Published: 17th March 2021
Survey suggests that two in five global workforce believe their job will be obsolete within 5 years
The survey, conducted between January 26 and February 8, involved 32,500 respondents from 19 countries, including India and China
Nearly 40 per cent of the global workforce believe their job will be obsolete within 5 years due to accelerated automation in view of the pandemic, according to a survey by PwC.
The survey, conducted between January 26 and February 8, involved 32,500 respondents from 19 countries, including India and China. It also pointed out that the global workforce sees the shift to remote working as just the tip of the iceberg.
Reflecting the fact the pandemic has accelerated a number of workforce trends, the survey found 60 per cent are worried that automation is putting many jobs at risk; 48 per cent believe traditional employment won't be around in the future and 39 per cent think it is likely that their job will be obsolete within 5 years. "However, this is not a counsel of despair, as 40 per cent of workers say their digital skills have been improved through the prolonged period of lockdown, and claim they'll continue to embrace training and skill development," it said.
As many as 77 per cent are ready to learn new skills or completely re-train and 74 per cent see training as a matter of personal responsibility. "And, 80 per cent are confident they can adapt to new technologies entering their workplace, with a large majority of those asked in India (69 per cent) and in South Africa (66 per cent) saying they are 'very' confident," said the survey.
The study also found that 49 per cent of respondents were focused on building entrepreneurial skills with an interest in setting up their own business. PwC said respondents included workers, business owners, contract workers, students, unemployed people looking for work, and those on furlough or who were temporarily laid off.
The survey involved 19 countries: Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Kuwait, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Poland, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, the UAE, the UK and the US. The survey also found that 50 per cent of workers "say they've faced discrimination at work which led to them missing out on career advancement or training".
As per the study, 13 per cent reported missing out on opportunities as a result of ethnicity and 14 per cent of workers experienced discrimination on the grounds of gender, with women twice as likely to report gender discrimination as men. Three-quarters of workers globally (75 per cent) said they want to work for an organisation that will make a 'positive contribution to society. "This feeling was especially acute in China (87 per cent), India (90 per cent), and South Africa (90 per cent)," the survey added.
The survey concluded that remote working will persist post-lockdown. PwC is a network of firms in 157 countries providing advisory, assurance and tax services.