The future of jobs: What to expect by 2022

24 May 2019

Have you wondered what will our jobs look like in the future?

Other than an increase of technology and innovation, our job roles are now expanding and utilising new tools that were not even heard of a decade ago.

In the Future of Jobs Report by the World Economic Forum (WE Forum), we look at the trends expected across 20 economies and 12 industry sectors.

1. Automation, robotisation and digitalisation

The WE Forum predicts that artificial intelligence, big data analytics and cloud technologies will be and already are part of companies' adoption of new technology.

Companies will be investing in machine learning, virtual reality and robotic technologies to increase business processes and perform complex tasks on behalf of humans.

For example, you can expect aerial and underwater robots to be deployed in the oil and gas industries.

Mass labour would be replaced with stationary robots in automotive, aerospace, and supply chain industries.

In the financial and services sector, humanoid robots are already making their appearances with chatbots and performing analytics.

We would be seeing work tasks that are currently performed by humans today such as communication, coordinating, managing or even advising, to be shifted by technology.

2. Demand in new job areas

There may be a redundancy in today's job roles due to a growth in technology and innovation. But, this also means that there will be new jobs creation and skills demand.

WE Forum expects a growing occupation in technology-enhanced roles such as Data Analysts, Software and Applications Developers, E-Commerce and Social Media Specialists.

There may also be a growth in roles based on "human" traits and centering on people and culture such as customer service, sales, marketing, training and development.

3. Demand for new skills

Looking towards the future, HR's role in Training and Development would have to be geared towards a growth in analytical thinking and active learning.

Proficiencies such as technology design, reasoning, system analysis and complex problem solving are areas employees are expected to grow their skills in.

Soft skills such as creativity, originality, critical thinking, and negotiation will still be valuable. And, areas such as flexibility, social influence, leadership and emotional intelligence would see an increase in demand.

4. Life-long learning

According to WE Forum, by 2022, everyone would need an extra 101 days of learning.

These 101 days would include retraining and up-skilling - be it through the company or personal initiative.

Companies are likely to turn to external contractors, temporary staff or freelancers to plug the skills gap.

As we head towards the future, HR needs to have a proactive management of such trends and strategise for workforce planning, re-skilling and up-skilling for the company's benefit and operations.

Main image from Pexels

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