Goldman Sachs predicts that Artificial Intelligence (AI) could replace up to 300 million jobs globally. The investment bank’s report states that AI could automate 25% of the entire labor market, with 46% of tasks in administrative jobs, 44% of legal jobs, and 37% of architecture and engineering professions being at risk. However, AI is least threatening to labor-intensive careers like construction, installation and repair, and maintenance. The study also concludes that 18% of the global workforce could be automated with AI, with countries like the U.S., U.K., Japan, and Hong Kong being particularly vulnerable, with up to 28% of their workforces at risk.
Despite this, the report suggests that there is potential for a mutually beneficial relationship between workers and AI. Occupations that are partly exposed to automation will use their free time to increase their productivity at work. Displaced workers might also see higher levels of labor demand due to nondisplaced workers becoming more productive. The report argues that displaced workers will become reemployed in jobs that emerge as a direct result of widespread AI adoption.
However, the potential for AI to displace 300 million jobs is a primary concern for workers and tech moguls alike. Notable names in the industry, like Steve Wozniak, Rachel Bronson, and Elon Musk, co-signed an open letter to pause AI experiments, fearing that AI development is moving too quickly for humans and can topple our society as we know it.
In early May, IBM announced that it plans to replace almost 8,000 jobs with AI, with human resources professionals being the first to go. Many companies within the tech sphere have changed their company goals and slashed jobs as they all scramble to win the AI race. Amazon and Meta laid off thousands of employees, halted special projects, and discontinued product lines to make way for innovating with AI technology. These companies are harnessing generative AI to transform advertising and shopping experiences and letting go of employees in the process.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce called for intense AI regulation at the federal level to ensure job, national, and economic security. Generative AI is arguably the most gaming-changing technology humans have created in a long time. And although impressive chatbots lack true intelligence, the technology is reshaping our world every day.