The Future of Work: a Leapfrog Strategy for Michigan

Invited Talk | Day 3 | 14:20:00 | 45 Minute Duration | GG-E/F

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The Future of Work: a Leapfrog Strategy for Michigan

Invited Talk | Day 3 | 14:20:00 | 45 Minute Duration | GG-E/F

By linking estimates from a widely cited study to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, we estimate that, as of 2018, 58% of the work performed by employed Michiganders was at risk of automation by 2030. Scary? Not really. Our data show that automation risk is steadily declining, with Michigan following the national trend and ranking near the middle of the 50 states. 

Meanwhile, more linked data from O*NET validates the public hype about soft skills like adaptability, analytical thinking, cooperation, concern for others, and leadership. Occupations that value these skills more pay more and have a lower risk of automation. But occupational groups differ widely. The differing soft-skills ‘footprints’ of health care providers vs. a computer and mathematical scientists starkly illustrate the recruitment challenged faced by firms seeking to build a soft-skill reputation in the technical world.

We’ve developed two data stories in Tableau to walk you through the evolution of soft skills’ importance and automation risk by occupation and state from 1999 to 2018. Come ask good questions, we can explore the data together!

Talent 2025, West Michigan’s regional talent collaborative of educators, businesses, and governments, sponsored our research into the future of work.