Will our skills become obsolete?
IFRIDAYS

Will our skills become obsolete?

The iFriday on 27 April encouraged us to reflect on the future of work and how new technologies will affect our current expertise

From the need to constantly upgrade our knowledge in order to be able to use new applications, to the advantages that these offer us each day in our jobs: the future of our work is linked to technological innovation and will depend on our ability to adapt

 

Technological innovations are unstoppable, and this is true in the workplace as well. They are coming out earlier and earlier, and we have less and less time to adapt to them. So will our skills become obsolete?

This was the proposition being addressed at the most recent Sacyr iFriday on The Future of Work. This featured talks by Flor de Esteban and Idoia de Paz, who are partners at Deloitte and boast an extensive track record in the digital world and human resources, and Manuel Corizas, from Asepeyo.

Among other innovations which are set to enter our lives sooner rather than later, the speakers pointed to reinforcement learning for robots, the 360º selfie and self-driving trucks.

Contrary to the more pessimistic forecasts, de Esteban and de Paz highlighted that technology will provide more flexibility and power to workers, who in turn will have greater responsibility as regards their own training and development. “Training does not have to come from our employer”, noted Flor de Esteban, who added that this is not just a technological transformation but also a social and economic one. It will bring changes in the way we work and the very way we understand “work”. For example, full working days or working exclusively for just one company will disappear.

Manuel Cortizas spoke of the more positive impact of new technologies inside the working world, and outside it too. Very closely linked to safety and health, technological innovations are helping, among other things, to prevent injuries in physical jobs and intoxications in laboratories.

One of the machines being most researched is the exoskeleton, a wearable external structure which facilitates physical labour. Those attending the event observed the efficiency of an exoskeleton, which can lighten a load by up to 40%. Research is also underway on the use of exoskeletons by people with physical disabilities.

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