7:30 am - 9:30 am
Location: Lumina Technologies, Hemel Hempstead
Cost: Free (Breakfast included)
We are all worried by what appears to be the relentless march of technology. Popular culture would have it that artificial intelligence (AI) in machines is bad for the future of the human job market, but we are more than our lifetime away from that. I see AI as a disruptor, not a terminator (pun intended) of career opportunities.
What AI will do is change things in the same way that the advent of the internet has changed our shopping habits. Online shopping has indeed had a massive impact and it has certainly been bad news for the high street, but on the other hand, new jobs have been gained elsewhere.
For example, Amazon’s distribution model is increasingly based on self-employed delivery drivers – however, whilst it is providing jobs, they are low skilled. But if you think back to the jobs lost on the high street as a result of online shopping, e.g. cashiers, they were also low skilled.
On a positive note, people are missing the experience of shopping and talking to a human being about what they’d like to buy. Some online companies are now experimenting with non-transactional showrooms, where people can browse the products and talk to retail assistants, but then buy online.
In the technology sector, we have to adapt to massive changes all the time. Five years ago, for instance, the IT industry was worried that the Cloud would massively disrupt our business services, but in reality, this did not happen. The industry integrated the Cloud and made it relevant to our work. We now implement and maintain Cloud technology as an integral part of our managed service provision.
Our MD, Richard McBarnet, will chair this roundtable discussion with business leaders who can see that technology and AI will have a marked effect on their industries and business, and who are willing to find ways of adapting in order to welcome the change and evolve alongside it.