Where are Workers the Most at Risk of Losing Jobs to Automation?
From automotive manufacturing to cashiers, automation has already started to disrupt occupations and industries across the country. Machines and robots have replaced humans for various work-related tasks and will continue to do so in the coming years, but just how big of an impact will automation be within every state?
Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Statistics, we analyzed which jobs are most susceptible to automation and determined the percent of potential jobs lost to automation in all 50 states.
In order to create a foundation for this analysis, we looked at the top 170 most “at-risk” occupations, according to the University of Oxford’s “The Future of Employment: How Susceptible are Jobs to Computerisation” study. This study analyzed the probability of automation for 702 detailed occupations by using an algorithm that considered several factors within each occupation including negotiation, social perceptiveness, manual dexterity, persuasion and originality.
When looking at the data, it’s clear that no state is immune to automation. Overall, roughly 41 million, or 28% of all U.S. jobs, are most susceptible to automation. Occupations within the service industry are some of the hardest hit in terms of being at risk for automation, specifically cashiers, retail salespersons and fast food employees.
In terms of states that could see the most potential job loss due to automation, South Dakota ranks No. 1 with 33.5%, or roughly 141,360 jobs lost. Nevada ranks No. 2 with 437,590 jobs lost, or 32.5% of the current workforce. Meanwhile, Florida ranks No. 2 with 2,709,720 jobs lost, or 31.5% of the current workforce. And the hardest hit occupation in all three states? Retail salespersons.
Automation in Metro Cities
We also looked at automation on a more granular level by analyzing the percent of potential jobs lost within the 50 largest metropolitan areas. Texas has three metro areas all within the top 10 cities on our list that could experience the largest amount of jobs lost, including the San Antonio, Dallas and Houston metro areas. However, it’s Florida which is home to the most cities within the top 10 list. Four metro areas in the Sunshine State including Miami, Tampa, Orlando and Jacksonville could all see 29% or more of their current workforce lost to automation, or 5.8 million jobs.
Automation has the potential to fundamentally transform industries, jobs and lives, but the scale and pace of that transformation remains to be seen. As automation continues to make advancements in both our personal and professional lives, it will be interesting to see how industries and people adapt to these changes.
Using data from the University of Oxford’s “The Future of Employment: How Susceptible are Jobs to Computerisation” study, we analyzed occupations that are the most susceptible to automation. The “Future of Employment” study analyzed the probability of automation for 702 detailed occupations. From that list, we analyzed the top 170 most “at-risk” occupations and compiled the number of employees within those occupations for each state as well as 350 metro areas using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Statistics. Based on the 170 most “at-risk” occupations, 41,067,920, or 28% of all U.S. jobs, are most susceptible to automation.
University of Oxford’s The Future of Employment: How Susceptible are Jobs to Computerisation
Bureau of Labor Statistics
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