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Tech poses new challenges to workers

The rapid digitization of the economy poses enormous challenges for workers, businesses and the state, with employee skills becoming outdated within 2.5 to five years.

More specifically, research by the Digital Transformation Observatory of Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV), in collaboration with Deloitte, showed that in the European Union alone almost four out of 10 jobs will be significantly transformed by 2025 due to artificial intelligence and automation.

In this environment, working life will coexist with an ongoing training process, trying to keep up with rapid pace of developments.

The research highlights the reality that digital technologies create new professions and jobs, changing the mix of knowledge and skills that human resources must have, while also changing or eliminating professions.

Due to the new technologies, it is estimated that 40% of low- and high-skilled workers (in medicine, engineering, financial services etc) will have to retrain for at least six months, when at the same time the useful life of skills are significantly reduced.

Tellingly, the new model of organization for working life presupposes that skills such as imagination will prove more important and valuable than other more static skills.

This new environment is bringing about changes in workforce management, relationships and working conditions.

Already, in the US, 35% of the workforce is working on a temporary, project-supported employment contract.

It is also predicted that crowdsourcing will become the norm in the future, where tasks traditionally performed by an employee or contractor are outsourced to a large group of volunteers or a community, through open invitation. It is a form of collective internet activity which involves mutual benefits for both parties.

Moreover, as the coronavirus pandemic has already clearly demonstrated, new technologies are evolving human labor, the concept of “office-workplace” is being expanded to telework, and robotic systems and “smart workplaces” are automating routine tasks.