Report: US employers would gladly replace workers with AI technology


Beautiful.ai, which uses artificial intelligence to create corporate presentations and reports, polled 3,000 executives in management positions for “The Future of AI in the Workplace: A Survey of American Managers,” conducted Feb. 20-23 of this year. — Photo by Possessed Photography on Unsplash

Feeling dispensable in a world of artificial intelligence?

Your fears are not unfounded. A new report from beautiful.ai shows 66% of workplace managers would gladly replace employees with AI tools if the technology produced comparable work.

69% said it would “be financially beneficial” to replace employees with AI technology, with 68% citing lower payroll costs.

“Companies are beginning to accept and adopt AI into their workflows to improve efficiency and increase output,” the report said. “In fact, 95% of those interviewed said that their teams have already started using AI tools.”

Beautiful.ai, which uses artificial intelligence to create corporate presentations and reports, polled 3,000 executives in management positions for “The Future of AI in the Workplace: A Survey of American Managers,” conducted Feb 20-23 of this year.

Of the 3,000 managers polled, 34% are preparing for the adoption of AI tools by educating their employees, while 22% are self-testing AI tools they feel may be useful in the workplace.

Additional findings:

  • 90% of managers believe AI tools will grow in popularity as layoffs continue during uncertain economic times
  • 75% believe their employees fear the use of AI tools will lead to their eventual firing
  • Managers say cybersecurity is the biggest cause for concern as it relates to the use of AI tools

Another report from NetVoucherCodes says California employees are in for a double whammy because the Golden State has the largest number of at-risk jobs.

NetVoucherCodes compiled data for 199 jobs from each state using usawage.com‘s Top 200 Popular Jobs in 2022. ChatGPT, one of the newest AI technologies to enter the workplace, was then asked for each job’s relative risk from AI, automation, and the likelihood of AI increasing each job’s productivity.

ChatGPT gives strikingly human-like responses to user queries and can collate information in seconds that would otherwise take hours to gather.

The NetVoucherCodes report shows 321,900 California jobs are at high risk of being replaced by AI technology, while another 1.2 million jobs are at medium risk. In the realm of automation, more than 2 million Golden State jobs are at high risk and nearly 4 million are at medium risk.

On a broader scale, the company predicts that more than 15.7 million US jobs will be enhanced by AI to boost productivity, although 19.4 million jobs will be replaced in the process.

NetVoucherCodes lists the top 10 US jobs at high risk of being replaced by AI:

  • Cashier (more than 3.3 million)
  • Customer service representative (more than 2.7 million)
  • Bookkeeper (991,047) IT support technician (690,525) Billing clerk (477,349)
  • HR assistant (384,826)
  • Paralegal assistant (336,250)
  • Compliance officer (334,340)
  • Claims assessor (314,300)
  • Executive assistant (304,678)

The report doesn’t give a timeline for when all of those jobs could be highjacked by technology, but the numbers indicate heavy employment losses are inevitable.

Amazon already has a deep foothold in the AI world. The company’s Amazon Fresh grocery stores in Southern California are equipped with “Just Walk Out” technology that’s based on AI, image recognition and sensors.

It allows customers to enter the store by scanning the in-store QR code in their Amazon app, using Amazon One, or by inserting a credit or debit card to open Just Walk Out gates.

Anything a shopper takes off the shelf is automatically added to their virtual cart, and whatever they put back comes out of it. When they’re finished shopping they simply scan or insert their entry method again to exit the store.

Tracy Brower, a sociologist and author of “The Secrets to Happiness at Work,” acknowledged that AI is precise and lightning fast while people can be “slow and plodding.” But in a recent guest article in Forbes, she said humans still hold some distinct advantages.

“Humans are creative – designing something from nothing, intuiting, inferring, adapting and functioning with nuance,” Brower said. “People are also uniquely curious – imagining, exploring and wondering.” – The Orange County Register/Tribune News Service

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