How AI will impact the Future of Jobs and Work with Jeff Wald

Jeff Wald is an Entrepreneur, Speaker and author of the book “The End Of Jobs: The Rise Of On-demand Workers And Agile Corporations”. Wald has started three technology companies, the most recent, WorkMarket , sold to ADP, is enterprise software that enables companies to organize, manage and pay their freelance workforce. He is also a Board member to other companies with an expertise in audit, governance and cyber security. 

Robotics, AI and technology as a whole are the key factors in what’s being called the fourth Industrial Revolution. Wald mentions three phases: fear-mongering, where society believes all jobs will be automated, dislocation, when job losses occur, and finally, changes in the way of work and society’s standard of living.

New technology doesn’t replace existing jobs. Companies, workers and society adjust differently to changes in labor, but eventually, that transition is slow and social and economic dislocations do happen, but not immediately. Plus, from a technology standpoint, there is a need for customer service and a human factor which cannot be disregarded.

The pandemic has definitely impacted the labor market, but is a complete guess what the outcome will be in a post pandemic world. Economic growth can be predicted, but only as the economy recovers, real estimations could be made related to unemployment rates.

The hard tech jobs are growing even through the pandemic, and they will grow post pandemic. They were growing pre pandemic. The pandemic is not impacting that. But hard human jobs, those that involve human connection are also predicted to grow because computers and AI systems can’t do those jobs. Automation is easily applicable to those jobs that are repetitive, high-volume, task-driven jobs.

Remote and flexible work have also been growing due to the pandemic. Companies had been reluctant to change their mindsets, infrastructures, policies and procedures for remote work. But now that they’ve been forced to do it, there is a great number of people who prefer working under the current work arrangements. Not meaning that workers will never again be at the office, just less often than prior to the pandemic, and more frequently than now, pursuing human interaction. But no prediction is accurate until vaccination can really incide in variants.

Everyone needs to become a lifelong learner, constantly upskilling in industries that will continue to grow or rescaling because an industry is at very high risk of automation and displacement,