Factories And Plants

JULY 2021

Professionals of the future

"What profession to choose?" – our parents asked themselves when choosing a career. Our grandchildren will have to ask another question: "What kind of professional do I want to be?" Recruitment experts believe that single-track professional life is becoming a past, while futurologists are convinced that the labour market will feature many professions at the intersection of industries.
"The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn", – said American sociologist and futurologist Alvin Toffler. Continuing education is becoming a must for the modern employee and an integral part of the workflow.
We are talking not only about new technology. The point is that life is getting longer, and so are careers. We can't rule out that the professional life of today's senior pupils will last up to the age of 80.

For this reason, it's worth choosing a career taking into account the changes in the labour market that will happen in ten to fifteen years.

Robotisation and automation are considered to be the main factors that will change professional life. In a 2013 study, Oxford scientists predicted that robots would undertake half of all routine tasks by the early 2030s. The authors of The Future of Jobs 2021, a report prepared for the World Economic Forum, estimate that technological breakthroughs could put 85 million people out of work in five years. On the other hand, the same processes with prudent management will also create new job positions.
According to major employers surveyed by WEF experts in 2018, the labour market will change under the influence of the internet of things, mobile and web applications, virtual reality, blockchain, 3D printing and unmanned transport. Businesses recognize the likelihood of "certain staff reduction". First of all, it threatens those who lack flexibility.

In the late 1990s, the business community introduced the term soft skills, or flexible skills. It is something that helps us learn quickly, work in teams and solve challenging tasks. Researchers from Harvard University, Stanford University and the Carnegie Endowment found out that 85% of a person's success in a career depends on flexible skills.

The authors of the report "Future Skills", experts from Global Education Futures and WorldSkills Russia, believe that seven important skills listed below will be in demand in every field in the 21st century:
  • ability to concentrate – to process information and handle technology;
  • digital literacy – to work in a digital environment;
  • ecological mindset – to understand the integrity of the world and the role of an individual contribution to the ecosystem;
  • creativity – to have an unusual approach to routine activities;
  • emotional literacy – to understand ourselves and interact with others;
  • multiculturalism – to get on well with people;
  • learning capacity – to learn new skills.

Three skills from the list are not available for artificial intelligence so far. That means that professions that are difficult to teach a machine will live on for a long time. They require empathy, imagination, linguistic feeling, etc. The IIDF estimates that we can't do without scientists, robotics and oil and gas engineers, cybersecurity, database and blockchain specialists, teachers, managers and risk management specialists. There are several trends that help to predict the emergence of new professions which can be taken into account when planning a career or business development.
Life extension...
...and improvement of its quality. A variety of specialists will be needed for this purpose, including online therapists, personalized medicine and biohacking experts, medical robot operators, geneticist nutritionists, etc.

Environmental protection
In the coming years, any self-respecting company will have specialists in reducing the ecological impact, and any factory will have specialists in recycling.

We are increasingly dependent on data and even today we need professionals who can prevent cyber-attacks and deal with online fraud.

Development of materials science
Breakthrough technologies would not exist without new materials: alloys, composites, metamaterials. Innovative companies in any field will need specialists in additive technologies, quantum and biological materials science.

Digital development
Information technology penetrates all areas of life, so we will increasingly need relevant professionals from the digital linguist to the digital trash sorter.

The present-day industry at the crossroads of disciplines is biotechnology, which helps to produce valuable products using living cells and biological processes.

Сrossroads of disciplines
For example, biotechnology helps to produce valuable products using living cells and biological processes.

Transport and energy development
Success in these areas will require experts capable to manage them efficiently such as AI logisticians, smart road engineers, eco-analysts.

Lifelong learning
Existing methods are not suitable for lifelong learning. We need new tools and approaches. Every year there will be an increasing demand for educational consultants, authors of educational courses, developers of educational roadmaps, etc. The education system will also have to adapt to global changes in the labour market. One of them is failure to complete education because the driver of a career is the constant acquisition of new skills. The professionals of the future are already among us, and their main feature is that they are not afraid of new things.
E-mail: pressprom@mos.ru
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