"AI will boost employment" contrary to popular fears: Survey

Survey of British companies shows AI driving employment growth, contradicting fears of job losses. Skills development key to harnessing AI's potential.

According to a recent survey conducted by recruitment giant Manpower Group, AI advancements are - contrary to fears of widespread layoffs - set to actually create more job opportunities.

Over half of British companies surveyed believe that AI will bolster their workforce in the next two years.

This optimistic outlook stands in contrast to reports of job cuts resulting from AI adoption.

Despite recent instances of workforce reduction due to automation, including BT's announcement of cutting 55,000 jobs, the surveyed employers expressed a positive sentiment.

Rahul Kumar, Director at Experis, the organisation behind the poll, pointed out that employers are increasingly recognising the need to hire personnel who possess the skills to effectively utilise AI and machine learning.

Such investments in talent development are expected to enhance creativity and operational efficiencies.

Shifting skills requirements

Employers acknowledge that the adoption of AI will necessitate a revised skill set among their workforce.

The survey indicates that businesses are eager to explore the potential of AI and understand how it can benefit their operations.

While AI adoption will lead to increased employment, it will demand a different skill set, reflecting the evolving nature of work in this new landscape.

Over two-thirds of the respondents expressed optimism about AI programs and technologies, such as ChatGPT, contributing positively to training and reskilling initiatives within their organisations.

The integration of AI is viewed as an opportunity to enhance workforce capabilities, empowering employees with new skills to adapt to the changing demands of the job market.

AI as a catalyst for workforce engagement

The survey findings suggest that businesses intend to leverage AI to attract and retain talent, rather than replacing human workers.

Additionally, two-thirds of bosses believe that AI adoption will improve overall staff engagement. 

While concerns regarding potential negative impacts on employment remain, employers demonstrate a strong belief in the potential of AI technologies to facilitate positive outcomes.

Job candidate perspectives

When it comes to job candidates, the survey reveals that three-quarters are comfortable with AI being used in the hiring process.

However, almost half strongly advocate for human review of their applications.

Moreover, only 40% of job hunters reported feeling at ease with virtual job interviews, highlighting the importance of striking the right balance between AI and human involvement in recruitment processes.

Companies recognise the need to adapt and invest in their workforce's skill sets to leverage the potential of AI technologies.

By embracing AI, businesses aim to enhance creativity, drive efficiencies and foster workforce engagement.

Balancing AI integration with human oversight and involvement remains crucial for organisations seeking to leverage the benefits of this transformative technology.

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