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Jobs That Robots Will Take Over Soon

Updated on September 27, 2017
Rock_nj profile image

I am fascinated by rapidly developing technology and what the world will be like in the future. I hope you enjoy this peek into the future.

With robot technology advancing quickly, it appears that there are several jobs that robots will take over soon to some extent and in some cases dominate to the detriment to humans that are currently performing these jobs. People working in manufacturing industries are no longer the only one’s who have to worry about being replaced by robots. Some of the jobs that will soon be lost to robots are not all that surprising, since they integrate well with automation, while some others are somewhat unexpected.

Of course, this shift to robot labor is not entirely a negative for mankind, since robots can perform high risk jobs that can be harmful to humans There will also be big financial winners as some jobs shift to robots, as companies save a tremendous amount of money on salaries and compensation. Consumers will benefit from lower cost products and services provided by robots. No matter what the pluses and minuses are, it is worthwhile for everyone in the labor market to understand how robots are going to affect the job market in the not too distant future.

Robots are poised to take over many jobs currently performed by humans.
Robots are poised to take over many jobs currently performed by humans. | Source

Long-Haul Truck Driver Jobs Will Go Robotic

While there will be an extensive debate in coming years regarding the safety of robotic trucks on the roads, that hasn’t stopped companies from developing long-haul trucks that are operated robotically without a human driver. In fact, there have been road tests on real roads and highways in which a long-haul truck is operated without a human at the steering wheel.

In 2016, Uber purchased self-driving trucking startup company called Otto. That same year, a fully automated,self-driving truck developed and operated by Uber’s Otto division delivered a load of 45,000 cans of beer from an Anheuser-Busch facility in Fort Collins, Colorado to a distributor in Colorado Springs. After the success of this initial test run, Uber set up a division called UberFreight to roll out self-driving robotic truck services to a wide range of shippers.

Uber's UberFreight Division Self-Driving Truck Named "Otto"

Uber's UberFreight division testing a self- driving truck named "Otto" on roads and highways in Colorado.  Make a delivery of beer for Anheuser-Busch.
Uber's UberFreight division testing a self- driving truck named "Otto" on roads and highways in Colorado. Make a delivery of beer for Anheuser-Busch. | Source

Bartenders

While robotic bartenders that can carry on an interesting conversation or sooth a customer’s concerns may be years off, robots that create precise bar drinks are already serving drinks. If you would rather skip the banter with human bartenders and forgo paying tips, then you will welcome robotic bartenders that can make your drink with computerized precision.


Waiters and Waitresses

Restaurants are notoriously low margin businesses, which make them ideal candidates for incorporating robotic waiters and waitresses into their operations, since robots will never need a raise, do not require benefits and can work long hours that humans cannot tolerate. While robots may take some of the charm away from going out to eat at a restaurant, they will be a boon to restaurant owners that are desperate to turn a profit. The first iteration of robotic wait staff are simply computer notepads that customers use to place their order with humans delivering the order. Eventually, food and drinks will be delivered by Rosie or Rex the robot.

Robots Are Already Working as Waiters and Waitresses

Robots working as waiters and waitresses, serving food and drinks.
Robots working as waiters and waitresses, serving food and drinks. | Source

Line Cooks

Robots will also likely play a big role behind the scenes in restaurants. While a robot may never challenge a world-renowned chef’s skills at cooking an exquisite meal, robots could certainly take over and do routine line cook jobs that involve preparing items that go into dishes. Robots will work tirelessly chopping vegetables and preparing foods, and never require the type of break a human line cook requires.


Postal Service Jobs

The postal service relies heavily on human beings to sort and deliver mail. This type of work is well suited for robots, due to the repetitive nature of the work. The postal service will likely pursue integration of robotic workers into its operations, as the pressure to save money on employee costs drives this large public employer to turn to robots to perform the repetitive tasks that are involved in getting mail to its recipients.


Surgeons

Even jobs that require years of education and pay handsomely, such as surgeons, are at risk of being lost to robots. Robotic surgeons are already at work performing surgical procedures on humans, such as gall bladder removal. In fact, approximately twenty types of surgery can currently be performed by robots. Many additional surgical procedures will be performed by robots in the future, as more sophisticated robots are developed that are capable of performing complicated surgeries. There may always be a need for humans in an operating room, but their roles will be greatly diminished as robots take over many surgical procedures.

A Robotic Surgeon At Work

A doctor oversees a robot surgeon at work performing surgery on a patient.
A doctor oversees a robot surgeon at work performing surgery on a patient. | Source

Taxi and Bus Drivers

Self-driving cars are being researched and developed extensively by several companies. It’s only a matter of time before self-driving cars reach the technological threshold in which they can be used as taxis or on a larger scale as buses. Some train systems already work without a human engineer controlling the train, and have been for decades. It’s not a huge leap for other forms of transportation, such as taxis and buses to lose their human operators and be replaced by sophisticated self-driving vehicles.

Farmers

Farming is a draining line of work that requires long hours. It is also quite dangerous, as farmers are sometimes put in harm’s while operating farm equipment during their long workdays. While farmers will still tend to their fields and crops, they will do so in a very different way in the future, by using robots to take care of the daily labor required to produce food. Farms that utilize robots are already being testing in Japan and are likely to grow in popularity over time, as the farm industry realizes the cost savings utilizing robots that never have to take a water break and can get up at any hour to take care of the crops.

Robots’ Effects on the Job Market Will Have To Be Dealt With

This is just a partial list of jobs that robots will take over soon. Essentially, any job that is repetitive or can be done logically may someday be taken over by a robot that is designed to perform its job flawlessly. This may create quite a quandary for human civilization, since many people’s very existence is tied to their jobs. Mankind may have to rethink how robots can be put to work to create a sustainable society for all people, including the millions who lose their jobs to robots.

A Robot Working a Farm Field

Robots are being developed that can work in farm fields to tend to crops.
Robots are being developed that can work in farm fields to tend to crops. | Source

Humans Need Not Apply: A Very Insightful Look Into Robots Taking Over Jobs

Robot Workers Effect on Humans Poll

What Effect Will Robot Workers Have on Humans?

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This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2017 John Coviello

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    • Larry Fish profile image

      Larry W Fish 

      3 years ago from Raleigh

      John, I worked in manufacturing for 30 years and I saw how robots threw people out of work. Industrial robots are everywhere now in manufacturing. I worked on machines that could do things many times faster than a single person could do. Now as we go in stores we see the self-checkout lines. Yes, those machines are actually robots. I have seen videos of robots mixing drinks, making hamburgers, and various other things. I worked on the assembly of the inside of hand held bar code scanners. Yes, those bar code scanners are robots. Robots will be in everything in our daily lives very soon. Just look at what is done now. They are taking many jobs away from people, but it is all about companies making more profits, sad to say.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      3 years ago

      I can see robots in the food service industry as waiters. We have a taste of it now when we dine at certain restaurants. I can't see transportation as a safe use of them yet. Interesting article and one that makes you think.

    • Rock_nj profile imageAUTHOR

      John Coviello 

      3 years ago from New Jersey

      Thanks Angel. I am concerned too. I am working on a Hub about what this all might mean for mankind? We can't just have 100s of millions of people become unemployed. We are at some point going to have to use robots to help human existence.

    • Angel Guzman profile image

      Angel Guzman 

      3 years ago from Joliet, Illinois

      I'm very concerned about robots infiltrating our labor market. It is welcome on some jobs yes in a limited degree but ultimately I feel over digitalization is an enemy, not a friend. Good read!

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