When you think about the future of your career, are you excited … or filled with dread? If you’re not a big fan of change, the latter is understandable. The coming years will bring big changes to jobs, skills, office culture, and of course technology. PayScale’s latest report, Future Work Force, shows you what to expect — and how to harness these changes to boost your career to the next level.
If you’re one of the folks who thinks of the future with more trepidation than excitement, chances are that you’re afraid the robots are coming for your job. That’s not a crazy fear — research shows that up to 47 percent of American jobs are vulnerable to automation. The key is to figure out if your skills are ones that a robot can learn. If so, it might be time to build your skillset and future-proof your career.
“Workers cannot compete with computers when it comes to the tasks that machines do best,” writes Sean Leslie in Prepared for the Jobs of the Future, Are You? “Instead, the most secure and valuable jobs of the future will require skills we have been refining over the course of millions of years.”
Jobs that require emotional intelligence and creativity are where humans have the edge over robots. Flexibility will also be key to building a career in the future, as today’s jobs disappear, evolve, or merge with other jobs into hybrid roles.
Future Career Trajectories
Forget what you’ve heard about job hopping, and how it will kill your career. The career path of the future is far from a straight line, and workers should expect to change jobs and careers frequently, reskilling along the way. Even job interviews will change, thanks to advancements in technology that might one day make it possible for you to beam into your next job interview, Princess Leia-style.
Technology will change not only how we interview and how we work, but what our workspace looks and feels like, too. The office of the future has lights that turn off and on by themselves, drones that deliver the mail and keep tabs on workers, and office ID badges that double as Big Brother. On the upside, you probably can put your suit in storage — chances are, you won’t need it, with the casual new dress code your company is likely to adopt (if they haven’t already).
Of course, there’s also the chance that you won’t be in the office at all. Most office workers can do their job from home, and increasingly, they are. And if the robots do come for our jobs, despite our best efforts, we might all wind up spending a lot more time at home, bolstered by Universal Basic Income.
For more on the workplace of the future, check out Future Work Force.
Tell Us What You Think
What do you think the future will hold for your career? We want to hear from you. Tell us your thoughts in the comments or join the conversation on Twitter.