Manufacturing News from the Engineered Designer Perspective

Automation-proof jobs, and jobs that will eventually be automated

​As technology advances and prices soar, jobs are increasingly becoming automated, replacing workers at a rapid pace. From the introduction of order-taking kiosks at restaurants and self-service registers at supermarkets and grocery stores to welding and soldering on assembly lines, a growing number of jobs are becoming automated. As we see more jobs being replaced by machines, we begin to wonder if any are truly safe.

Warehouse, distribution, and parking garage robots might be doing repetitive jobs in future:

 

Transformative technology

​Automation has the potential to transform sectors such as healthcare and finance, as well as affect portions of nearly all jobs in one way or another. While it will not likely result in a complete overhaul of any particular industry, it will significantly impact a large percentage of jobs across the board.

 

Even car parking can be automated. A flat robot under the car moves the car to an available parking spot and brings the car out when the customer pays their bill by smart phone.

 

The main factor in determining whether a job is at risk of becoming automated is whether it is more cost-effective to have a human or a machine to perform it. In addition to the initial cost of investment, machinery requires maintenance as it becomes worn, upgrades as and alterations as new techniques emerge, etc. Additionally, the decision to implement automated technology to replace human workers may result from a desire for better quality work with fewer errors.

Jobs most susceptible to automation

​According to recent studies, the jobs that are most susceptible to automation based solely on technical considerations are those in food service, retail, and manufacturing. The most accurate way to determine the potential for a job to become automated is by analyzing work activities rather than occupations.

Predictable physical work, such as welding, food preparation, packaging, assembly, and manufacturing has a relatively high chance of becoming automated.

 

 

Unpredictable work, such as construction, forestry, and farming are not easily replicated by technology. Therefore, these types of jobs are safer, at least for the time being.

​Data collection and processing have the potential for automation, since computers are able to increase the scale and quality of these activities with an accuracy not easily replicated by human intelligence. A majority of companies have implemented automated data mining and invoice processing and delivery.

Advisers, traders and agents are safe — for now

Financial advisors, stock traders, and investment bankers depend on their intelligence and wit to perform their jobs. However, much of the workforce is devoted to data collection and processing, which means the potential for automation is relatively high. Insurance agents gather customer information, underwriters verify the accuracy of records, securities and financial agents prepare contracts, and bank tellers verify the accuracy of financial data. Mortgage brokers spend up to 90 per cent of their time processing applications. The majority of these tasks can be automated, while few of them cannot.

 

 

Mangers, planners and creative jobs are safe — for now

The most difficult jobs to replicate with technology are those involving management, expertise, decision making, planning, and creativity. Even some of the tasks performed by doctors and nurses have the potential to be automated. These jobs include administering non- intravenous medications such as anesthesia, reading radiological scans, information gathering, etc. Although the potential for automation may be high, job replacement is not a certainty. Feasibility of implementation, cost effectiveness, efficiency, human relations, and a number of other factors all play into the decision. Each employer ultimately must weigh the risks and rewards according to their own needs, preferences, and willingness to sacrifice manual labor in exchange for technological advances and lower costs.

SaveSave

More Great Stories
Automation-proof jobs, and jobs that will eventually be automated
​As technology advances and prices soar, jobs are increasingly becoming automated, replacing worke [more]
A tech-smart, airless, customizable tire, with replenishing tread unveiled by Michelin
Usually concept tires aren’t as exciting as concept cars, but Michelin wowed the industry with it [more]
BMW to invest 6 per cent of revenue in R&D; plans to streamline manufacturing to pay for research
The new vision for BMW seems to be “Less is more.” The German carmaker plans to offer fewer cho [more]
Swimming Robot to Examine Damage from Japan’s Nuclear Reactor
Toshiba, a Japanese industrial group unveiled a swimming robot designed to probe damage from meltdo [more]
Ontario to update Nuclear Emergency Response Plan in the event of nuclear and radiological events
Although Ontario's nuclear system has an excellent safety record, Ontario is inviting the public to [more]
StatsCan reports record auto sales for May 2017: 11 per cent over last year
Spring fever hit the auto sector as annualized sales reached 2 million units for the month of May, 2 [more]
$2 Billion expansion of Nova gas pipeline planned by TransCanada Corp to increase pipeline capacity
TransCanada Corp plans a significant multi-billion dollar expansion of its Nova natural gas pipeline [more]
Electric bush plane: combined project of Zenair and Solar Ship combines rugged short landings with green technology
Two aircraft companies from Ontario have recently combined efforts in a unique project as part of th [more]
Silicon Valley North: Canada aims to rival Silicon Valley due to better access to highly skilled workers on expedited visas
Not content with the title of "Hollywood North", Canada aims to further develop their "Silicon Valle [more]
Clean freight: with over 10 per cent of emissions coming from “goods moving” the push is on for greener trucking
Greenhouse gas emissions have been on the rise, and approximately ten per cent of Canada’s emissio [more]
Ford’s 347 kph GT: World’s fastest supercar a testbed for new automotive technology
The team of automotive engineers behind Ford’s GT had three goals when they first began work in 20 [more]
Amazon brings 800 high tech jobs to Ontario including engineers, programmers and developers
Ontario has secured a significant investment from global technology company Amazon thanks to the pro [more]
NASA Studies Climate Change in Canada’s Skies
A decade-long project, which is currently in its second year, will include NASA traversing the Canad [more]
Oil production should grow 33 per cent in Canada by 2030, despite lower oilsands spending
Crude oil production is projected to increase to 5.12 million barrels per day by 2030 — up from 2 [more]

Other Popular News and Stories

  • Manufacturing the sole industry showing job losses in February
  • Japex to buy into west coast LNG development
  • Clean energy expected to surge as pv costs drop
  • RV industry has growing role in Canada's economy: study
  • Russian leasing company orders 42 CSeries jets from Bombardier
  • Volkswagen to produce super-efficient hybrid
  • Skilled labour shortage in world oil industry: report
  • Bombardier nearly ready to flight test CSeries
  • Miners struggling with higher costs, lower prices
  • Canada keeping up pressure on US for Keystone XL approval
  • GM investing $250 million at Ingersoll plant
  • FTG Aerospace to supply avionics to Rockwell Collins
  • SPPCA's new landing gear facility opening in Mississauga
  • Economy managed slight growth in Q4, but shrank in December
  • Canadian oil production up; producers turning to railways for shipment
  • DART Aerospace re-branding itself to reach wider markets
  • BC refinery close to financing deal
  • Bombardier holds update on CSeries aircraft
  • Pratt & Whitney Canada announces helicopter engine contracts
  • Canadian business, except energy, had profitable Q4: Statistics Canada