For the past 40 years, the US unemployment rate falls to its lowest last July 2019, at 3.7%. Since 2010, unemployment had been falling continuously. Things were looking up. However, since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the number had risen. Even though the
unemployment rate dropped at the start of 2021, it is still above the pre-pandemic levels in February of 2020. We expect that this will continue to be above pre-pandemic levels until coronavirus dangers and fears are ultimately dealt with. This has a lot of
consequences for both workers and employers alike.
Over the past decades, technological advancements had transformed the very fabric of work and the global economy as a whole. The diffusion of digital technologies continues to permeate nearly all businesses and working individuals.
In the US alone, the use of digital tools has increased in 517 out of 545 jobs since 2002. This group of 545 jobs represents 90% of the entire US economy. Most of these involved significant changes in a broad range of lower-skilled jobs. Security
guards, construction laborers, and the like are now required to know some computer apps to perform their jobs.
The volume of jobs that can be completely automated with existing technology is below 5%. However, 30% of around half of all jobs today can be automated. This indicates that major automation across all job types is something inevitable. And that
workers have no other choice except to coexist with this technological change. As technology advances and gain more sophisticated performance capacities that level with or surpass human capacities, automation adoption will further increase.
One of the biggest gaps today is the widening disconnect between the academe and industry. This is generating a host of problems for both employees and employers. The primary factors that drive skills mismatches are low-quality education and systems.
Other factors include newly created forms of work organization, new sources of job creation, rapid technological development, and demographic change.
Soft skills like working in a team, punctuality, and communication had also been important. They’ve long considered only as secondary to hard skills. Such a status quo, however, is changing. Soft skills are becoming more vital nowadays. What caused this change?
Well, you guessed it right–automation, AI, and similar technologies are creating actual business cases that hard skills per se are no longer enough. On the other hand, soft skills make up for this void.
Many people had long been working independently since the dawn of time. But in today’s world, independent work is quickly evolving due to the vast support it gets from digital technologies. Also, because of the blow of the pandemic,
restrictions and protocols have forced and encouraged people to work remotely. This fueled the rise of alternative work setups, remote working, and the gig economy.
A career survey found that during the hiring process, 70% of employers use social media for screening job candidates. Around 43% of businesses use social media to check on current employees, while 34% have reprimanded or fired an employee
because of adverse social media posts. This is also becoming more popular in the entertainment industry with “celebrity cancellations”.