Modern technological advances have instilled fear in many consumers. One prospect in particular, automation of the workforce, raises serious concerns over job security for many people. However, this anxiety over job stability risks rendering them blind to the benefits that stand to be gained from an increasingly automatized workforce. The automation of various business operations will enhance productivity, especially in the realm of more menial tasks. If automation can take over more tedious responsibilities, like sifting through endless rows of data, people will have the freedom to explore more creative and innovative pursuits. Workforce automation will also allow for greater product personalization because a one-size-fits-all approach to software will be tossed aside in favor of programs that are tailored to the individual.
The ultimate goal of this kind of automation isn’t to take over people’s jobs; it’s to allow people to focus more energy on creative work rather than execution (Innovation Excellence, 2016).
While there is no reason to fear automation, a very real threat exists in the power other technological offerings have in further threatening social division. The reality of the impending Digital Divide cannot be ignored. A majority of people in the U.S. believe that future technological enhancements could “exacerbate the divide between the haves and have nots.” For example, if brain chip implants become available, 73% of adults believe inequality will increase because the wealthy will be the first to be able to afford them (Pew Research Center, 2016).
Whether creating or embracing new technologies, consumer pain points surrounding the fears and uncertainties of new developments need to be addressed. There is also benefit to be had in taking a step back from trying to pioneer new technological advancements and working to provide already established developments to people who might not have access to it.