Robots Boost Employment (Yes, in Humans)

CE Noticias Financieras English

February 8, 2019

Artificial intelligence and automation can be a springboard to create new sources of employment. It is not just a reassuring message to avoid the fear of an employment crisis. This is something that 30% of employers in Mexico affirm, a figure higher than the global average, with 18% of the organizations that make this claim.

This is the conclusion of the study People are looking for: robots need them, carried out by ManpowerGroup. The document exposes the impact of automation on the growth of employment in companies, the next two years, as well as the functions that will be hired and the actions that are being developed to have a prepared workforce.

The report, which included interviews among 19,000 employers, including 534 in Mexico, reveals that 20% of companies in Mexico that are automating their processes will reduce the number of employees as a result of that action. But of 38% of firms ready to automate, 30% will create more jobs, four percentage points more than those who do not plan to bring artificial intelligence or some other resources to face the skills revolution 4.0.

Automation does not mean eliminating jobs, on the contrary, many new occupations will arise, but the important thing is that the work must be redesigned to ensure that humans work with the machines effectively, says Mnica Flores Barragn, president of ManpowerGroup Latin America.

The manufacturing sector leads

Manufacturing and Production is one of the most active items, since 39% of employers in this sector say they will recruit more peoplein the short term, regarding automationand 32% say they will not expand their hiring. Customer service, engineering, management and other positions that demand human skills, such as advanced negotiation, will be the most in demand, explains Flores Barragn.

However, it is fair to manufacture the item where employers least trust that the labor force they have has the necessary skills to take advantage of the technology.

So they are turning to the development of the necessary skills with training. 69% of employers in this industry recognized having training programs lasting less than six months. 25% of manufacturers train between six and 12 months, and only 6% give this resource for more than one year. Transport and communications is the sector where employers give a training period that exceeds 12 months, with 7% of employers responding in that way.

Flores Barragn emphasizes that those who demonstrate more cognitive skills, creativity and ability to process complex information, together with adaptability, can expect more hiring.

The diagnosis also showed that the most difficult skills to develop in this human scenario coexisting with automation are soft skills, according to 56% of employers in manufacturing. But the scenario in other areas is not better. For example, 72% of companies in the health sector declare having problems teaching that kind of skills.

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