An estimated 40% of Singapore and Thailand workforce needs to reskill as a result of implementing AI and automation over the next three years, according to a new global study by the IBM Institute for Business Value.
Pressing workforce issues
The new study “Augmented work for an automated, AI-driven world” also reveals that skills are the most pressing issue in the workforce for Singapore and Thailand.
In Singapore, the top most pressing issues for executives are the availability of external skills and building new skills for existing workforce. Instead of hiring from the outside (38%), respondents prefer to invest in reskilling (62%).
The most pressing issues for Thailand executives are adapting to hybrid working models (61%) and availability of external skills (53%). Surveyed executives in Thailand prefer to invest in reskilling (54%), than hiring externally (46%).
Employees report engaging in impactful work is one of their top priorities, contrary to employers identifying impactful work as the least important factor to the workforce.
The study recommends that Human Resource should take the front seat in defining organisations’ strategy for digital transformation and redesigning work processes in the era of AI. Among specific suggestions is to redesign work itself and not just skills or organisation structure alone, to invest in talent as much as technology and to give jobs more meaning by giving autonomy to employees.
“The enterprise of tomorrow cannot run with yesterday’s talent, and it’s time to prepare the workforces for new applications of AI. Combining human expertise and knowledge of complex business processes with AI tools will enable companies to create new opportunities and accomplish business outcomes faster than before,” said Lai Yee Ng, manager partner of IBM Consulting, Singapore.
Around 3000 C-suite executives in 20 industries and in 28 countries, including in Singapore and Thailand took part in the study.