The impact of WFH, AI, and automation on job security

In the ever-evolving aftermath of the pandemic and the relentless march of technological advancements that redefine our world, employees across diverse industries find themselves grappling with a heightened sense of uncertainty regarding the future of their careers. This prevailing unease is not unwarranted, considering the transformative impact of groundbreaking technologies like ChatGPT, which are reshaping the very fabric of work and ushering in an era of unprecedented change.

As we stand witness to this profound shift, it becomes crucial to acknowledge that the once-familiar realms of work and career paths are undergoing a remarkable evolution. Established job roles are dissolving before our eyes, paving the way for the emergence of fresh opportunities, all fueled by the increasingly interdependent relationship between humans and technology. In order to flourish in this dynamic environment, it is incumbent upon us to recalibrate our perspective, embracing technology not as a menacing adversary or a threat to our livelihoods, but rather as an invaluable ally capable of enriching our professional lives.

The changing landscape of work

Workplace dynamics have undergone a significant transformation, with remote work becoming increasingly prevalent as companies embrace flexible arrangements that allow employees to work from anywhere. This shift brings numerous benefits, such as greater flexibility and reduced commuting time. In fact, a study by the National Bureau of Economic Research found that remote workers save an average of 72 minutes in daily commute time. This not only saves time but also contributes to reduced stress and increased job satisfaction.

However, the shift to remote work poses distinct challenges, particularly in terms of maintaining visibility within organisations and forging meaningful connections with colleagues. A survey conducted by Buffer in 2021 highlighted the prevalent struggles that remote workers face, including difficulties in collaborative efforts and the experience of feelings of isolation and loneliness.

To overcome these hurdles, it is vital for employees to prioritise effective communication, foster collaboration, and cultivate strong professional networks. Placing emphasis on these critical aspects within the remote work setting enables team members to bridge the perceived distance and effectively address common issues, such as combating feelings of isolation.

Adopting new skills and workstyles

There has been a significant expansion of the global talent pool during the past few years, projected to reach record levels by 2040, as reported by the World Economic Forum. This expansion brings about increased competition and heightened concerns regarding job security, as more candidates vie for limited positions.

The evolving landscape also presents a valuable opportunity to contemplate the crucial professional skills required for the future job market. As routine tasks are automated through AI and technology, it becomes essential for employees to prioritise the development of skills that align with these advancements. Projections indicate that by 2030, as many as 375 million workers worldwide may need to switch careers or acquire new skills. A comprehensive study conducted by Deloitte underscores the increasing importance of soft skills such as creativity, decision-making, and adaptability. Continuous learning and embracing innovative work approaches are becoming integral aspects of a standard career path, sought after by employers.

Utilising technology in today’s workforce

The recent emergence of low-code platforms has marked a notable development in the midst of this workplace shift. By granting employees the power to create software applications without the need for programming expertise, these innovative platforms revolutionise processes and workflows while enabling efficient data management. The availability of these platforms, accessible at any time and from any location, ensures seamless connectivity for remote workers, fostering a strong sense of collaboration and camaraderie while addressing concerns related to job security.

Furthermore, no-code platforms provide a look into what work will be like tomorrow, where automation frees us from repetitive tasks, enabling us to concentrate on higher-level activities such as strategic planning, innovative thinking, and problem-solving. Adopting these cutting-edge tools empowers employees with increased autonomy, control, and accountability over their careers, propelling organisational efficiency and fostering a sense of purpose.

Uncertainty means opportunity

Automation has become an integral part of modern businesses, and its presence is set to persist. According to Gartner, by 2025, approximately 50% of enterprises will adopt AI orchestration platforms to operationalise AI. This will likely raise concerns about the evolving nature of work, but it is crucial to recognise that work has always been subjected to change.

Innovation has always brought about uncertainty and opportunities throughout history. Consider the transportation industry’s progression from horses and sailboats to steam engines, internal combustion engines, electric cars, and now autonomous vehicles. Each advancement disrupted existing norms but also created new and unforeseen possibilities. Similarly, the internet and mobile devices revolutionised communication, interaction with machines, and paved the way for disruptive technologies like ChatGPT.

To navigate the path towards an increasingly automated future, it is crucial to embrace the transformative potential of automation and focus on the multitude of opportunities it offers. Automation can streamline operations, reduce costs, and enhance efficiency for organisations while enabling workers to concentrate on high-value, purpose-driven tasks.

By directing our attention to the creative applications of emerging technologies, we — as professionals — can ensure that AI and automation serve as beneficial tools, fostering growth and development in the years ahead. We are already witnessing positive changes through the utilisation of no-code platforms and do-it-yourself automation. The shift is underway, where people are not being replaced by AI but rather leveraging it as a means to redefine and enhance their roles.