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Will You Still Be Employed in 2030?

Will You Still Be Employed in 2030?

Ten years ago, the phrase ‘unexpected item in the packing area’ would have been meaningless. Today, it’s a frustratingly familiar accompaniment as we scan and pack our shopping bags. The trend for increased automation is set to continue as Price Waterhouse Cooper (PwC) predicts 30% of UK jobs could be at risk of mechanisation within the next 15 years.  This blog explores what automation is, which jobs it will impact and which jobs are likely to be safe.

What is Automation and Who Will It Impact?

Automation has historically been thought of as the process of removing humans from production through the use of machines. We’re used to seeing robots in car manufacturing plants, the aforementioned self-service checkouts and, on the news, unmanned drone planes.  This kind of automation tends to threaten manual jobs with PwC stating that “the most exposed sectors include[e] retail and wholesale, transport and storage, and manufacturing”. 

But with advances in artificial intelligence, highly skilled, knowledge-based roles could also be impacted.  At particular risk are those roles that undertake rule-based activities, such as accounting or law, elements of which can be replicated by computer programmes.

Three Jobs at Risk of Automation

Lawyers

In recent years, law firms have introduced new technologies to automate some of the more routine legal work.  For example, software that extracts data from the Land Registry and checks the details to saves legal teams several weeks of mind-numbing, manual fact checking.  While more senior legal roles are safe for now, there’s predicted to be less demand for junior lawyers and paralegals.

Farmers

Farming has long embraced new technology to make what was once back-breaking work easier and more efficient.  In this instance, with Brexit looming, farmers may need to replace 90,000 seasonal EU workers with machines, something that’s already happening in other countries.  For example, strawberry picking machines are in operation in Spain and robotic apple pickers are being used in the US to minimise the workforce required. 

This has inspired researchers in the UK to explore whether wheat can be produced without human intervention. With the average age of a farmer at 59, while automation threatens certain jobs, it might be necessary to ensure the future of the UK’s food production.

Taxi Drivers

Uber have been testing driverless cars for some time citing the potential of their project “to save millions of lives and improve quality of life for people around the world.”  Traditional taxi drivers are already fighting Uber’s gig-economy service and driverless cars could strike another blow to an industry that employs around 300,000 people in the UK.

Three Safe Jobs

Jobs of the future will require three core elements: qualifications in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM); creativity; and emotional intelligence.  Here are three jobs that reflect this range of skills and will likely be safe in 2030.

Marketing, design and communications

While machines are good at understanding rules and assimilating work based on rational instruction, creativity isn’t easy to replicate.  This means roles in marketing, design and communications will be safe.  According to website, ‘Will Robots Take My Job?’, marketing managers, writers and designers have a 1.4%, 3.8% and 8.2% chance of being replaced by robots respectively.

Robotics Engineers and Technicians

With the rise of the machines comes more jobs in support of this new technology.  Those who have studied STEM subjects will be able to secure this kind of work.  Government and business are encouraging more children to take up these subjects in order to plug the existing skills gap.  In the short-term, these roles may need to be filled with overseas hires.

Psychiatrists, nurses and doctors

Roles that require emotional intelligence and a human touch aren’t jobs that robots or AI are likely to be equipped for.  However, healthcare professionals will continue to rely heavily on new technology as research and development in this sector continues.  With existing staff shortages within the NHS and the potential for Brexit to make matters worse, training to become a healthcare professional, is a safe bet.

Possibility or Threat?

Automation may sound like it poses a threat to the future, but in reality, jobs are likely to change shape rather than be completely replaced by new technologies.  For any business owner impacted by automation, there are a number of people issues to be considered such as workforce planning, training and job redesign. 

If you need specialist HR support to review your people strategy in the face of technological change, get in touch by calling us on 0330 555 1139 or via email at .

 

Overcoming the Biggest HR Issues for Not for Profits

Overcoming the Biggest HR Issues for Not for Profits

With limited resources and additional scrutiny, managing employees at not for profit organisations comes with extra challenges. Being able to understand and empathise with the difficulties service users face, attracting and retaining the right workforce to do this is key to delivering your mission. As is the effective management of your volunteer workforce.  Get these critical factors wrong and it makes it difficult for you to operate effectively. This article explains how to overcome three of the biggest human resources issues faced by not for profit organisations.   

Diversity

The problem

According to the NCVO, the typical voluntary sector employee is predominantly female, slightly older and university educated.  While the trend towards an ageing workforce is in line with other UK businesses, the racial profile of voluntary organisations is not. 

Only 9% of employees in not for profit organisations are non-white, whereas public and private sector work-forces are more diverse with 11% and 12% from black and ethnic minorities respectively. Add to this the fact that only 35% of the charity sector workforce is male and it’s clear there’s a diversity issue.

