What impact will industry 4.0 have on the jobs market?
As the rocky year of 2016 drew to a close, the government provided a beacon of hope when they pledged £2billion to boost our developments in industry, science and technology, and spoke of a new mission to recruit three million apprentices by 2020 to plug the skills gaps in our industries.
As Industry 4.0 comes into full effect, all eyes are on our future jobs market and whether the advancing of AI technology and robots will replace our workforce or generate more opportunities for emerging skills.
Whilst we don’t yet fully know what this next phase will bring, there are five observations we’ve made about recruiting in the new industrial age of cyber physical systems, automation, data exchange, IoT and cloud computing:
- The Playing Field Has Levelled
Large companies will no longer have the pulling power they traditionally enjoyed when attracting talent for these new technologies, unless they can move as quickly as the smaller, agile players. Ambitious, young companies who can innovate in disruptive tech will gain traction and appeal to the next generation of engineers, scientists and tech professionals who will be seeking a new way of working in an inspirational culture. Companies large and small will need a bullet-proof recruitment plan to win the talent war.
- It’s Now Critical to Know the Market Inside-Out
There is a well-documented talent crisis in both the engineering and IT sectors. Top talent in is high demand. Consequently, companies will be clinging on to their star performers, which means that recruiters will need to become increasingly savvy in how they headhunt. They’ll need to know this new market inside-out, keeping a close eye on the skills landscape as it evolves.
- Success Relies on Multi-skilled, Flexible Candidates
The jobs of today within the fields of IoT, smart technology, automation and connectivity rely on people who are multi-skilled. Candidates need to be not only highly skilled but also flexible and unarrogant, ready to turn their hand to a multitude of projects and tasks during different phases of development and company growth.
- Industry 4.0 Needs More Women
There’s no place for gender discrimination in Industry 4.0. Just 9% of the engineering workforce are women, giving the UK the lowest percentage of professional female engineers in Europe. In 2010, nearly 100,000 female STEM graduates were unemployed. Recruiters and employers would be wise to look beyond the traditional scope when searching for potential candidates because the industry needs women to survive.
- Industry 4.0 Complements Flexi-Working
As factories become smarter, the increasingly popular concept of flexible working finally enters this sector. Automation will allow systems to schedule production around the availability of employees with childcare requirements or the ageing workers – and to work around top talent who will be attracted to the jobs for the flexi-perks rather than simply remuneration packages.
As Industry 4.0 takes hold, UK employers need to change the way they recruit, and look for the opportunities this new age can bring in terms of talent and working culture.
If you would like to know more about recruiting for Industry 4.0, please contact Provide Connected.