Will Robots Take Over Your Job?
Will technology take your job? If your work involves manufacturing, customer service, or driving, the answer might be yes. Robots are designed to replace humans for jobs that require repetitive tasks. Types of robots that are replacing humans at work include blue collar robots, drones, drivers, customer service robots, and personal assistants. While robots do replace humans for certain jobs, they are dependent on human engineering to function. Robots create jobs for humans since only humans can program, maintain and manage them.
Blue Collar Robots
Blue collar robots are those that automate jobs such as welding and painting car bodies on an assembly line. These industrial robots cost companies far less than their human counterparts. Some blue collar robots are capable of selecting boxes, picking up the boxes and placing them in line for shipping. Post offices use robot technology to read and sort mail much faster than humans did for decades. Engraving, which used to be a specialized job, is now a robot-driven industry.
Drones and Drivers
Drones are robots that fly. Some deliver packages to designated addresses while others aid in search and rescue. They are programmed to avoid obstacles and the smooth flights can be automated or manually controlled. Drones contain cameras used for military, insurance, to survey the environment and even film making. While drones are used in the air, similar types of robots on the ground include those who drive. Mass transportation automation is common for driverless trains and monorails. Robots may replace taxi and bus drivers in the near future and driverless cars may become the norm.
Customer Service Robots
If you have dialed a corporate number to be greeted by voice automation, you were interacting with a rigid customer service robot who will insist that you speak or press a number on the phone keypad. Before you can talk to a human, you often have to input information to “route” the call. Decades ago, the same function was carried out by human switchboard operators. Not all companies use telephone customer service robots due to increasing customer frustration. It is not impossible to find a human who answers with, “How may I direct your call?” If the customers are always right, frustrating customer service robots will be re-replaced by humans again.
Personal Butlers and Assistants
Humans enjoy being waited on. If you do not have a live-in nanny or housekeeper, robotic butlers and assistants perform services better than their human counterparts. The few who own personal butlers are very pleased with the service they receive. Robots can bring you a refreshing drink while you sit on the couch, for example. Humans rely on robot assistants, such as Siri, to transform speech into text, to provide navigation advice, to look up information and to entertain. Appliance makers create robots to order food that has been depleted from the refrigerator, control the temperature of a home, and lock and unlock doors. How many people can compete or surpass the capabilities of Siri?
Robots are machines created by and for humans. They are programmed to carry out repetitive tasks faster and easier than their human counterparts. Robot workers do not need meal breaks, health insurance, benefits, socialization, or personal holidays. They are not capable of anger, frustration, or road rage. Robots are void of emotion and easier to manage than humans. However, there is speculation that robots could evolve to make decisions and “think” beyond their programming. Robots will take jobs away from many. The question becomes “Will robots replace humans completely?”