Digitalisation of jobs in future will create 'superjobs'

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A 2019 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends report has revealed that in South Africa, business leaders are open to digitalisation of work in order to reach company goals.

The research found 51% of respondents are exploring automation for their workforce, while 58% stated they are using automation to replace repetitive work.

Most respondents noted that the latter is important but also stated there is a need for continuous learning due to the adoption of automation technologies.

The global report draws on insights from over 9 000 global survey respondents in over 119 countries, including 345 respondents from South Africa.

One of the traits highlighted by the report is that jobs need to change. Jobs of the future will be more digital, more multidisciplinary, and more data- and information-driven. The report further states this will create new roles that will be called “superjobs” and combine parts of different traditional jobs into integrated roles that leverage the significant productivity and efficiency gains that can arise when people work with technology.

Deloitte Consulting Africa human capital leader Pam Maharaj says when companies reinvent themselves, they must take into consideration that lower-wage work across service sectors continues to grow, along with non-traditional contract, freelance and gig employment. These services must not be left behind when the company goes through its transformation.

“[There is] no ‘one-size-fits-all’ when it comes to the workforce of the future. Organisations need to explore all options and create a culture which embraces technology while ensuring people feel a sense of belonging and esteem.”

Maharaj says leading organisations are empowering individuals and providing for their need to continuously develop their skills, by investing in new tools to embed learning into the flow of work as well as the flow of extended life and, as a consequence, an extended career.

In the poll, South African respondents said they are ‘satisfied’ with the current work-related tools and technology available. Most felt that reinvention is required in their jobs and they have enough autonomy within their jobs to make good decisions.

In the study, the firm also looked at how companies can reinvent themselves in general by interacting, motivating and personalising experiences with the workforce to help build identity and meaning for workers.

The leading trend shows a growing demand to reinvent the way people learn, with 89% of South African respondents describing this as “important”, while 86% of the interviewees globally feel the same.

“Organisations need to shift from the traditional employee experience to ‘human experience’. In this ‘human experience’, relationships are enduring, learning is continuous and work has meaning that is centred around human identity,” notes Maharaj.

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