A realization that we haven’t made the smartest of career moves might have dawned on many of us when reading the news this week. Experts have predicted that 10 million British jobs — which equates to one in three roles — could be taken over by computers and robots.
Whilst honing our skills to make sure we are indispensable in the workplace is still essential, it’s equally important to remember that we are competing against computers as well as people. If you want to make sure a robot couldn’t do your job in the future, it’s vital to future-proof your career now.
Choose a Low-Risk Career
It goes without saying that some jobs are more at risk of automation than others. The positions that are at the highest risk are those in the sectors of administration, sales, transportation, construction, mining, energy and production.
When it comes to choosing a “safe” job, careers in healthcare have consistently proved to be among the most resilient. When the recession hit in 2008, healthcare jobs ranked among the most recession-proof careers. New research also lists the healthcare sector as one of the “safest” fields, along with computing, engineering, science, law, education and financial services.
Create a Professional Online Profile
You can’t argue with the facts. Ninety percent of employers are using social recruitment tools like LinkedIn to source talent and 78% of recruiters have hired through a social network. Having a fully developed online profile and an established network of contacts is a vital way of engaging with your industry. As well as keeping you alert to changes and new opportunities in your field, it’s a great way to get noticed by employers should it come to that in the future.
Start creating a professional profile online by building up your online personal brand to strengthen your authority in your chosen career field and make sure that you look the part. Once your social media profiles have been perfected, learn how to network effectively on social media. Launching an online portfolio or blog to showcase your work, whether that’s website designs, articles on key trends in your field, or even just a presentation about you and your skills, can also be a good move.
Adapt and Diversify to Survive
You don’t need to go back to school and change your career completely. However, being willing to adapt and able to diversify is essential to future-proofing your career. A recent study from PwC, which explores the need for better alignment between talent and opportunity, cites the need for individuals to be willing to embrace change and apply their skills in new places.
Take stock of your skills. Sixty-three percent of CEOs say availability of skills is their primary concern, so find areas where skills gaps are emerging in your sector and invest time in learning how to fill those gaps. You wouldn’t put all of your funds into one investment and the same rule applies here. When the time comes to make a change, you’ll have the skills in place to transfer roles. Adapt, diversify and survive.
About the Author: Ron Stewart has worked in the recruitment industry for 30 years, having owned companies in the IT, Construction and Medical sectors. He runs the Jobs4Group, and is CEO of Jobs4Medical.