Job loss is the new wave of disruption on the horizon after the pandemic disrupted everything. The war in Ukraine has broken globalization, and the next wave of upheaval will hit our jobs. Brace yourself for what’s coming, as 14 million jobs can vanish in the next five years. That’s the prediction of the World Economic Forum. They published a survey just ahead of May Day when workers around the world took to the streets.
In France, there were massive street protests by one million workers. Many of them opposed President Macron’s new pension policy. Women and men marched on Labor Day with a demand for better wages. They also demanded improved living standards and working conditions. But the job market is changing dramatically. We are in a period of disruption, and we have advanced warnings. But are we ready for what’s coming?
The report surveyed more than 800 companies around the world. It found that employers will create 69 million jobs by 2027. However, they’ll also eliminate 83 million jobs. So a job loss of 14 million. That many jobs will be lost. Employers will slash more jobs than create new ones. Technology will drive this change. AI will bring a sea change in the workplace. We are going to see impacts that are both positive and negative. It will create jobs for those who can develop and manage AI tools. But it will also take away jobs like those that involve record-keeping.
According to the World Economic Forum, 26 million record-keeping jobs are at risk. These jobs will no longer be there by 2027. So be certain to see technology creating big disruption. But not only disruption, slower economic growth, and higher inflation will also make a real impact on the job market.
Around the world, 60% of workers will need training, and 44% of worker skills need an update. So, many people want to upgrade their skills, but they have limited opportunities. The survey says that only 50% of employees have adequate access to opportunities.
What about India? Well, India will not be insulated from these changes. The World Economic Forum report predicts that the Indian job market will also see churn. New jobs will be created in emerging sectors like AI and machine learning, so the shift is quite clear for everyone. The question arises, are we ready to face it?
The answer is an obvious no; we’re not. There is a growing worldwide labor unrest. Dockworkers, rail workers, and public servants are all protesting. In 2021, there were just eight cases of protests and strikes at the world’s leading ports. Last year, this number shot up dramatically from eight to 38 – that’s a jump of almost 400 percent.
Why are so many workers angry? They’re deeply impacted by the growing inflation. They say their wages have been stagnant for decades. They want a raise. And we’ve seen this before. In the 1800s, there was a series of protests in Europe and US. Workers had a simple demand: they wanted their work hours reduced. They were working for 12 to 15 hours, and they wanted an 8-hour workday. This led to the first round of Mayday strikes in the U.S.