There are a lot of things you see on Twitter. Some spur some reasoning, others infuriate you, some almost depress you but this is one of those that spur some writing. This is one of them.
Is Technology eliminating or changing jobs?
— sir_deeda (@sir_deeda) April 8, 2017
One thing we all ought to have resolved ourselves to is the fact that, tech is no longer a separate aspect of our lives but has become integral in everything we do. This means that as traditional as a job may seem, there is always a role that tech can play.
What that simply translates to is, you have to adopt tech to remain relevant. A trait of technology is that it advances really fast. You can’t compare today’s technology to that 10 years earlier. The difference is a lot. If you take a break for about 2 years you’ll have a bit of learning to do to catch up with latest trends.
So does tech eliminate jobs or does it change jobs?
Tech Eliminating Jobs
Occupations are not static. Innovations have effects and one those is change. Some jobs survive, some don’t. Where a software or machine can do the jobs of thousands of people or even a few hundred people, a business would definitely adopt such technology to minimize costs.
Earlier, blue collar jobs were the only ones threatened, but as technology becomes smarter and more advanced, a lot more jobs are threatened. Accountants, Surgeons (yes, surgeons), support services, lawyers and doctors are not spared. Technologies like donotpay and Contract Intelligence (COIN) are doing the jobs of lawyers. Driverless cars, robots that write, carry out operations and many other tasks that seemed only humans could do are now been assigned to computers.
So the question, is tech eliminating jobs? My answer, Yes.
Tech Changing Jobs
Tech has really changed the way some jobs are being done today. One of such is marketing. Marketing has continued to not only remain relevant but in demand. This is as a result of tech which has gradually led to the emergence of the “digital marketer”. The job descriptions remain the same however, the tools which are being used to execute have changed as there are a lot more platforms and tools available with access to a wider market.
So, technology can result in a change in jobs.
Tech Creating Jobs
In blaming tech for a lot of job losses, people often fail to acknowledge the amount of jobs tech equally creates. Some as basic as blogging, youtubing (if that is a word), vlogging and many others, have become a means of livelihood for so many people either by creating the services which help carry out these acts or using it. Beyond these, new technologies create new jobs. Skills required to execute jobs in tech are in great demand and they do pay well. It does not mean that others pay less. Of 10 skills that were predicted to be in demand for 2017 by Linkedin, all are tech-related. Marketing which is no new field is ranked 9th but in form of Search Engine Marketing (SEM), an area which has evolved as a result of tech. The jobs created as a result of tech seems to balance off areas that are eliminated, however slightly.
In the end, as we keep making plans for the future, some things would not be able to make the cut. Its not because they are not good enough, but it is just what it is. They have no place in the future, and are no longer needed thus, they become eliminated.
While poverty, low literacy level and slow internet speeds have slowed down tech penetration and adoption in Africa, it does not change the fact that to remain very relevant in today’s world, adoption of technology has a role to play.