Why is this a problem? Not for profit organisations that service diverse communities need to interact with a broad base of service users and understand and reflect the needs of the group. Charities that employ a range of people from different backgrounds are better equipped to do this and they also benefit from more diverse thinking.

The solution

Bringing new blood into organisations relies on your recruitment strategy.  If you often recruit via word of mouth or through referrals from existing employees, you’re likely to get CVs from people similar to your current personnel.  Try advertising on diverse job boards to attract different demographics or use social media to target and drive specific populations to the careers section on your website.

Assess which jobs genuinely require a degree; where it’s not necessary to have one, remove this hurdle from your person specifications to open the door to different people.  It can be tricky to get this right and remain legal, so work with a specialist HR provider to support you.

Attracting and Retaining Not For Profit Talent

The challenge

Once upon a time, not for profit could rely on commitment to their cause to attract and retain employees.  But, in recent years, the landscape has shifted with industry-wide data suggesting that charities are starting to compete with private sector benefit packages.  While salaries remain lower than in other sectors, ensuring your reward package is competitive without breaking the bank is key.  

The solution

Rather than guessing what the market pays, source voluntary sector market data to provide you with the salary and benefit information you need.  There are many benefits to paying for sector specific data:

 

-It stops you over or under paying on salaries and benefits so you can attract and retain effectively
-You can spot trends and changes in the data so you can lead, lag or keep abreast of the market in line with your HR strategy
-By comparing reward packages with other not for profits, you’re competing with the right organisations on the same financial basis
-You’ll benchmark or job evaluate roles in a fair and consistent manner
Market data provides a solid rationale when gaining reward package approval from trustees and compensation boards

 

As with other organisations, people don’t join and stay solely for pay and benefits.  Not for profits have historically been good at providing employees with flexible working and job-sharing arrangements and career breaks.  It’s important to maintain broader benefits like these as they allow you to take a strategic Total Reward approach that can be designed to appeal to the right employee demographic. 

Managing a Volunteer Workforce

The problem

It’s estimated that 14.2 million people formally volunteer at least once a month in the UK.  Managing this workforce is critical, but as with any organisation, managing people is not straight forward. Volunteering Waikato lists ten of the most common volunteer complaints, five of which are people management problems:

-lack of organisation
-being asked to do something other than what the volunteer signed up for
-being asked to take on extra jobs
-volunteers don’t feel they’re making a difference
-volunteers are micro-managed and not trusted

The solution

At the heart of the solution are good people management skills. While salaried employees turn up to work (in part) for pay, volunteers do not.  This means you need to treat them even better than employees.  Because the work itself is the primary reason they volunteer, get everything around this right and you’ll keep them coming back.

Consider writing volunteer job descriptions so people know what’s expected of them.  This will also help your volunteer managers or team leaders to assign appropriate work.

 

-Get organised
No-one likes to give up their time only to find it’s being wasted through poor organisation. Ensure volunteers know where to be, what they’ll be doing, when and how, to maximise use of this resource and make them feel you respect their time.

-Specify job roles
Consider writing volunteer job descriptions so people know what’s expected of them. This will also help your volunteer managers or team leaders to assign appropriate work.

-Recognise and engage
Volunteers have offered to work for you for free because they believe in what you do. Help them feel that their time has been well spent by:
explaining how that day’s activities contribute towards the organisation’s overall mission
thanking every person every time for their help
sending out letters or cards of thanks annually
hosting an annual social for volunteers to thank them for their contribution

-Training and support
It can be tempting for team leaders to feel they need to micro-manage volunteers because they’re new or considered to be less effective than a full-time employee. Where necessary, training volunteers will ensure your organisation manages risk and governance issues effectively and will help project leaders feel more comfortable with the skills of their workforce. Invest in training your managers and team leaders to help them find different ways to manage people. Combined with improved organisation and volunteer job descriptions, those leading activities will feel they can take a more hands-off approach.

It can be tempting for team leaders to feel they need to micro-manage volunteers because they’re new or considered to be less effective than a full-time employee. Where necessary, training volunteers will ensure your organisation manages risk and governance issues effectively and will help project leaders feel more comfortable with the skills of their workforce. Invest in training your managers and team leaders to help them find different ways to manage people.  Combined with improved organisation and volunteer job descriptions, those leading activities will feel they can take a more hands-off approach.

Deal with these key people issues to make your not for profit organisation an employer of choice with room for people from all walks of life.  Not only will you attract and retain the best employees and volunteers, but you’ll have a motivated workforce who are ready and able to serve your beneficiaries.

If you need specialist HR support for any of the issues covered in this article, get in touch by calling us on 0330 555 1139 or via email at hello@crossehr.co.uk.