Thanks to digital transformation and the Fourth Industrial Revolution, it will be possible for the same output from ASEAN’s top six economies today to be produced using 28 million fewer workers by 2028.
Digital transformation will disrupt the workforce but its impact has never been truly quantified. Network vendor Cisco has decided to fix this situation by commissioning a study with Oxford Economics.
The report, Technology and the Future of ASEAN Jobs, forecasts how artificial intelligence (AI) in software, hardware and robotics will change the employment landscape among ASEAN’s six largest economies (ASEAN 6) by 2028.
Agriculture will be the hardest hit, where there is expected to be 6.6 million redundancies by 2028. Demand for skilled agricultural workers and elementary workers or labourers will drop, as these jobs can be replicated with the use of technology.
As AI becomes increasingly sophisticated, more applications will adopt it. This will affect industries where the level of skills required can be easily machine-learned to improve cost and productivity. In countries where technology adoption is rapid, jobs in contact centres or Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) may be at risk. “The Philippines is probably the market that will feel the effects of this the most, followed by Thailand and to some extent, Indonesia,” he said.