Lead story - Who’s afraid of losing their job to a robot? Not most American workers, new study claims by Jerry Bowles
MyPOV: Jerry breaks down a jobs study so optimistic, you'd think that robots were hiring unemployed humans off of street corners, and then conducting the survey. To be fair, plenty of jobs reports are not as sunny as this one from Sykes Enterprises.
Jerry quotes Ian Barkin, Sykes' chief strategy and marketing officer,
What we found in our research is actually that over 70% of employees today would be thrilled to work side by side with automation that enabled them to be better, more effective, more accurate and faster at their jobs.
Thrilled eh? More from Barkin:
An overwhelming majority of those surveyed have never lost a job due to new automation technologies at their workplace--and most also noted they do not worry about losing a job due to intelligent automation. Only about 5% say they have faced job loss.
Jerry contrasts these upbeat findings with a starker Pew Research survey from 2018.
I had a darker view on robots-and-jobs a few years ago. Now I'm ready to concede that in the shorter time horizon, there is more of an "augmented intelligence" at work, rather than the kind of robotic intelligence that would eliminate jobs en masse.
That doesn't change the blunt fact: organizations can - and do - use today's automation tech as an efficiency play. Headcount can be reduced. Some companies - well documented on diginomica - have found a good balance, by automating the mundane and moving workers into higher value/customer-facing roles.
Still, those who think they know how this plays out come off as unbearably smug. As Jerry cautions:
Nobody has a great understanding yet of how this human plus robot thing is going to work out but it's going to be a central issue of the Fourth Revolution.
The Pew study illustrates how expanding the time horizon creates more uncertainty, and rightly so:
About eight-in-ten U.S. adults (82%) said that by 2050, robots and computers will definitely or probably do much of the work currently done by humans.
Jerry warns that the biggest danger to optimistic jobs data is passivity. I agree. The future of work is not some kind of "rising tide raises all boats" benevolence. It's an ongoing problem.
Diginomica picks - my top stories on diginomica this week
- Is Lands End's cliffhanger crisis over as retailer finds firmer ground for uni-channel growth? - Retailers don't have much time to regroup from Black Friday and charge onward (as per Adobe, the $5.4 billion spent online this Black Friday notched a new record). Stuart revisits a retailer in an (encouraging) rebound mode - but can Lands End leave the "Sears Effect" behind for good?
- Don't ask for attention, earn it - how to make better sales videos and emails using the loyalty loop - Barb lands my diginomica quote of the week, on the nuisance of the premature sales call: "We want 30 minutes of our audience's attention without earning it." So how do you avoid that fate? By pulling off "a moment of commitment" where a prospect perceives the value, and moves forward.
Vendor analysis, diginomica style. Here's my top choices from our vendor coverage:
AWS re:Invent shows that it's Amazon's world, we're just paying rent to live in it - Amazon unloaded enough announcements at re:Invent to make even the most seasoned PR person holler for espresso. In his roundup, Kurt fared better. After noting Amazon's confident indifference to "multi-cloud," he concludes: "Other cloud providers are on notice that AWS is playing for keeps, not just a small piece of the enterprise pie." At the heart of 90 or so press releases is this:
Re:Invent 2019 shows an AWS unabashedly promoting a cloud-native future with AWS at its center.
Does that render the data center irrelevant. Not necessarily - but it's not at the center either:
While the vision doesn't banish corporate data centers to oblivion, it does render them secondary, as necessary appendages to the AWS environment where required by law or regulation (data privacy) or performance.
More vendor picks:
- NetSuite's next steps - a conversation with founder Evan Goldberg - Not long ago, Brian issued a monster series on Oracle's resurgence. Now he fills in the NetSuite angle.
- Workday posts strong Q3, cautiously eyes growth in financials - Phil on Workday's cautious optimism - and, the big story to watch - Workday's financials traction.
- Moving past the 'growing pains' of 2019 - Zuora CEO Tien Tzuo talks customer diversity, product integration and platform take-up - Stuart updates on a year of lessons learned for this subscription economy advocate.
crashed disrupted covered the SAP UK & Ireland SAP User Group conference, and emerged with a fistful of unflinching editorial: SAP customers are revolting - here's why, Trust is top of mind at UK and Ireland SAP User Group Connect 2019, and Jazz Pharmaceuticals goes SAP S/4HANA on private AWS.
If I'm SAP's new leadership team, I take these missives as motivational fuel. I've always said, the best rebuttal is a slew of happy - and vocal - customers...
A few more vendor picks, without the quips:
- Salesforce co-CEOs talk customers, Tableau and having "our own Brexit" as Q3 revenues rise 33% - Stuart
- Hays taps into Google Cloud to improve job conversion rate by 10% - Sooraj
- Obeikan Investment Group shares transformation field lessons, and results to date - Jon (Infor use case)
- In praise of the 'Spend Setters' - Coupa CEO highlights customers, community and collaboration - Stuart
Jon's grab bag - Next up in my fall event highlights series: what I learned by pressing an identity expert on his views: Constellation Research's Steve Wilson says digital identity is dead, so where do we go from here? And: Neil Raden is upbeat about... facial recognition? Well, not really, but he's willing to listen to upstart firms: Facial recognition revisited - can it save lives and actually protect privacy?
