The job market is always evolving. If you’ve been working for more than a decade, then there are people doing jobs today that didn’t even exist when you started your career. It works in the opposite direction too, people are working in roles today that simply won’t exist within a generation.
This isn’t a new phenomenon, countless professions were once vital to the economy but are now no longer needed. Before the advent of alarm clocks and double-glazing, workers would be awoken every morning by a “knocker-up” who would go from street to street, knocking on doors and shouting to get people to wake up in time for work.
Whenever a profession like this is lost, the workers within it have a choice, they can either go on to find employment elsewhere or they can go into retirement. Usually, it will only be the older workers that can leave the job market, those that are younger will have to reskill and get a different job.
Since the industrial revolution, technology has been replacing people in a whole host of different roles. Today, that trend is not changing, it’s just that different jobs are now at risk. Recent research suggests that the odds of a driver being replaced by a robot sometime shortly is close to 100%.
It’s not all doom and gloom though. As technology does away with old jobs, it creates new ones, often in roles creating or serving the new machines.
In regard to the same, you can read about: 9 Places to Get Technology Degree!
This is why it has never been so important for workers to learn digital skills, even if they aren’t necessary for the work they currently do.
Skills for the Future
Learning digital skills like coding or digital marketing may not be particularly useful for a role on a factory assembly line, but they will come in handy if you want to transition into another job.
You might want to develop yourself now so that you can find a new job anyway, or you might enjoy the work you already do but want a safety net should the time come for a robot to step into your shoes.
Either way, learning digital skills could serve you well in the future when looking for a different job.
Digital Skills Are Transferable
Like many other skills, many digital ones are transferable to different tasks and job roles. This means that even if you learn how to use a particular type of software or how to code in one programming language today, you’ll be able to transfer much of this experience to a different application or language in the future.
This is because the basic concepts are the same. If you learn to understand variables and how to manipulate them in PHP, it will be easier for you to do the same in C++ or Java. Programming skills will make it easier for you to join a development team or even go it alone as a freelancer.
Similarly, knowing how to create complex spreadsheets in Microsoft Excel will give you a big head start if you have to learn how to use Google Workspace.
Most Jobs Will Require Digital Skills in the Future
Even if you don’t plan on getting a job as a programmer, a digital marketer, or an IT technician in the future, there’s a good chance you will still need digital skills for other jobs.
Those that work in construction use computers to access drawings, update models and even operate some machinery, so they need the skills to operate these applications and devices.
Almost every office job in the world requires you to use a computer, as do many jobs you may not have considered, such as truck driver, police officer, firefighter, and courier. This is because, while a large portion of the role is physical, each employee still needs to interact with the organization’s management systems to update records, access information, and use specialist tools.
The prospect of jobs being lost to machines seems pretty scary, but it isn’t all doom and gloom. Those people that are agile and flexible enough to adapt to a changing jobs market will have little trouble finding a new career, even if it is completely different from what they did before. One way to stack the odds of this happening in your favor is to begin learning digital skills now.