Artificial intelligence is impacting businesses across the world, and the engineering industry is no stranger to this wave of innovation. Whether it’s administrative functions or the manufacturing process, different streams of AI technology are having a dramatic impact on the way business is being done on a global scale. But what does this mean for those working in the sector?
With artificial intelligence driving such profound change, this clearly changes the job market for professionals in engineering. To find out more about what this means for those working in the engineering sector, or those looking for new opportunities, we spoke to Rikki Bains, Sales Team Manager at Computer Futures.
Increased opportunity for all
A lot of the time, when people discuss artificial intelligence (AI) and automation, the concern of job loss rears its head. However, within the engineering space, Rikki believes there’s actually a great deal of opportunity, “AI is an interesting topic because we’re actually dealing with a skill set that a lot of people don’t have. While this is quite a daunting idea, it really does open up the playing field to so many people. When applying for a job dealing with AI in engineering, you won’t be considered as heavily on your experience as most people just don’t have the direct experience. It’s essentially an open forum and so many people have the opportunity to begin a career in the space.”
Across the board, when it comes to the job market AI is a double edged sword. While numerous lower level skills look to be replaced, a great deal of specialist roles will be in demand. According to a report by the World Economic Forum, it’s predicted that the biggest emerging jobs by 2022 are expected to be Data Analysts, Data Scientists, and AI and Machine Learning Specialists. For professionals with specialist knowledge, over the next few years there’ll be a whole world of opportunities opening up. While many manual, admin based tasks look set to become automated, it’s an exciting time for those working within STEM industries as their specialist skills will only increase in demand.
Rikki presents an interesting insight, “Take the autonomous car; in the near future a lot of taxi drivers are out of a job due to innovation. Yet specialist engineers working on the development of autonomous cars will be in high demand. While the taxi driver may be out of a job, in theory, with so many opportunities to develop skills in the field through numerous courses and schemes, there’s no reason they can’t then take advantage of this new career path. As the opportunities arise, it’s a more levelled playing field for everyone.”
Professionals need to upskill
As opportunities emerge within AI, upskilling is essential. Rikki explains, “There’s so much opportunity for anyone to upskill themselves and take advantage of the opportunities on offer. We’ve seen this happen – I had a candidate who was pursuing a teaching career but wasn’t finding it fulfilling. After getting in touch they then decided to learn more about software development and coding. From there they were able to take advantage of the opportunities AI presents within engineering and have now worked with us to achieve two placements and enjoy a new career.”
The increased value of quality recruiters
Due to the nature of the industry at the moment, getting a good recruiter on side is crucial if you’re looking for an AI job within the engineering space. Unless your CV explicitly demonstrates that you have a wealth of AI experience, so much of what’s attractive to clients just won’t come across. Having someone who really understands the value you offer and can demonstrate this to companies is extremely important.
And it’s vital this recruiter is on the ball and knows their stuff. If you’re landed with a subpar recruiter, they could dismiss anyone away without “AI” bedazzled all over their CV, which isn’t the way to operate within this space. Finding a high quality recruiter opens you up to so many opportunities that would otherwise be closed off.
Uncertainty for hiring managers
On the other side of things, AI is having a profound impact on hiring managers looking for talent. According to Rikki, “Hiring managers are having to put a lot of trust in the recruiters, as well as the talent they’re hiring. In a traditional hiring situation, you’d be able to look at proven experience and qualify a candidate based on a proven track record of success. However, if they want to stay ahead of the curve and move their business forward, they have to put their trust in professionals who may not have the direct experience they’re looking for, because there’s so few people with the ideal list of skills.”
If you want to find out more about the opportunities available to you within AI, why not get in touch with Rikki today? Whether you have a wealth of experience, or want to find out more about how Computer Futures can help you to explore new opportunities, we’re here to help!