What do you think will happen in the future?
Utopian visions of the future often consist of fantastic, whirring, flying gadgets that make life easier (we are still waiting for those hoverboards). We also fantasise about intelligent robots built to serve the human race. But what if the robots take over?
We’re not talking about an imagined dystopian future where we’re all ruled by gigantic machines, but a rather real one where robots have taken over jobs. Not just factory production jobs either. Recent studies from Oxford University and Deloitte suggest robots could be used to do jobs such as cocktail waiting and writing reports from data. Jobs you might not expect machines to be capable of like taxi driving and surgery could also become possible in the near future.
How likely is a robot workforce takeover?
In production, electronics company Foxconn plans to have a 30% robot workforce within the next five years. Meanwhile in China, 30,000 workers are set to have their factory jobs taken over by robots.
According to an Oxford university study, 35% of UK jobs could be done by robots within two decades. Predictions from Boston Consulting Group go a step further; they think that up to 25% of jobs will be done by robots or smart software by 2025.
What could this mean for workers in the UK?
If the capability of smart software, robots and automation does prove able to do the job of a taxi driver, journalist, factory worker or even a doctor, it could leave much of the UK workforce fearful of being laid-off.
Mass redundancy could have a huge impact upon the UK economy and see workers seeking legal advice from trade unions and Employment Solicitors.
If your employer says they no longer need you to carry out your job, you might be selected for redundancy. In the future, robots could be used as a reason to make you redundant, but you still have redundancy rights and the right not to be unfairly dismissed.
Parts of manufacturing have already seriously been impacted with machinery and technology taking over manual jobs. You can find out the chances of your job being taken over by a robot on this BBC Technology Quiz.
Slater and Gordon Lawyers UK are legal experts in redundancy. If you are facing redundancy selection, our Employment Solicitors can help by supporting you through the process. Call us on freephone 0800 916 9060 or contact us online and we’ll call you.