Is your job a candidate for automation?

automation in the workforce DXC Blogs

A recent report on automation in the workplace by McKinsey Global Insights (MGI) concludes that “about half of all the activities people are paid to do in the world’s workforce could potentially be automated by adapting currently demonstrated technologies.”

And while MGI estimates that fewer than 5% of jobs could be fully automated, the research firm argues that nearly every occupation “has partial automation potential.”

But which occupations specifically are the most likely candidates?

PayScale, a website that has compiled a massive database of individual salary profiles, reviewed a study by two Oxford University researchers ranking 702 occupations “according to their probability of computerisation.”

If you’re in the healthcare field, the odds of you getting replaced by a machine are quite low. In fact, here are 10 occupations least likely to be impacted by automation:

  1. Recreational Therapists
  2. First-Line Supervisors of Mechanics, Installers, and Repairers
  3. Emergency Management Directors
  4. Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers
  5. Audiologists
  6. Occupational Therapists
  7. Orthotists and Prosthetists
  8. Healthcare Social Workers
  9. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
  10. First-Line Supervisors of Fire Fighting and Prevention Workers

The less fortunate end of the spectrum is packed with a dozen jobs given a 99% chance of falling to automation:

    1. Telemarketers
    2. Title Examiners, Abstractors, and Searchers
    3. Sewers, Hand
    4. Mathematical Technicians
    5. Insurance Underwriters
    6. Watch Repairers
    7. Cargo and Freight Agents
    8. Tax Preparers
    9. Photographic Process Workers and Processing Machine Operators
    10. New Accounts Clerks
    11. Library Technicians
    12. Data Entry Keyers

Some of these — telemarketers and data entry keyers — are hardly surprising. But watch repairers and library technicians? And with a 98% chance of being computerized are legal secretaries, parts salespersons and … models? Just below them, at 97%, are real estate brokers, dental lab technicians, farm labor contractors and log graders and scalers.

For employers, automation holds out the promise of greater efficiency and profitability. But it also will introduce severe disruption in a number of industries and occupations. The smartest enterprise leaders will learn how to jointly leverage the skills, experiences and insights of their human employees — tangible assets, all! — with the benefits that automation can bring.

And the less insightful leaders probably will be replaced by robots.


Workforce of the future: Are you planning for robots in your team?

Workers more chill about robot threat than previously thought

Augmentation or automation: How can the defense industry prepare?


  1. […] Is your job a candidate for automation? […]


  2. […] last I tried to frighten enterprise workers about losing their jobs to robots, I cited an Oxford University study that […]


  3. […] Is your job a candidate for automation? […]


  4. […] Is your job a candidate for automation? […]


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