Automation To Axe 7 Lakh Jobs, But Not High-skilled Jobs

by CXOtoday News Desk    Sep 07, 2017

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Almost one-third of ‘low-skilled’ jobs, about 7 lakh, will be lost on account of automation in Indian IT by 2022 says US-based research firm HfS Research. However, the report also predicts the number of ‘medium-skilled’ and ‘high-skilled’ jobs to go up by 1 lakh and 1.9 lakh, respectively. Worldwide, HfS Research said that by 2022, the IT industry would see a net decrease of 7.5% in headcount with countries like the US, UK and India taking a hit.

The research firm cites the aggressive uptake of RPA (Robotic Process Automation) and AI as the primary reasons for the reduction in headcount. It adds that RPA is merely accelerating the elimination of rote jobs while increasing the need of high-skilled jobs by 57%.

According to the report, ”Companies are taking time to build the impact of RPA into service contracts. Time is on our side to manage the transition and train staff for the future. The next five years we can manage, it’s the five after that when the impact on labor becomes much more challenging.”

Also Read: Automation May Replace 6.4 lakh Low-Skilled IT Jobs By 2021

The firm has increased the predicted low-skilled job loss numbers from 6.4 lakh at the end of 2021 in a report published last year to 7 lakhs by 2022 in the latest report. In this scenario, the report predicts that 20% of the total workforce needs to be re-skilled to be employable.

According to Nasscom, the IT industry is expected to recruit 20 percent less this year and this is primarily due to automation. Industry experts have voiced concerns over the probable job loss due to automated technologies demanding holistic approach in recruitment policies of enterprises. 

While entry-level coding jobs will see a cut, there will demand for skills in robotics, artificial intelligence (AI), the digital space, biotech, nanotech, smart technologies, etc. Nasscom president R Chandrasekhar said that though there may be job losses due to the automation, it will also provide new employment opportunities in various other sectors.