Last Updated on August 25, 2023 by Robert C. Hoopes
Title: Rise of Large Language Models (LLMs) Exposes Higher-Education Office Workers to Automation
In a significant departure from previous automation trends, large language models (LLMs) are now threatening office jobs that demand cognitive skills, creativity, and higher levels of education. This new form of automation, which employs artificial intelligence systems to process information and generate content, is impacting highly paid workers, particularly women.
Traditionally, automation has largely affected less educated workers in manufacturing jobs. However, with the advent of LLMs like ChatGPT and Google’s Bard, the trend is shifting. These advanced systems are now targeting roles that were once considered safe from technological disruption.
According to research, highly paid workers are most at risk of being affected by LLM automation. Women, in particular, face a slightly higher likelihood of being impacted. This revelation has surprised experts like Erik Brynjolfsson, a professor at the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered A.I., who didn’t anticipate such significant job displacement in fields requiring creativity and cognitive skills.
Studies conducted using the Labor Department’s O*Net database have identified a considerable number of occupations where LLMs could assist with tasks. It is estimated that LLMs could potentially contribute to around one-fifth to one-quarter of all jobs, underscoring the sizeable impact this new form of automation could have.
Both Pew Research Center and Goldman Sachs analyses have revealed that LLMs have the potential to undertake certain tasks in a majority of occupations. This means that no sector or profession can claim immunity from the rise of LLM automation.
The introduction of LLMs into the workforce has sparked discussions about the future role of humans in jobs that require creativity, professional skills, and emotional intelligence. As these models become more advanced and capable, it becomes imperative for organizations and individuals to adapt and explore ways to work collaboratively with these technologies, rather than be displaced by them.
The advent of LLMs heralds a new era in automation, where jobs that traditionally relied on higher education and cognitive abilities are no longer exempt. The impact of LLM automation underscores the need for individuals to continually update their skills and adapt to the changing dynamics of the job market, ensuring they remain valuable contributors in an increasingly automated world.