Robotics, automation and artificial intelligence have the power to transform the workplace for all those employed, including senior management. Today everyone, especially senior leaders, must understand this challenge, stay ahead of it and create conditions to benefit from it. This is a sea change comparable to the industrial and agricultural revolutions in scope and effect. For those in the workforce, like past societal transformations, the digital/tech revolution involves disruption and displacement, and new ways and types of working.

Using U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Occupational Information Network (O*Net) data, McKinsey Global Institute analyzed automation’s potential workplace effect by examining more than 2,000 activities performed in more than 800 occupations. MGI quantified the time spent on specific activities and estimated the feasibility of automating them. Automation potential depends on technical feasibility, costs to automate relative to human wages, the availability of the skills that automation may replace, and consideration of social acceptance and regulation. 

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