accountants, Bookkeeping and Payroll Clerks, Customer Service, Telemarketer, Newspaper Reporter, Postal Service Clerk, Travel Agent, Street Vendor, Liberian, and Flight Attendant among others. This is because technological advancements have let to the automation of these jobs and one can get them done using an application on a mobile phone or a computer programs.

On the other hand, the most common new jobs that sprung from technology include the following:

Community Managers

These are jobs that have not been around for up to 10 years. Thanks to new technologies and most especially the social media, the community manager position was created to follow up and manage social media content and other channels for companies and organizations.

Digital Marketers

This is another job that was not been around for too long. Today, online marketing has created job for millions of people both at individual levels as well as at the level of organisations because of the wider reach offered by the internet.

Online content creators

Thanks to technological advancements and the creation of online media platform, many people have the opportunity to work as content creators. This could be for any platform; Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, blogs and many others.

App developers

This is another job that came to be thanks to advancements in technology, like the creation of smart phones and computers. This been a source of employment for millions of people worldwide.

Apart from the above mentioned jobs, there are more specialized jobs that came to be thanks to technology.

It cannot be denied that technology has made some jobs outdated and have been completely replaced by new procedures. The good news is it is possible to manage these changes and get the most out of them.

Instead of dismissing employees from their old jobs and hiring new ones for a job that has evolved, the employee can be trained to occupy the new position. For example, instead of hiring a computized accountant and dismissing a regular accountant, the latter can be trained to occupy the new function.

Technology in the workplace will be a plus to both employers and employees if it is managed effectively. Also technology is creating more jobs than the governments of many African countries. Today, it is easy for young people are self-employed thanks to technology. So instead of taking over from man, technology has only come to assist man because despite the fact that technologies are invading the job market, man is still needed to make the strategic decisions that will make a business prosper.

Article from AFRIC Editorial

Credit image : google image

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