Reskilling in the Artificial Intelligence Era

Reskilling in the Artificial Intelligence Era

Copyright: © 2024 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/979-8-3693-0712-0.ch003
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The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) is having a profound impact on the workforce. As AI automates more and more tasks, it becomes increasingly important for employees to reskill and upskill to stay relevant and competitive. There are several assumptions about the impact of AI on the workforce. This chapter focuses on the technological impact of AI on skills management and learning and development, that is, how these management practices contribute to meeting the reskilling needs of human resources. Furthermore, the way we learn and develop is also changing in the age of AI. Traditional learning methods are being complemented with new, more engaging, and interactive methods. AI is also creating new opportunities for lifelong learning. Other dimensions must be studied in relation to the impacts of AI, which will be suggested in the final considerations.
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Concerns about the future of work, the jobs and skills of the future are highlighted by international studies (WEF, 2020, 2023) and researchers (Itam & Warrier, 2023; Lynn et al., 2023; Singh et al., 2022; Zachariah et al., 2022). They all share concerns about the impact of technology on the workforce, particularly artificial intelligence (AI).

AI is a broad term that encompasses a wide range of technologies, from machine learning to natural language processing. AI is still in its early stages of development, but it is rapidly evolving and is expected to have a major impact on the workforce in the coming years. The implementation of AI systems is causing very significant changes at an accelerated pace in the workforce, from a strong probability of job elimination and job displacement to layoffs, new positions, and types of work, i.e., new jobs opportunities, emergence of new work profiles, monitored and aligned with the greater complexity that tends to characterize current work processes (Ekuma, 2023; Lloyd & Payne, 2019; Morandini et al., 2023).

According to The Future of Jobs Report 2023, employers estimate that 44% of employees' skills will be affected in the next 5 years and 6 out of 10 employees will need training before 2027. However, only half of employees currently have access to adequate training opportunities. The priority skills that need to be developed between 2023-2027 are: - analytical thinking, which is expected to account for 10% of training initiatives on average; creative thinking, which will be the subject of 8% of skills improvement initiatives; training to use AI and big data is considered a priority by 42% of the companies surveyed; and, leadership and social influence (40% of companies); resilience, flexibility and agility (32%); and curiosity and lifelong learning (30%). The report's conclusion reinforces that the skills that companies say are rapidly increasing in importance are not always reflected in their skills improvement strategies (WEF, 2023).

Accepting this reality means recognizing that increased attention is needed towards the issue of workforce skills and competences. Learning and development it is a strategic and operational area, focused on behavioral performance to attain both organizational and personal needs and objectives. As an example, post COVID-19 and with the growth of remote working, challenges and opportunities have been created to improve skills and reskill employees (Itam & Warrier, 2023). Organizations need to be proactive in promoting training and development programmes that address digital literacy, soft skills and the changing skills requirements caused by remote working (Sharma et al., 2022). Through upskilling and reskilling opportunities, organizations can promote employee development, improve retention rates, and improve overall organizational performance (Yarberry & Sims, 2021). Upskilling has been the main process, and now reskilling appears to be a principal strategy to endorse the maintenance, the relevance, and the competitiveness of employees in a context of growing integration of IA systems in work processes, in a paradigm that is directing societies towards new and distinct realities, the industry 4.0 paradigm.

In this context, this essay looks at recent developments on the importance of reskilling in an organizational context where artificial intelligence is increasingly present. Specifically, we will discuss the challenges and opportunities in terms of competences management and learning and development. These considerations provide the backdrop for further research into the importance of competency-based human resource management in responding to the demands of implementing AI in organizations. The chapter is structured in 4 parts. First, some concepts and assumptions of IA are presented. Then we look at the importance of reskilling in the current context and, how learning and development also must fit in with AI. Finally, we present the conclusions, implications, and recommendations for future studies in the final considerations.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Upskilling: Is the process of acquiring new skills and competences related to the employee's current area of work.

Reskilling: Is the process of acquiring new skills and competences to work in a new area.

Learning and Development: Is a people management practice that consists of a continuous process of acquiring new skills and competences needed to perform effectively at work in an environment of rapid technological change.

Artificial Intelligence: Refers to a robot's ability to learn, reason, comprehend, and behave intelligently and rationally, much like humans.

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