9 Jobs Most Likely to be Taken Over by Robots

Thanks to Technology, Many Jobs Will Be Fully Automated in the Near Future

Going, Going, Gone

You know all those movies where the robots become sentient and start to rise up against humans? Well, turns out it might not be as much hyperbole as we originally thought.

Technology is advancing at lightning speed, and if it strikes people in certain professions there’s a pretty good chance they could be out of a job. If you work in a profession that lends itself to potential automation, the possibility of machines doing your job faster and cheaper is a real threat. But could robots, machines, and computer programs really take the place of humans? Newsflash — it’s already happening.

But thanks to an initiative from NPR, now we can see what the approximate chances are that your job will one day be automated.

Researchers looked at a wide spectrum of jobs and scored them based on nine possible traits — the four most important being whether the job requires coming up with clever solutions, being personally required to help others directly, fitting into small spaces, and whether or not the job requires negotiation. While the researchers fully admit these are rough estimates and far from the most scientific findings, it still serves as a warning and decent indicator of which careers could soon be closed to living, breathing human beings.

Here are nine jobs most likely to be go the way of robots.

9. Bus Driver

89% chance of automation
Median annual salary: $19,894

Buckle up folks, because driverless vehicles are already here.

Many companies, including Google and Delphi, have been testing driverless cars on roads for years. The hope is because most accidents are caused by human error, taking the human out of the equation will actually increase efficiency and safety. Although we’re likely still a few years from these cars being completely legal and out on the road in force, the fact is driverless cars are already in operation and are closer to getting the green light than most people realize. So if you depend on driving to make a living, it might be time to throw on the brakes and find an alternative.

8. Roofer

90% chance of automation
Median annual salary: $32,983

According to NPR’s website, it is more than likely the people coming to fix your roof in the future won’t actually be people at all. There’s a 90% chance your roof will eventually be fixed by robots or artificial intelligence. So everyone in the Northeast and other cold weather climates who suffer through the brutal winters might no longer be gouged by companies fixing damage done from ice dams, because everything will be automated and taken care of using technology.

7. Accountant

94% chance of automation
Median annual salary: $47,616

If you have a choice between paying a little bit to file your taxes yourself or spending a lot to go to an accountant, which one will you choose?

With more people flocking to programs like TurboTax and Freshbooks, the need for accountants is diminished. That’s not to say a quality accountant isn’t worth his/her weight in gold, but the fact remains more people and businesses are automating accounting software and switching to do-it-yourself methods whenever possible to save money, which means accounting could find itself squarely in the “ripe to be replaced” camp.

6. Paralegal

95% chance of automation
Median annual salary: $48,918

In the old days, huge lawsuits required an army of paralegals to sort through documents, find legal statutes, and dig through legal code to find precisely what the attorneys were looking for. But now all the case law is archived and available at the push of a button. And even for the really huge cases, software exists than can analyze millions of documents in no time and cost far less than having to pay teams of people to work for months on end. More than that, the software can even extract relevant concepts and ideas from the documents it scans, helping lawyers even further.

5. Line Cook

96% chance of automation
Median annual salary: $22,309

A kitchen full of robot cooks? Programming your orders from your phone instead of giving them to a waiter or waitress? It’s not just possible, it’s arriving.

These robotic hands — consisting of 20 motors, 24 joints, and 129 sensors — can mimic the movements of the human hand and do nearly everything a real chef can do. Once the technologically is perfected and scaled, kitchens could consist of pairs of robotic hands slicing and dicing the pre-programmed items on the menu for fully automated cooking. It’s not here yet, but it’s not nearly as far off as people think.

4. Cashier

97% chance of automation
Median annual salary: $22,174

This one hardly needs an explanation, as self-checkout has been around for years. But even in addition to the self-checkout lanes, many stores now allow customers to carry around scanners. When they pick items up off the shelves, the items are scanned and logged. When done shopping, the customer simply scans her entire stored list of items at checkout, the total is given, the customer pays, and that’s it. It saves businesses money and saves the customer time.

3. Credit Analyst

98% chance of automation
Median annual salary: $46,477

Researching and examining credit risks? Assessing credit history, and approving or disapproving extension of credit? Those are the basic duties of a credit analyst, but with all the software and technology available today, why can’t that job be performed by machines? The answer, as this score indicates, is that it can.

2. Loan Officer

98% chance of automation
Median annual salary: $40,543

Traditionally, a loan officer has decided which businesses and individuals qualify for funding. If you were lucky, perhaps you got someone who was able to bend and show a little compassion as you were trying to secure a mortgage to get your first house. But as some lending companies go the route of automation and don’t employ any loan officers, your fate will most likely be in the hands of a computer with a complex algorithm that decides your future.

1. Telemarketer

99% chance of automation
Median annual salary: $34,522

No surprises here in that telemarketing jobs are the most likely — 99% to be exact — are the most likely to go the way of the dodo. With the amount of robo calls and the extent to which automated systems are prevalent, it’s actually becoming a rare thing to get spam calls from a real person. And to think, we might look back at getting hassled by telemarketers as the good old days.

OK, maybe not…

When Hired, Negotiate (or have your robot negotiate with their robot)

Whether you’re negotiating with a human being, by email, or we all have personal robots that negotiate for us, the point is you still should negotiate salary at all costs.

The first thing you should do is research, so you’re able to come to the table armed with the knowledge of what your job is worth. Use our free Salary Wizard below to find out what’s a fair salary for your position. You can enter your location, education level, years of experience and more to find out an appropriate salary range before you negotiate.

Good luck.

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