Study: Tech executives predict significant job automation in the next five years

Study: Tech executives predict significant job automation in the next five years
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A new study found that a majority of technology executives believe a significant portion of jobs will be automated within the next five years.

According to results from a new study conducted by the Consumer Technology Association, a Washington, D.C., trade association representing technology companies, 7 percent of tech executives polled believe that at least some job functions would be automated within the next half-decade. Forty-four percent believe that most will be automated in that same time frame.

The executives who participated in the study were split roughly 50/50 between small and large technology companies.

Fifty-five percent of executives polled also said that they strongly agreed with the statement that they would automate jobs at their own companies “to remain competitive.”

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Concerns regarding automation have spiked in recent years as business leaders and lawmakers scramble to balance economic productivity gains from more efficient automated work, with potentially lost jobs.

Despite forecasting an uptick in the amount of jobs being automated, 70 percent executives polled also said that they agreed with the statement that they would hire more employees.

Almost half, 48 percent, of the executives said that they planned to bring on increased amounts of contract and part-time workers.

The increase of contract employees in some spaces of the economy, including on ride-hailing companies like Lyft and Uber, has prompted some to criticize the companies for avoiding giving healthcare benefits to those employees who work for the companies full time.

Other key findings in the study included that a hefty amount of executives said that they were having a difficult time finding the candidates they wanted for available jobs. Seventy-one percent said that they were having difficulties in finding properly skilled candidates for their job openings.

This might be the result of a lack of employees who have gone through skills training that employers want. Eighty-six percent of those surveyed said that they will need employees with more technical skills.

The survey polled a total of 314 tech executives.