Digital Transformation

Employees fret for their futures as AI marches on

By John Glenday | Reporter

Kantar Media

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Artificial Intelligence article

April 20, 2018 | 3 min read

Humans are looking nervously over their shoulders at their computers in increasing numbers according to the latest research to be published by Kantar Insights, which found that 83% of Britons now believe artificial intelligence will make them redundant in the workplace.

Robots, automation and machine learning are fast making inroads within factories and customer service, shrinking the exclusive domain which people have thus far enjoyed while sparking concern for what the future holds.

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Employees fret for their futures as AI marches on

The latest Lightspeed UK survey found that 27% of respondents believed that AI will be encroaching on their employment within their own lifetimes - although 44% felt that it would be the next generation which bears the brunt of any changes and 13% didn’t think the AI revolution would ever take off.

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In manufacturing specifically it was a different story however with 90% convinced machines would rule the roost, with 23% expecting this changeover to happen in the ‘near future’.

These fears translated into genuine concerns about AI displacing humanity from decision making with 40% expressing themselves to be extremely or fairly concerned by this prospect and a further 47% ‘slightly’ concerned. Just 14% were ambivalent about their new robotic overlords.

Such shifts paint a bleak picture of the future according to most with 56% fearing it will fuel poverty. Although 12% eyed a potential ‘opportunity’ to grab more leisure time and 32% believed new hi-tech jobs would emerge to take the place of lost low-skilled labour.

Reuters has already built a 'cybernetic newsroom' to harness AI to give it an edge in data-heavy reporting such as finance and sports.

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