The fear of artificial intelligence (AI) systems taking over jobs is a common concern among many people. This has led to hesitancy in using AI tools like text and image generators and a demand for stronger AI regulation. These concerns are not unfounded, as a recent study by the UK’s Department of Education found that 10-30% of occupations can be automated by AI, particularly white-collar jobs.
One example of AI technology that has the potential to replace jobs is chatbots. According to the study, AI chatbots like ChatGPT and Google Bard can take over jobs in telephone sales, solicitors, psychologists, teachers, and market and street traders and assistants. These chatbots are capable of handling routine and repetitive tasks, operating 24/7, and interacting with multiple customers simultaneously.
The study also identified the occupations most exposed to AI in general, beyond just chatbots. These include management consultants and business analysts, financial managers, accountants, and psychologists. These jobs are more susceptible to automation due to their association with clerical work in fields such as finance, law, and business management.
However, the study did not definitively state that AI will replace these jobs. Instead, it used the qualifier “most exposed to AI,” indicating that these jobs are likely to be aided or replaced by AI tools. AI and automation can handle routine tasks, allowing human workers to focus on more complex and challenging tasks that require deeper insight, empathy, or decision making.
Healthcare serves as an example of how AI can enhance the work of professionals rather than replace them. AI can assist in diagnosing tumors through complex imaging, but the final decisions and diagnoses still require human doctors to consider all relevant patient information.
Occupations that involve manual work and skilled labor are least exposed to AI tools. This includes sports players, roofers, construction workers, plasterers, and steel erectors.
To avoid being replaced by AI, workers can adapt by leveraging AI to enhance their roles. AI tools like chatbots can assist in creating, summarizing, and translating text, allowing human workers to revise and customize the content. AI tools such as ChatGPT, Copilot, and Bard can also generate article outlines and summarize large documents in seconds.
Furthermore, these tools can quickly answer specific queries without the need for internet searches or database searches. For instance, an AI chatbot can be trained on company materials and data to provide tailored responses.
In conclusion, while there are legitimate concerns about AI replacing jobs, it is important to recognize that AI can also enhance the roles of human workers. By leveraging AI tools, workers can save time, focus on personalized tasks, and provide in-depth service to customers. It is crucial to find the right balance between AI automation and human expertise to maximize the benefits of this technology.