Millions of Women face the risk of losing their jobs amidst new trends in the job market. Automation, as well as the emergence of new technologies, is the latest trends posing significant challenges to women in the workforce.

Risk To The Female Workforce

McKinsey Global Institute in a new report indicates that up to 160 million may have to transition into new occupations or invest in new skills to avoid being rendered jobless. The acquisition of new skill sets, as well as transition into new occupations, could help women overcome the risk of being made redundant, as automation takes over.

Automation and technologies taking over comes at a time when women face a lot of challenges when it comes to retention. While men also face the risk of losing jobs, given the emerging trends, most of them remain well positioned to take over new posts more so in maturing economies.

Job loss could be much rampant due to the concentration of women in lower and middle-skilled jobs. Such jobs are the subject of increased focus by many organizations and companies looking to cut back on labor costs through automation as well as the deployment of emerging technologies. For instance, some Asian nations could close down garment, textile, and apparel manufacturing jobs by replacing humans with sewing bots.

“By 2030, we find that automation could free up approximately 30 percent of nurses’ time, meaning that they could spend less time on tasks such as processing paperwork and more time interacting with patients,” said MGI Senior Fellow Makala Krishnan.

Re-Skilling Women

Amidst the bleak future, for women in workplaces, there are things that leaders can do that will go a long way, in limiting the damage. According to Krishnan, associations need to partner governments and education providers to help in the implementation of re-skilling programs. Training and apprenticeships programs will also have to come into play to equip them with the much-needed skills for the changing job market.

Equipping women with new skill sets as well as empowering them is the only way organizations will be able to drive global growth and sustainability. Leaders will also have to ensure that women are not left behind as new technologies such as Artificial Intelligence take over. Leaders will also have to shift the negative views about women when it comes to STEM and tech jobs.

Displaying female role models taking over various sectors in educational settings as well as workplaces is another thing that leaders can do to encourage and motivate other women. Industry partnerships, as well as open online courses focused on emerging technology, should also come into play as a way of re-skilling women.

Embracing new technologies

However, not all is lost as some women have taken the high road and flexed their muscles in some fields that in the past were the preserve for men. Trisala Chandaria is one such woman that is making it in the world of artificial intelligence and machine learning as the CEO co-founder of software company Temboo.

According to MS Chandaria, it is high time that women embraced emerging technologies as a way of remaining competitive in the job market. According to the AI enthusiast, it is also high time that people adopted multi-faceted approaches when it comes to the implementation of new technologies.

“As the use cases for AI expand I think we’ll see more types of people working with AI. Applications in healthcare, government, wellness, environmental sciences and more will draw in all types of people, including women,” said MS Chandaria.


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