10 professions popular today that will not be needed in 20 years
Following up on yesterday's list, I thought about what professions people might be preparing for today that will NOT be in demand in, say, 20 years. I don't think all of these will completely disappear. It's just that someone who wants to continue in them will have to find a way to differentiate themselves by, for instance, adding a unique service or personalization to keep the profession viable. After all, there are buggy-whip makers now. But they're specialized artisans, and there aren't a lot of them.
Also, it's worth noting that many of the jobs listed below are already being replaced by technology and automation, and it's likely that this trend will continue in the coming years. However, it's also important to note that as certain jobs become obsolete, new jobs will likely be created to take their place, at least some of which will draw on the same skill set.
Image by Brigitte Werner from Pixabay
1. Travel agent
The rise of online booking platforms and travel websites has made it easy for individuals to plan and book their own travel, reducing the need for travel agents. However, I think that people who can creatively put together boutique packages and travel events may carve out a space with little competition.
2. Bank teller
Automated teller machines (ATMs) and online banking have made it possible for individuals to perform many banking transactions without the need for human tellers. Offering personalized banking services may be a possible branch of this.
3. Retail cashier
Self-checkout machines and online shopping have made it possible for individuals to make purchases without the need for cashiers. Though it would take fewer people, having highly trained "high touch" consultants available may be a viable alternative, and someone will have to make sure the checkout machines work properly to avoid alienating customers.
4. Typist/data entry clerk
The widespread use of computer software and tools such as speech recognition and optical character recognition (OCR) have made it possible for individuals to enter data without the need for typists or data entry clerks. While speech recognition is improving and making entry easier, there will still need to be people who can knowledgeably organize data for human understanding, though not as many as we might think. AI will be able to fit data into recognized templates for much of this.
5. Postal worker
The decline in the use of traditional mail and the rise of email and online communication have reduced the need for postal workers. The business of shipping physical products remains viable, but that doesn't require as many workers.
6. Telemarketing/telephone sales
The rise of online marketing and advertising, as well as the growing use of caller ID and call blocking technologies, have made it more difficult for telemarketers to reach potential customers.
7. Film laboratory technician
The widespread adoption of digital cameras and the decline of traditional film photography have reduced the need for film laboratory technicians.
8. News reporter (for print publications)
The rise of online news sources and the decline of print publications have reduced the need for news reporters working in print media. This is a perfect area to illustrate the transfer of skill sets, since online news sources still benefit from those skills. Whether the market will recognize the value of such skills when the general public seems quite ready to accept ridiculous material as factual remains to be seen.
9. Bookkeeper (manual)
The widespread use of accounting software and digital record-keeping has made it possible for individuals to perform bookkeeping tasks without the need for manual bookkeepers.
10. Map maker (traditional)
The rise of digital maps and navigation apps, as well as the availability of satellite imagery, has made it possible for individuals to access and create maps without the need for traditional map makers.