Where Have All The Jobs Come From?

It is fashionable to predict that millions of jobs will be lost in the workplace as technology reduces the need for workers. But one of the biggest challenges facing business is finding enough staff to fill the available vacancies.

A time of change

The economy is undergoing tremendous change as more jobs are created than destroyed even though such a pattern contradicts the opinions of many commentators. Technology always disrupts the way people work and in today’s economy new technologies are dramatically changing how companies operate. But business leaders quickly learn to adapt to new situations even at a time when unemployment levels are unusually low. The availability of jobs in the economy keeps surprising the experts, as predictions that technology will replace swathes of workers abound. But the growth of jobs is evident in the pubic and private sectors as the health service, education and a raft of other areas offer opportunities for those who wish to learn new skills and develop long-term careers. Government is also committed to investing in infrastructure as demand for workers escalates in all parts of the country. As a result there is a belief that staff shortages and skill gaps will continue to trigger problems as companies battle to expand. One of the most surprising aspects of the current jobs market is that there are prolonged shortages in almost every sphere of activity. And such shortages are growing despite the efforts of employers, government and training organisations to address the issue. Professional associations also strive to attract enough students to fill traditional roles in accountancy, law, nursing and new roles in areas such as data analytics and cyber security. At present and much to the surprise of many specialists in the economic forecasting industry huge numbers of jobs are being generated even though the economy is increasingly driven by technology.

Across all sectors

Manufacturing firms are struggling with staff shortages too, as they fill roles in respond to demand from home and overseas markets. In spite of introducing new technology to a whole range of production processes the clamour for additional employees continues. And in some cases companies are forced to move management and production capacity to other countries. Office workers are in demand too even as artificial intelligence and machine-learning increase efficiency and productivity. And the trend indicates a growing and continued need for all types of office workers regardless of the introduction of technology. Construction and general building work is booming too and while some functions are less affected staff shortages are increasing as project management and development costs soar to new levels.

So, recent predictions that technology will destroy the jobs market are exaggerated as demand for workers outstrips supply in all areas of the economy.