HR Management

Robots Aren’t Taking Over: 86% of Employers say Digitization Will Increase or Maintain Headcounts

Developing the best blend of technical skills and soft skills is the solution to the Skills Revolution for individuals and employers alike. As technology transforms organizations, skills needs are changing rapidly and companies are struggling to find the talent they need.robot

ManpowerGroup’s new report—Robots Need Not Apply: Human Solutions in the Skills Revolution—surveyed 20,000 employers across 42 countries on the impact of automation on headcount, the functions most impacted and the soft skills that are both of greatest value and hardest to find. The report finds that as companies go digital, in the near-term most will need more people, not fewer.

Eighty six percent of employers globally say their headcount will increase or remain flat in the next 2 years because of automation. Looking inside organizations, the impact varies by function: IT comes out on top as organizations invest in digital skills and frontline and customer-facing functions follow close behind. In contrast, administrative and office functions expect the greatest decrease in headcount as a result of automation.

Overall, the rise in consumerism and the value companies now place on customer service is increasingly evident in the digital world and human strengths are more valued than ever before. More than half of companies surveyed say communication skills, written and verbal, are their most valued soft skill followed by collaboration and problem solving.

“Digitization is happening at an unprecedented pace and every industry and function will be impacted,” says Jonas Prising, ManpowerGroup Chairman and CEO—in a press release. “This is good news for people—providing they have the right skills mix to augment rather than compete with technology. As employers, we need to identify skills adjacencies that create clear career paths for people, from this job to that job, and we must develop faster reskilling programs with shorter bursts of on-the-job, experiential training. …”

Prising adds, “Helping people upskill and future-proof themselves will be the defining challenge of our time. Identifying in-demand skills and providing access to employment is the solution for all of us in the Skills Revolution.”

The best blend of high-tech and high-touch will be the combination of core human strengths with technical and digital know-how. Robots Need Not Apply: Human Solutions in the Skills Revolution offers practical recommendations to help employers adjust their workforce strategy to prepare for digital transformation.  To learn more or to download the report, click here.