by Candice Arnold, CMO of Eggplant 

learning, digital experienceIn today’s digital world, location is no longer relevant when it comes to working so long as employees stay ahead of their task delivery.

I’ve made it a habit to remind my team that I do not mind where they choose to get their work done – whether sitting on a sofa or on a beach – as long as they stay ahead and manage to get their to-dos completed.

As a CMO, the always-on, always-available mindset has shaped my marchitecture landscape, choosing applications that make remote work easy, visible and promote collaboration. This has meant that despite our distance, we continue to collaborate with newly found vigour using technology to the fullest.

Surprisingly, working from home due to the pandemic has had unexpected benefits, such as saving me a three-hour commute each day and allowing me to use this extra time to take on more creative tasks – which typically require the time and space to think, research and brainstorm with others. And of course, like many parents around the globe right now, I am taking on the added responsibilities of other jobs too, including teacher, chef, fitness coach and clown to my rambunctious bunch.

Sadly, not all industries have the option of working from home, which is costing women in particular their jobs.

Transitioning Occupations to Overcome Automation 

Due to the current pandemic, about 60% of jobs lost in April belonged to women, which feels like reversal of progress. Women faced greater losses than men in nearly all sectors that faced redundancies. I have been reminded of the need for women to retool with the start of my teenage daughter’s A-Level politics course. She has selected New Age Feminism as her first Ideology and it has reacquainted me with some of the harrowing statistics women find themselves hostage to.

Technological innovations are removing jobs women are inclined to take, especially in industries that are ripe for automation such as healthcare, hospitality and many other clerical functions. Sadly, over 100 million women could find their jobs displaced by automation unless they look to other industries. As more industries digitally transform, the future of the workplace is changing, with a heightened reliance on technology to handle work processes.

A report released last year by McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) titled, The future of women at work: Transitions in the age of automation set out eloquently the importance for women to retool in an automation age. The prospect of technological unemployment is getting ever closer with daily innovations threatening jobs. The ways in which women work in their current jobs are also likely to change as organisations increasingly adopt new technologies.

In order to obtain new opportunities or keep their current roles, female workers will need to re-skill to meet the demand for jobs that offer a higher salary or enter ones that will be relevant in the future.

Using Automation as an Advantage

According to LinkedIn, only 22 percent of people working in AI globally are women. To change this, education needs to be geared towards encouraging skills for the future and bringing awareness of careers in technology and automation. As a woman in the automation industry, it’s important to see automation as a productivity motivator that is driving new opportunities – both financially and personally – by creating new jobs or the ability to work less hours.

Looking ahead, we need a critical number of women in positions of power and need to nurture the feminine energy in men. Rolling up our sleeves and making this world good is no longer a choice.