Are AI-triggered layoffs coming soon?

Human resources, web development among roles regarded as vulnerable

Are AI-triggered layoffs coming soon?

Managers across the United States have expressed a willingness to replace people with AI, citing its benefits as tech furthers its influence within workplaces.

In a survey among 3,000 managers, 65% admitted that they would "gladly replace" employees with AI tools if the work was comparable.

"The operative word being ‘comparable.’ While AI can produce good results, any content would still require manual revisions and improvements from an expert in the field to maintain creative integrity and ensure accuracy," said the report, released by Beautiful.ai.

The findings come amid growing concerns among employees that tech and automation could eventually replace them in the workplace.

“While the findings show managers have an eye towards the replacement of staff, the reality is that current generative AI is built to enhance worker's outputs, not replace it,” said Beautiful.ai CEO Jason Lapp.

Roles vulnerable to artificial intelligence

According to the report, 72% of managers are aware that their employees are concerned of getting laid off due to the implementation of AI tools. Roles vulnerable to replacement as listed by respondents include:

  • Web development (40%)
  • Financial advisor (10%)
  • Sales (10%)
  • Public relations (9%)
  • Human resources (9%)
  • Graphic designer (8%)
  • Marketing (8%)
  • Administrative (7%)  

"Still, generative AI is built to enhance users' output and is far from being a system that can fully replace entire jobs and teams," the report said.

Financial benefits of AI

Nearly 70% of the respondents said it would be "financially beneficial for their business if they were able to replace a large number of employees with AI tools."

"Where teams once needed to add to their headcount to ensure certain tasks were being performed, software and technology have stepped in to help businesses reduce overhead costs," the report said.

With less human-powered work needed, department's budgets may be allocated to investing tools and software instead of getting new hires, according to the report.

 

And as layoffs continue amid economic uncertainty, 90% of managers said that AI tools will only see more popularity. In fact, 34% said they are already educating their employees on the adoption of AI tools, while 22% are self-testing AI tools for their teams.

Risks to businesses

But job security isn't the top reason to be afraid of AI, said the respondents.

Cybersecurity risks associated with AI tools is the most noted concern by managers (43%) when it comes to AI in the workplace.

It follows recent cyberattacks among major organisations across the world. To protect themselves against developed tech, many employers such as Amazon and Verizon imposed a ban on AI tools, such as ChatGPT, in their workplaces.

"As AI becomes increasingly popular among professionals, it's very likely that we'll see smart tools and software put in the necessary work to address and eliminate any lingering question marks or hesitations from consumers," the report said.

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