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US, Indian Workforce To Be Impacted Most After Automation In IT, BPO

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A research on the impact of the emergence of Intelligent Automation on the global industry of IT services and BPO workers reveals a net decrease of 9 percent or 1.4 million jobs by 2021.

The HfS future workforce impact model predicts the likely impact of the most recent wave of automation on the IT Services and BPO industry. It has been estimated that currently, IT Service and BPO industry employs 15 million people, with 3.5 million in India, 1 million in the Philippines, 5 million in North America and 4 million in Europe.

The low-skilled positions are greatest at risk from robotic process automation - and US and Indian services workforce will be impacted the most, the research says.

India is set to lose 640,000 and the US 770,000 low-skilled positions by 2021. These are decreases of 28 percent and 33 percent respectively. This is largely because there are a large number of non-customer facing roles at the low-skill level in these countries, considering the amount of back office processing and IT support work that are likely to be automated and consolidated across a smaller number of workers.

On the flip side, the Philippines is expected to be the least impacted, due to its heavy reliance on voice-based customer support and high-touch healthcare operations work undertaken - and the location's reputation for low-cost, high-quality services.

At the same time, Philippines, UK and India are to benefit the most from medium/high skills job creation by 2021, the report says.

Overall, India's services industry is set to endure the largest negative impact with a 14% decline in its workforce.

The US service industry is also expected to suffer a notable decline with 12 percent total workforce reduction, while the Philippines is expected to increase overall by 8 percent.

The advantage will go to those nations investing in the next waves of opportunities, not those stubbornly resisting innovation and obsessively trying to protect legacy business models that won't be around in another decade.

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