If you're a white-collar worker, now might be a good time to assess your career options — with new research from Forrester predicting that 2.4 million US jobs are expected to be replaced by generative AI by 2030.
Those with salaries over $90,000 stand the greatest chance of having their job replaced altogether, with legal, scientific, and administrative professions being identified as the highest risk.
In a rare win for creatives, the report found that artistic fields are much more likely to incorporate AI into their current roles, while blue-collar professions in construction and transportation may remain virtually untouched. Read on to see what Forrester's report reveals about the fate of your job:
White Collar Workers: AI is Coming For Your Job
The AI takeover may not be as bad as once feared — unless you're working a white-collar job — according to a new report by IT research company Forrester.
The company's 2023 Generative AI Impact Forecast predicts that 2.4 million US jobs will be replaced by 2030, a dwarfed figure in comparison to the 300 million full-time jobs that Goldman Sachs forecasted would be lost to automation in April of this year.
However, those on salaries of $90,000 or more will be bearing the brunt of AI much more than those on lower incomes due to the high automation potential of professional tasks.
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For example, the research found that 78% of legal occupations could become obsolete by 2023, with this potion dropping to 61% for science researchers and 57% for administrative roles.
Forrester's latest findings don't come as a major surprise, with mounds of previous research highlighting the impact AI will have on many white-collar workers. Yet, with the research company likening the deep social challenges that may result to those experienced in the postindustrial Rust Belt, the report is still likely to raise alarm bells for many US high-salaried workers.
But fortunately, not all job replacements will come at a loss. The research firm also predicts that the technology will be able to fill many workplace gaps that have existed in frontline industries since the 2020 pandemic.
Creative Industries Are Safe for Now
Forrester's research also found that generative AI is likely to influence a grand total of 11 million jobs by 2023, making the tech 4.5 more likely to reshape a role than stamp it out altogether.
Generative AI is expected to transform jobs in a number of ways, including by giving workers opportunities to upskill and retrain, as well as simplifying business workflows through automation.
According to the report, creative professionals like poets, writers, and editors are less likely than white-collar workers to have their jobs replaced altogether as their skill sets are harder to replicate. Instead, Forester predicts that the nature of these jobs will evolve as AI tools become further embedded in our daily practices.
How to Get AI Implementation Right
AI is already uprooting the business landscape in major ways, with our own research revealing that 47% of business leaders are currently considering using AI over new hires.
But while failing to embrace AI fast enough is a valid concern, doing so without adequate guardrails could open your business up to numerous risks including poor AI performance, negative employee experiences, and security issues.
While it's impossible to account for every contingency, to sidestep major pitfalls Forrester outlines the importance of building an informed generative strategy. According to the research firm, here are some major factors businesses should consider:
- Invest in the robot quotient (RQ) – RQ is a measure that evaluates your company's readiness for robotic process automation. Self-assessing your team under this criteria will help you focus on which areas will benefit the most from AI automation.
- Prioritize augmentation – Enhancing roles with AI tools instead of replacing roles with technology will have a much more beneficial outcome on your business.
- Identify which jobs will benefit from AI the most – AI doesn't assist all roles evenly. Analyzing which jobs will benefit the most will ensure that experience and precision don't get lost in your transformation efforts.
- Hire or upskill to fill AI gaps – Most companies currently lack adequate AI know-how, so hiring or upskilling workers with relevant skills like prompt generation will be a solid return on investment.
To learn more about how to get AI implementation right, read our guide on important AI principles, guidelines, and frameworks to consider in 2023.