It’s no surprise that the biggest trend driving the energy and utilities industry through 2022 is “advances in new energy supplies and technologies,” according to the World Economic Forum’s “The Future of Jobs Report 2018.” Rounding out the top five are all hot technology advances driving growth in industries across the board, including: increasing availability of big data, advances in artificial intelligence, advances in cloud technology and advances in computing power.
Advances in new energy and supplies (and other growth drivers) will contribute to modifying the value chain, according to 78% of companies surveyed. And more than half expect these trends to modify locations of operation (52%) and expand task-specialized contractors (52%).
The top 10 technologies companies in the energy utilities industry are adopting:
- User and entity big data analytics (85%)
- Internet of things (85%)
- Machine learning (77%)
- Cloud computing (73%)
- New materials (65%)
- Augmented and virtual reality (65%)
- App- and web-enabled markets (65%)
- Digital trade (58%)
- Distributed ledger (blockchain) (54%)
- 3D printing (54%)
Roles in the energy industry will shift from 2018 through 2022. Emerging roles are heavily technology-driven: data analysts and scientists, organizational development specialists, renewable energy engineers, digital transformational specialists and big data specialists. On the contrary, administrative and manual labor roles are on the decline: data entry clerks; mechanics and machinery repairs; accounting, bookkeeping and payroll clerks; human resources specialists; and administrative and executive secretaries.
Most of the workforce in the energy utilities and technology industry will not need reskilling despite the fact that machines will increasingly take on more human task hours. This is especially apparent in performing physical and manual work activities (from 38% of hours being performed by machines in 2018 to 56% in 2022) and coordinating, developing, managing and advising (from 15% in 2018 to 25% in 2022).