Londoners most concerned over AI’s impact on jobs

Artificial Intelligence, News

The latest iteration of the report revealed that 49% of staff in the capital are concerned that AI will have a direct effect on their career in the next 12 months, the highest of all regions and well above the national average of 31%. The East Midlands recorded the second highest level of concern; however, this stands at just 35%, well below London’s levels.

Employees across the Capital also expressed the greatest level of apprehension in the long term, with almost two thirds (61%) concerned about the impact of AI on their job in the next three to five years. This is again the highest of all UK regions and above the national average of 41%.

This sentiment comes at a time when the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) has released new data which suggests that up to eight million jobs are at risk in the UK due to AI.

According to Robert Half’s data, the level of uncertainty around AI’s impact on jobs has led to workers in the Capital planning to proactively invest in their own AI-related training in the next five years (60%), surpassed only by professionals in Wales (62%).

Just over half (56%) of Londoners are expecting employers to foot the bill for their AI training over the next five years. A further 54% are planning to retrain and move into AI-related jobs or fields, the second highest levels recorded after Wales (59%) and well above the national average of 40%.

Say Chris Lawton, Vice President Permanent Placements UK & Ireland at Robert Half

“AI is on the cusp of creating a seismic shift in the workforce, but Londoners are clearly feeling the pressure more than anyone else, likely driven by the jobs in the Capital being weighted more towards professional and financial services than elsewhere in the country.

“With recent statistics suggesting job losses will be in the millions due to the rise of AI, it’s understandable that so many are hedging their bets and seeking to retrain and reskill. However, the emphasis shouldn’t just be on individuals supporting their own training. Businesses will ultimately be the ones to benefit from the best AI skills and potentially lose out due to a lack of the right resources.

“Employers must act now and ‘talent map’ their human capital, identifying skills gaps and ways to fill them – be it by internal upskilling programmes, bringing in interim experts for knowledge-sharing, or working with third sector organisations to explore new routes to acquiring unique and diverse talent. And with AI having the potential to impact every aspect of an organisation, employees will need to upskill sooner rather than later to secure their future employability. The notion of life-long learning and development has never been more critical.”

Chris Price
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