With the advancement in Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the labor industry, a number of existing jobs in the market is at risk.
During the hearing of the Senate Committee on Science and Technology on the effects of AI to current jobs, the Union Network International-Philippine Liaison Council (UNI-PLC) told committee chairman Senator Bam Aquino that around 60 percent of work, especially in the business process outsourcing industry, will be affected.
However, the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) mentioned that around 40,000 workers in the contact center industry will be lost.
“The best way to protect ourselves is to move our workers up the skill ladder. This is best done by having opportunities for education and by upgrading skills, retooling and retraining industry workers,” said Aquino.
“We cannot wait for this downturn in jobs to happen before we prepare. Kailangang handa na tayo ngayon,” stressed the legislator as he called on education institutions to check if the skills they are providing are the ones needed by industry workers to upgrade their abilities to the next level.
“This way, we can ensure that we will able to maximize opportunities presented in Artificial Intelligence,” said the lawmaker, adding that around 250,000 to 300,000 fresh jobs will be created once contact center workers are given the capability to perform higher-level jobs, such as data analysis and data programming.
“Mahalaga ring matiyak na mayroong academic-industry linkage. Kaya ba ng ating mga eskuwelahan na itulak ang kakayahan ng ating mga kababayan upang gawin ang mga bagong trabahong ito?” the youthful senator questioned.
He said the BPO industry must work hand-in-hand with concerned government agencies, such as the Department of Education (DepEd), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to ensure that the country is prepared for any eventuality if the implementation of AI goes into full swing.