McKinsey has published a survey of business executives around the world asking them to help shape the picture of the post-COVID workforce. The results show that the crisis may accelerate some workforce trends previously present, such as the adoption of automation and digitisation, increased demand for contractors and gig workers, and more remote work. Those changes in turn will create greater demand for workers to fill jobs in areas like cybersecurity and data analytics.
88% of finance and insurance executives and 76% of IT executives reported increased implementation of automation and AI since the outbreak. As a result of this, 35% of survey respondents said they would need more workers skilled in automation, AI, and robotics. Many companies already have built programmes to retrain their employees losing jobs to automation in new skills that complement automation. Such skills currently are rare among the workforce, and retraining employees in them typically costs companies less than laying them off.