How to Not Lose Your Job to AI: Don't Be An Endpoint
3 min read
The fear of the AI Apocolypse, especially from an employment perspective is real. Millions of people who lost their jobs during the Pandemic were replaced by AI and robots. Politicians from around the world, have touted plans to fight AI automation from the banning of self-driving cars to taxing large tech companies to fund universal basic income. But what can you do to avoid being a casualty of artificial intelligence and machine learning?
First off, what do I mean when I use the term "AI Apocolypse"? The AI Apocolypse is essentially the loss of jobs with automation that's powered by AI. This is nothing new as we have seen time and time again in history that job loss happens when automation happens. We saw this during the 2000s when websites such as Expedia and Priceline destroyed the jobs of travel agents. During the 1990s, We saw job loss for accountants with the rise of accounting software. The job with the greatest decline in the next decade is of jobs where the primary role is data entry. Why have a person enter in data into a computer when a computer system can just share that data with another computer system? If we look back in history, these jobs were lost because these people were human endpoints.
An API endpoint in the software world is how two pieces of software can be connected. A lot of humans have jobs that essentially turn them into human endpoints for software. If you communicate with software as your job, you are a human endpoint. Why can't a piece of software communicate with another piece of software through a software API endpoint without the human? In the past, low-skilled jobs that had routine tasks were easy to automate away with software, but with the rise of AI, even jobs with managerial responsibilities can be automated away. Amazon manages its contractors with their AI. Also take a look at ride-sharing apps. Traditionally the cab company's dispatcher would decide and coordinate which cab picked up which customer if you called in for a cab. With these AI powered ride-sharing apps, the drivers are being managed and directed by an algorithm. The individuals in these roles are just moving data from one system to another.
Thus, to avoid losing your job to AI and automation, you must evolve your skillset and job responsibilities so that you are no longer just a human endpoint waiting to be automated away with a software endpoint. Travel agents and accountants still exist today. The ones that did survive evolved beyond being a human endpoint. They were able to add humanity and creativity to their work that software was not able to easily replicate. Humans are creative problem solvers and are not meant to do robotic work. If you want to compete with a robot without adding creativity and humanity to your work, I wish you good luck as you try to out-hustle the robot.
Check out the jobs with the greatest decline for the next 10 years from the Bureau of Labor Statistics .