The Office of National Statistics (ONS) analysed the jobs of 20 million people in England in 2017, and has found that 7.4% of them are at high risk of automation. Furthermore, they have produced a list of 369 jobs in the UK, and the probability of them becoming automated in the future. Each role has been assigned a probability out of 1 based on numerous factors, and the average probability across all the jobs in the country is 0.45.
Below are the five jobs that ONS believe have the greatest probability of becoming automated sooner rather than later.
1: Waiters and Waitresses – 0.73/1 probability of automation
Two years ago in August 2019 London based chain ‘The Tea Terrace’ introduced a robot waitress named Theresa. Since then more robotic waiters and waitresses have been popping up around the country, and as a consequence, they are the human job most at risk of being replaced by automation.
2: Shelf Fillers – 0.72/1 probability of automation
Another occupation at risk of becoming automated is shelf stackers or fillers, with shop workers at the mercy of robot workers. Japanese supermarkets have trialled robots stacking shelves, and this technology could make its way to the UK sooner rather than later.
3: Elementary Sales Occupations – 0.71/1 probability of automation
Along with shelf stackers, other shop workers are at high risk of losing their jobs to automated services. Laborious yet necessary tasks would be one of the easiest to programme into robots and consequently, human manpower could lose out.
4: Bar Staff – 0.71/1 probability of automation
The 2016 sci-fi blockbuster movie Passengers featured a futuristic robotic barman played by Michael Sheen, and although they will probably look very different to the Welsh actor, robotic bar staff might soon become science fact rather than fiction. With many humans leaving the industry due to the uncertainty of the pandemic, hospitality may turn to robots to run their bars and pubs.
5: Kitchen and catering assistants – 0.69 probability of automation
The backbone of the restaurant industry are the kitchen and catering assistants who enable the chefs to concentrate on cooking and perform the other tasks to keep a kitchen functioning. Some tasks that are the responsibility of kitchen and catering assistants are also ones that would be easy for robots to mimic and as such, there is a high probability of automation.