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The Future of Work for Veterans - Part 1

In this four-part series by Antoinette Toscano, we will look at the future of work through 2030, and how today’s active duty military and veterans can prepare to be global-workplace ready.

Automation and AI are transforming businesses 

According to a June 2018, executive brief put out by the McKinsey Global Institute, “Automation and artificial intelligence (AI) are transforming businesses and will contribute to economic growth via contributions to productivity. They will also help address “moonshot” societal challenges in areas from health to climate change. 

This statement might sound ominous if you are changing careers or are entering the civilian workforce for the first time as a veteran or college graduate. Although automation and AI will be able to perform better than humans at some tasks, it will enhance the work product of humans in other cases. 

Your challenge is to work today to have the skills that you need for the jobs of tomorrow.

The U.S. Armed Forces goal - 30% of its capabilities to be autonomous by 2020

In 2017, at the Future of War, Conference, Air Force General, David Goldfein said, “The reality is that we are completely interdependent. This is an air, land, sea, cyber force that goes forward.”

This is an enormous opportunity for veterans and active duty military personnel. Yes, you will have to begin transitioning from careers with declining job opportunities. But the good news is that you can begin acquiring some of the skills that you will need for jobs of the future—today.

The McKinsey report went on to say—" Demand for advanced technological skills such as programming will grow rapidly.

Social, emotional, and higher cognitive skills, such as creativity, critical thinking, and complex information processing, will also see growing demand. 

Basic digital skills demand has been increasing and that trend will continue and accelerate.

Demand for physical and manual skills will decline but will remain the single largest category of workforce skills in 2030 in many countries.” The report also found that less than 5% of jobs, worldwide, can be fully automated. What this means is that 95% of jobs will be fully or partially human-driven.

But before you breathe a sigh of relief, most of you will need to continue to become more tech-savvy as the nature of your work is likely to involve more interaction with technology. Most jobs in the future will use AI, automation, and other forms of big data usage to accomplish repetitive and data-driven aspects of a task. This will take place alongside your human output as a 21st Century worker. 

15 Best Drone Training Colleges

In this excellent article by Successful Student, you will find a ranked listing of the fifteen best drone training colleges in the U.S. Full degrees and certificates are available for drone engineers and pilots.

To take advantage of the coming avalanche of high-paying, automation and AI jobs, training programs offering certificates and college and university degrees in science, technology, and other STEM curricula will be required. However, you may be able to apply some of the coursework that you have already completed to your new degree.

In our next installment, we will discuss the future impact of automation on the workforce.

Visit our job board regularly to find companies that have positions available offering veterans jobs, and follow our blog and social media profiles to get news of job fairs in your area.     

About the Author: Antoinette Lee Toscano proudly served in the United States Army during the Gulf War era, for eleven years as a database administrator, dental clinic manager, Army recruiter, dental assistant, dental hygienist and an air assault qualified, expert field medic throughout her military career.