Technology has always had a drastic impact on the world. No matter how advanced certain technologies are, they always spur change. The technology of today is no different and the disruptions that will be caused due to it are potentially going to be stronger than anything ever seen before.
There are numerous industries that have been resistant to disruption for years, but the future of technology is going to cause these and all industries to change drastically. Whether it be small or large changes, technology will affect everything from the way work is performed to the employees themselves. Identifying changes that are already occurring now can serve as a roadmap for the future of disruption.
New Career Paths in Non-Tech Industries
Prior to the development of technology, a factor that made industries unique was the fact that they all performed different tasks. Fields stayed separate because they didn’t have a wide overlap, but technology is bridging those differences by providing new overlapping career paths.
Specifically speaking, tech-based careers are opening up in non-tech fields. This change can be seen in the rise of job options such as becoming a UX designer. The number of websites has been growing for years now as online businesses have become far more prevalent. Companies that have nothing to do with a technology need to open up websites just to stay competitive, and then they need to hire professionals such as UX designers.
People of this profession are tasked with designing the aesthetics of websites and driving traffic to certain areas on the website. It is a field that requires an understanding of human psychology and technology, yet may be needed in industries where the main product isn’t anything tech-related. This change will have the effect of causing technology to penetrate industries from the inside out.
Online Education Will Change Employees’ Skillsets
An often overlooked aspect of technological disruption is how it changes the employees who work for companies. In the past, the only way to receive some sort of formal education was to attend in-person classes at a university or college and receive a degree. This also meant that the possible career paths one could follow were limited to the exposure they had.
In today’s day and age, education is made accessible to all via technology. For example, there is a myriad of accredited online trade schools that offer courses to students in tech-based fields that will become the future of most industries.
Top-rated trade schools such as Springboard offer deferred tuition to students and some trade schools don’t even begin charging tuition until the student graduates and lands a job. This is an era when any employee of any age can add new and relevant skills to their toolbox which will have the effect of making future employees far more versatile in the tasks they can handle. Technology will be the driving force behind this educational and, by extension, industry change.
When it comes to technology and its effect on the workforce, automation is likely the change most discussed today. With that said, the technology of today has barely scratched the surface of automation and what it could become.
Machine learning is a growing facet of technology that allows computers to learn from their past actions and improve automatically. This means that a computer can essentially be programmed to do anything and get better at that task as it continues. As a human worker, this change can be hard to compete with industries that mainly focus on computation and data entry. Jobs will be absorbed by technology, but new jobs arising from skills such as coding will replace the older career paths.
Coders will be needed to actually program computers and tell them what to do in certain situations. This change from automation will occur in most industries where the tasks human workers handle can be easily automated.
Technology can be an unpredictable beast and, as it continues to evolve, examining the changes visible today is one of the best ways to attempt to prepare for the widespread disruption that will occur. Employees themselves and industries as a whole will be affected by advancing technology and the future of work is poised to become something never seen before. With that said, there will always be a place for human workers in the workforce to power all of that technology.
Artur Meyster is the CTO of Career Karma (YC W19), an online marketplace that matches career switchers with coding bootcamps. He is also the host of the Breaking Into Startups podcast, which features people with non-traditional backgrounds who broke into tech.