CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) -Automated technology is progressing far beyond manufacturing floors, and experts warn 29.3% of current jobs in Ohio could be replaced by machines at some point in the future.
“Throughout the U.S. retail salespersons, cashiers, food prep, and secretaries are among the largest, most vulnerable occupations,” Collin Czarnecki said, a content strategist and researcher for Kempler Industries. “In Ohio, the trend is similar. Statewide, the most at-risk occupation is food prep and service, with 160,070 food prep and serving workers across Ohio.”
Kempler, a company that specializes in buying and selling equipment for the machine and manufacturing industry, recently looked at the 170 most vulnerable occupations, as identified by the University of Oxford study to see which states are at risk of loosing the most jobs.
Cleveland ranked as the 20th most at risk metro area for jobs that could be replaced by automation at 28.4%.
“We’re starting to see automation in the form of online shopping replace the demand for brick-and-mortar shops, and self-checkouts at fast food chains and grocery stores replace the need for a cashier or clerk,” Czarnecki said. “If the trend continues, metro areas like Cleveland could see a number of these service industry workers facing unemployment if more and more of their positions automate.”
Here is a breakdown, by industry, of how many jobs in Ohio are susceptible to being automated:
- Combined food preparation and serving workers, including fast food 160,070
- Retail salespersons 154,490
- Cashiers 121,600
- Office clerks, general 109,130
- Waiters and waitresses 94,720
- Secretaries and administrative assistants, except Legal, medical, and executive 66,030
- Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing Clerks 54,850
- Accountants and auditors 45,670
- Shipping, receiving, and traffic clerks 38,900
- Cooks, restaurant 37,220
- Landscaping and groundskeeping workers 36,420
- Receptionists and information clerks 33,180
- Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers 32,240
- Industrial truck and tractor operators 30,850
- Driver/Sales workers 21,710
- Billing and posting clerks 21,290
- Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers 18,220
- Tellers 18,080
- Multiple machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic 16,860
Researchers like Czarnecki say the answer may be in education, to get the workforce away from fast-food and store clerk positions.
“As this study looks at the potential job losses for the careers deemed most susceptible to automation, this is really a moment for awareness,” Czarnecki. “We see educators across the country emphasize STEM education and curriculums to help prepare America’s youth for the growing number of careers in technology, engineering, and IT.”