Last updated: April 23, 2021
Workers and technology
In 2020, Community and the Fabian Society released a report called ‘Sharing the Future’, which was the product of two years of research and speaking to workers up and down the country, to understand how technology change will affect workers in the UK.
We know from the work we have done with members across the union that technology change is having a significant effect on the jobs we all do. Although technology has always changed the kind of jobs that we are doing it is doing so faster today than ever before.
At Community we believe the process of change can be managed in a way which helps all of us to adapt and grow. We recognise the opportunities for using technology to make work better for all of us.
You’ll see from your daily life the ways in which changing technology is making a difference for the better. We believe the same is possible in our workplaces. Technology can make industries across the UK more productive, which, if managed correctly, should ultimately put more money into our pockets.
Most estimates suggest it’s more likely that certain parts of a job will be automated than entire jobs being replaced. It’s more likely we’ll need to adapt, doing a variation of our current roles. 80% of the workforce of 2030 are already in the workplace. It’s not a problem for someone else. It’s a challenge for us, right here and now.
We cannot passively let technologies and big employers shape the future of work. We need to make sure that all workers have a voice, and the benefits of automation are shared so that nobody is left behind.
Some people will be affected worse than others. Evidence shows low paid jobs are more likely to be automated than higher paid ones, that women will be negatively impacted and that different areas of the country will benefit unequally from technology.
That’s why we need everyone: workers, employers, government, and unions to work together to make this change work.