Canada feels pretty confident that AI and robots won’t take our jobs

We have now entered a new year following a decade of incredible technological advancement. Breakthroughs in artificial intelligence, virtual reality, augmented reality, automation and robotics have all contributed to the development of all types of markets.
SoftBank Pepper
SoftBank’s Pepper robot has been introduced to businesses to help assist staff and customers with their needs. Photo: SoftBank

Is this a cause for concern?

As we prepare for another decade of evolution, there have been worries that all of this tech will reduce the need for a human workforce.

Moreover, CBC reports that 11 percent of jobs could be automated over the next 15-20 years. Therefore Canadian federal officials compiled a document to brief Employment Minister Carla Qualtrough on the impact of technology on the workplace.

Despite the concerns, the documents conclude that there will be no large-scale disaster but many could struggle if action isn’t taken. This is because 29 percent of jobs in the Canada are likely to change significantly.

Humanoid robots with complex AI systems are on the rise and are already being implemented at stores and are being introduced into our homes as assistants. These could increasingly replace the need for helpers and cleaners.

Circulus
Home robot assistants such as Samsung’s piBo could become the norm over the next few years. Photo: Samsung

Change is on the horizon

However, it is actually the more familiar digitization process that Is likely to impact workers on a more prominent level. Although, rather than reducing jobs, this is causing the need for workers to adapt their skills.

We are becoming more connected with smart devices and the internet. Therefore, administrative and customer service jobs are continuing to be outsourced offshore to low-cost workers.

Meanwhile, 3D printing and similar processes are changing the way manufacturing jobs are conducted. Furthermore, changes in the way we cultivate energy through greener methods are enabling new industries to be formed.

Therefore, rather than trying to keep outdated industries alive, societies and governments have to make sure that workers are given the opportunity to train and adapt to the new technologies.

Pepper by SoftBank
From development to implementation, there could be an abundance of new types of jobs created due to new technologies. Photo: SoftBank

Support is needed

This would help maintain employment for worried workers. Additionally, it would ensure that markets have the manpower needed to keep them steering in the right direction. Subsequently, the Canadian government is set to introduce a $250-a-year benefit for workers to be put towards training.

Sunil Johal, chair of a panel of blue-ribbon experts that discussed the future of the Canadian workforce shared that labor rules and regulations need to be frequently reviewed. This is because there will continue to be more shifts within the workforce.

“If we take as a given that the world of work and the labour market is going to be shifting and adapting more quickly than ever as we move forward, then we absolutely need to move to regulatory legislative approaches that move just as quickly,” Johal said, as reported by CBC.

“When there’s a decades-long lag, that’s where you’re going to have huge issues that … put labour standards at risk of falling just so far out of step that it’s completely unacceptable.”

Altogether, this briefing between the Canadian officials is a proactive and positive move. The government is discussing measures to be put in place to ensure that workers can work with technology. This is a more effective process than trying to push it back. After all, these breakthroughs can save lives and help improve lifestyles.

Do you agree with the Canadian about the future on the workforce? Or do you feel that we should be concerned about robots filling jobs? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section.

 

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