Smart algorithms are conquering world. At least that is the impression we get now that technological evolutions are moving at a blistering pace. According to studies, the recent growth of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning will cause many jobs to change fundamentally or even disappear completely. In addition, certain profiles are at significantly more risk than others. Who is on the right career path and who will soon see his job taken over by robots? Below we share ten jobs we believe will be impossible to replace in the coming years with artificial intelligence and automation.
Jobs evolving around human relationships are at least risk of disappearing. Anyone who has ever seen the American comedy Up in the Air knows how impersonal HR management can end up. In the film, George Clooney plays the role of heartless bully who travels around the world every day to dismiss employees as quickly and efficiently as possible. This soon turns out to be disastrous for both the discarded employees and for the mental health of Clooney’s character …
Legal work is pre-eminently human work. A good plea is not only based on facts, but also requires creative connections, imagination and word art. The same also applies to the other side of case law. Judges weigh arguments on the basis of many different factors that cannot simply be quantified in a computer algorithm.
Operational and IT-manager
In the end, someone has to manage all the technology that AI is integrated into. On a technical level, this is a task for IT managers, who have to manage their developers and make technology-related decisions. The operational manager is responsible for all process-related issues. As in the case of the HR Manager, this too is inherently about people-oriented processes.
Clergymen and philosophers
Although the number of priests has been declining in most countries for years, we have little to expect from AI to increase those numbers. Unfortunately, there is no artificial intelligence that will simply take over that role. Even if it were possible, it would remain very difficult to build a complete belief system and religious belief with all its nuances …
Philosophical insights are, and will remain, the domain of mankind for the time being. New ways of thinking build on a combination of knowledge, logic, creativity and ethics which are difficult to capture in data. Even though there is some suspicion since Einstein and Darwin that God is not holding the dice, we still have to rely on people to help us out with the big questions of life.
Sales- and marketingprofessionals
Although intelligent tools and automation have gained momentum in sales desks and marketing departments in the past decade, we certainly do not see these functions disappearing. Artificial intelligence primarily offers professionals a supporting role. Smart selection and analysis of customer segments and the establishment of intelligent marketing campaigns are pre-eminently data-based decisions that cost the human brain a great deal of effort, but are a piece of cake for computers.
Creative work and negotiating deals, on the other hand, remain work on a human scale. The first agreement that is negotiated by a machine during a company visit must still be signed.
Coming up with new business visions and strategies requires a certain degree of self-reflection. You cannot simply program them and then have them executed automatically. Business leaders must be able to set beacons themselves and make decisions based on both external factors and introspection, and show leadership themselves. We also don’t see artificial intelligence doing that quickly.
Parenting is perhaps the toughest job in this list – and also the worst paid. However much fathers and mothers around the world might want, until further notice it is still impossible to leave the education of children to a hyper-intelligent tablet. Until the arrival of a robot that can combine love, affection, upbringing and changing diapers, parents remain dependent on themselves – and on each other – for the hard work …
The medical sector is at the forefront of innovation and technological aids. Fortunately, given the impending shortage of manpower, it is all hands on deck and all technological aids are more than welcome. From online screening for heart prevention to AI-based image recognition for X-rays. Yet here too the human factor remains crucial: empathy and physical support are a must for every employee in the healthcare sector.
On an operational military level, we are increasingly evolving to independently operating drones and robots worldwide. On the other hand, control is still organized from command centers with humans. Of course it does not help that many examples from popular culture have a deterrent effect. For example, Skynet – for those unfamiliar: that is the fictional AI network from the Terminator franchise – is not exactly a model of military utopia. And also a cult classic like War Games shows how quickly a runaway AI can slip into a new World War without human intervention.
Plumbers and related professionals – just think of gardeners, construction workers and electricians – need not worry. Craftsmen and women are in high demand and very sought after. Technological innovation can help them to alleviate stressful work, but when it comes to the mark, the pipes will not magically place themselves.
In the first place, Artificial Intelligence does not mean jobs disappearing from one day to the next, but simply a change in the nature of the work. Nowadays, an accountant can work several times more efficiently than ever before, which gives him or her more time to offer added value to customers. Copying stencils and working on a pocket calculator for hours is a thing of the past, and few accountants want to go back to the 1980s – or not with regard to their work.