Replaced by robots? How the shape of tomorrow’s workforce should influence today’s hiring decisions

replaced-by-robots - Woman working with a robot

We’ve all heard the warnings: the robots are coming to take our jobs. Or are they?

The rise of artificial intelligence and machine learning technology has sparked fear in some industries that roles will be made redundant. While it’s true that technology is increasingly automating tasks and taking over many repetitive roles, technology in fact has its best success when its working alongside your human workforce, complementing and augmenting capabilities, rather than replacing them.

What does this mean for your hiring strategy?

With straightforward, administrative work taken care of, it opens up time and headspace for your human workforce to instead take on tasks that require more complex problem solving, creative thinking, emotional intelligence, leadership, teamwork or intuition. These are the strengths that set humans apart, and that no robot can replace (at least, not yet!).

Looking to the future, that means the people who will be most valuable to your business are the ones with an ability to think outside the box, act with agility, build relationships, respond strategically and have strong emotional awareness. And while technology will increasingly give you access to data and analytical tools, the real power lies in having the right people to put the information to good use.

Hiring in the digital age

We’ve already seen that technology is democratising industries. Therefore businesses that stand out will be the ones who are using their workforce to deliver real value to their customers. With technology taking care of tasks, your workforce has heightened capacity to think big, while making customer engagements more personal. Businesses that invest in building a team of innovators, visionaries and bold decision makers will be the ones leading their industries.

Take the accounting industry for example. While compliance work for their clients is still a necessity, cloud technology solutions are increasingly taking care of these requirements. For accountants, that means shifting their focus to instead build a unique advantage around their high-value advisory services, while keeping themselves indispensable. Balancing a set of books takes a different set of skills to building out strategic financial plans – so therefore your hiring priorities may need to change.

For many businesses, this might mean widening their brief to put less emphasis on technical experience, and instead look at the interpersonal skills and attributes needed to really drive your business forward in the future. After all, many skills can be taught, but it’s harder to instill initiative to seek out opportunities or the creativity needed to bring them to life.

A workplace fit for the future

It might also mean becoming more flexible with the scope of the role. Connectivity is changing the way we work, with an increasing desire from many to work remotely or with greater flexibility of hours.

Being less restrictive on these requirements could open you up to a wider pool of talented candidates – such as those who choose to live outside of major cities, parents who prefer to work around school hours, or ‘digital nomads’ who want to travel while maintaining their career.

Have you considered what’s in store for your organisation’s future? The team at Eclipse is passionate about helping you achieve business success through your people. If you’ve got a big vision for your business, chat to us about finding the right people who can take it into the future.

Filed under: Articles
Date published