As anyone who has ever watched any futuristic sci-fi movie knows, robots are becoming dangerously advanced. In Hollywood that danger expresses itself with mass human annihilation. In reality it’s even more disturbing.
According to the World Economic Forum, 5 million human jobs will simply disappear over the next five years due to advances in robotics. In fact, the process has already begun. The shift from human jobs to robot jobs has been labelled the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” and it is well underway.
In their report The Future of Jobs, researchers stated that the jobs that will be hardest hit will be administration roles, office work, construction, manufacturing, arts, entertainment, extraction, household services and installation. In total, 5.1 million jobs will be taken out of the hands of humans over the next five years.
Yes, that means drones will eventually be delivering our mail and packages, we'll be able to acquire robots to cook and clean and even babysit and most reception areas in office places will be of the artificial intelligence variety.
It's not just artificial intelligence either. Researchers use the term "robotics" to refer to any computer or mechanical system that allows for the automation of jobs. That means everything from driver-less cars to those computer programs that answer our calls when we try and contact our service providers, both count.
There are, however, a handful of industries that will always be safe from the so-called "Robot Revolution" because we are still human, and sometimes need humans to do things. Steer towards these careers and hopefully the robots won't get you.
Humanoids have enough trouble dealing with human politicians let alone robotic ones. Politics is one of the industries earmarked as safe from the robot takeover. We want human politicians making seemingly human decisions. We want humans answering the phones of politicians and humans running their social media accounts.
Politics is all about relationships and while the robot population is welcome to organise it's own robotic leadership, humans will always need people running the show.
2. Fashion, health and beauty
Services such as fashion, health and beauty are pretty safe from robots due to the personal nature of the industry. We are influenced when it comes to what we wear and use on our bodies by images of other beautiful humans recommending them. Robots just won't do the trick.
Robots are welcome to manufacture these products but they'll never be figuring out strategies to promote them or modelling them.
3. Web-based businesses
Human-run internet businesses are considered a good option for a future career due to the flexibility they afford workers. Already many workers are leaving the rat race and opting to run businesses from home. While computing and automation play a role in the day-to-day running of such businesses, internet business come down to human ownership.
So if you've been sitting on an idea for an internet business now is the time to brush it off.
Sure robots will be making the robots but humans will be designing them and deciding what they get to do. Until the robots become self-aware and take over the world as per the Terminator movie series. However until this occurs, humans still get to invent the robots, design the robots and flip the on and off switches.
We're all for robot cleaners but when it comes to robot husbands and wives, it's just a little bit creepy, that is, unless you need some money. Article continues after this video.
It took humans to think of robots in the first place so this sort of makes sense. It was our emotions that led to robot pets that never die. Not the same as a live pet but definitely less vulnerable to child neglect.
5. Social work and psychiatry
There is a psychology app called TalkSpace that allows patients to consult with psychologists online and while this is deemed "robotic" there are still humans on the other end. Social work especially will always require humans because of the nature of issues social workers face, particularly when dealing with the young and the vulnerable.
There may be some comfort for some in confiding in an AI psychiatrist who coldly advises the best course of action based on a pre-loaded algorithm however most of us would give robot-run psychiatry and psychology a big old miss. We need someone who gets us, who relates to us, and who can lovingly advise us, as well as know when to pass the tissues.
6. Preschool teachers
Funnily enough reports single out preschool teaching as safe from robotics however don't go as far as to include all teaching. Maybe older children would be less totally freaked out by a robot teaching them in class. Preschool children are a different story. They are still so young, babies, and require human-to-human nurturing.
Preschool teachers are special and their role in our children's lives isn't as cut and dry as just teacher. They are parent-like in their guidance and thus totally safe from the robot revolution.
7. Makeup artists
I know many makeup artists who would love to give a few difficult brides to robot makeup artist but at the end of the day makeup artists and hair stylists are dealing with human emotion and are unlikely to have their jobs taken by robots. Makeup artists and hair dressers come under the healthy and beauty as well as psychiatry rules of robotics, and consider themselves totally safe from the robot revolution.
Part of the fun of getting these services is the chat during the service, the analysis, the trust, the compliments, all requiring human interaction.
8. Middle management
Any role that involves supervision of automated systems and robotics is deemed safe by those in the know. That includes middle management positions, particularly those that involve overseeing entire departments in manufacturing, administrations, internet businesses and any other service that may use robotic systems.
That means that aiming for promotions is important in the new tech age, in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, to aim high and go for those promotions as soon as you feel you are ready. Aim high!