Finally, Brian and I conducted our annual subversion of the
vacant absurd ridonkulous non-event known as the toxic guru festival tech predictions in The 2020 enterprise software un-predictions. Readers enjoyed riffing on our new tech words for 2020, including "Platulence: the result of marketers hyping up a pile of unrelated micro-services as a 'platform.'"
Best of the rest
My top seven from the enterprise web starts with RedMonk's Stephen O'Grady, who breaks out five things to take way from re:Invent 2019. Of particular interest: how Amazon is positioning against Microsoft/Github, and whether the latter may pose a long-term threat.
We revisit the identity theme in this one from Steve Zurier: Mega Breaches Are Forcing Us to a Passwordless. Yes, we've been here before, but Zurier takes a similar stance as Steve Wilson: this time, it's different. Zurier:
While it's true the industry has been slow to change, a closer look reveals that much progress has been made in 2019. For example, Microsoft and Google now support passwordless standard FIDO2, and Apple made it clear it intends to support FIDO2 for its Safari browser In another important move, Apple says iOS 13.3 (likely available early in 2020) will support popular FIDO-compliant authentication devices like the YubiKey.
- The New RPA Manifesto: Follow HFS’ Ten Laws of Robotic Process Automation to create a Thriving Industry - Another week at HfS, another RPA missive from HfS Research. Much of this is common sense, yet, elusive to capture on project sites. I like law four: Treat RPA as an enterprise application. As Phil Fersht writes: "If you view RPA as a widget or productivity utility, then it has no chance of supporting broader digital change."
- What Is 'Cloud Native' (and Why Does It Matter)? - Two important questions, neither of them easy to answer. The New Stack gives it a go.
- The next generation of user experience is artificially intelligent - an optimistic headline from Joe McKendrick - I'm not counting on user experiences to get intelligent anytime soon - but what he's getting at makes sense.
- After 5,981 sexual assaults, is Uber safe? Look deeper - Without Bullshit's Josh Bernoff parses some alarming-looking stats, putting them in a needed context.
- A shared micromobility development model, and a Munich case study - "Micomobility" hasn't transformed urban gridlock yet, but McKinsey looks at a city that is taking the potential impact of e-scooters and other portables seriously.
Another entry in the "who needs fiction?" category:
Art Basel removes $120,000 banana-taped-to-wall art exhibit - https://t.co/OJxo3cvvOp
"The valuable fruit was plucked off the wall and eaten by performance artist David Datuna on Saturday in front of a roomful of stunned art aficionados."
-> a Miami Beach controversy :)
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) December 8, 2019
Via Brian Sommer, a whiff that can evidently land you in jail:
Australian woman jailed after lying on resume https://t.co/ocitaW0eqA
-> via @brianssommer we have this doozy
I wrote a book on Resumes from Hell, and even there no one's resume had landed them in jail. Oh boy.
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) December 5, 2019
Meanwhile, it's been a couple of weeks, but I'm still miffed at "Mr. Brandon" for leaving my millions in airport storage:
I was initially excited by this email of my financial windfall by Mr. Brandon, but disappointment set in when I learned each trunk metal box, weighing 45 lbs each and holding $4 million, "are still left in the airport facility storage as of today."
Dude??? You left them there? pic.twitter.com/WFdhXbKLHo
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) December 1, 2019
On a more serious note, Apple whiffs a bit here:
Apple Explains Mysterious iPhone 11 Location Requests — Krebs on Security https://t.co/9J8jfGplVS
-> for Apple to claim the lead on privacy and then allow this to happen, while offering sluggish (or no) responses to criticism, puts them in contention for a hypocrisy award
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) December 6, 2019
Finally, the infamous Peloton ad whiff was a bizarro one, where the ad itself was hardly the biggest whiff - all the things around the ad, from Peloton's self-righteous PR play, to the social hate sent to the male actor in the ad (as if the character were a real person), loomed larger than the goofiness of the ad itself. It's not an ad I would have green-lighted, but it's not the biggest offense against western civilization either. Just that same week, a far more ridiculous ad surfaced. But then, our viral outrage is nothing if not curiously selective.
That said, lemonade from someone else's lemons tastes especially sweet, eh?
'Peloton Wife' shows up in ad for Ryan Reynolds' gin company that spoofs infamous Peloton ad https://t.co/sgCKHortDA
-> a clever bit of turnabout indeed.....
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) December 7, 2019
See you next time..
If you find an #ensw piece that qualifies for hits and misses - in a good or bad way - let me know in the comments as Clive (almost) always does. Most Enterprise hits and misses articles are selected from my curated @jonerpnewsfeed. 'myPOV' is borrowed with reluctant permission from the ubiquitous Ray Wang.