Surviving the jobs revolution

DON’T bother asking your young child what they want to be when they grow up – such is the phenomenal pace of change, the job that they get probably doesn’t yet exist.

ACCORDING to Thomas Frey – futurist and founder of US think tank the DaVinci Institute – around 60 per cent of jobs we’ll be doing in 10 years time are yet to be invented.

And according to Vincent Creighton, head of Australia’s Open Training Institute, the massive surge of technology has already spawned a raft of new industries that did not exist a few years ago.


Mr Creighton says online shopping is forecast to be the nation’s second biggest growth industry behind oil and gas extraction.


Indeed, the biggest projects in Australia’s history will be the Gorgon ($52 billion) and Wheatstone ($29 billion) gas projects.


“When I was in school, online shopping didn’t even exist and the internet was in its infancy,” Mr Creighton says.


The simple but quantum moves from check-out chicks to automated check-outs and from paper books to ebooks are examples of Mr Creighton’s point.


He said the “frightening speed of change” was making workers obsolete at an unprecedented pace.


“Once upon a time, people would train for a particular industry, and they could reasonably expect that their training or qualification would last them a lifetime,” Mr Creighton says.


“The world just isn’t like that any more. For better or worse, lifelong learning has become a reality if you want to stay relevant at work.


“For example, you’d assume not a lot has changed in the craft of brick-laying in the past few thousand years, but you’d be wrong.


“Brickies, like lots of tradespeople, need to be well versed in workplace health and safety legislation and may need ongoing certification in order to be able to work.”


Which brings into play Mr Creighton’s organisation, the Open Training Institute. The OTI is backed by Open Universities Australia, Australia’s leader in online learning.


OTI offers myriad online courses, including human resources, project managing and marketing.


Research and statistics organisation, IBISWorld has put online education sixth on its list of fastest growing industries.


Mr Creighton says higher education has moved from being the exclusive domain of school leavers, but is now vital for adults looking to sharpen or change their skills.


“People need options that allow them to study while maintaining their family lives and keeping up with full-time work,” he says.


“For many, online study is the only way they can do it.”




*Oil and gas extraction


*Online shopping


*Preschool education


*Mining support services


*Aged care


*Online education


*Diagnostic imaging services


*Art and non-vocational education


*Computer system design services


*Courier pick-up and delivery services


Sources: Thomas Frey, author of Communicating with the Future, and IBISWorld via


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