Be Ready to Surf the 4.0 Wave

4.0 wave

At the dawn of the 4th Industrial Revolution, those who become aware and prepared for the future professions and competencies required, will successfully surf the 4.0 wave.

The world of work is changing fast, as the Fourth Industrial Revolution is impacting livelihoods and generating demand for new skills. Upskilling the workforce was already high on the global agenda before the advent of COVID-19, which added more pressure for a better equipped workforce as of today.

In order to elaborate how education can empower people and become an enabling instrument to promote sustainable growth, we need first to understand the context in which we are all included.  Afterall, what are the characteristics of the 4.0 World?

Industrial Revolution 4.0

The Fourth Industrial Revolution, also known as 4.0 IR, is a complete and distinct one that presents 3 main characteristics: velocity, scope, and systems impact. 

According to PhD Klaus Schwab in his book The Fourth Industrial Revolution, the speed of current breakthroughs has no historical precedent. When compared with previous industrial revolutions, the Fourth is evolving at an exponential rather than a linear pace. 

Moreover, it is disrupting almost every industry in every country. And the heart of these changes is  the transformation impact in all life´s dimensions and certainly the way public and private sectors operate and conduct business. 

Industrial Revolution | At a Glance

1760 – The First Industrial Revolution used water and steam power to mechanize production.

1850-  The Second used electric power to create mass production. 

1950- The Third used electronics and information technology to automate production. 

2000 – The Fourth is a digital revolution that  is characterized by a fusion of physical, digital, biological and artificial intelligence all combined in infinite numbers of ways.

Jobs 4.0 | Seven Professional Clusters

Some people may feel concerned about this new world in which physical, digital, biological and artificial intelligence will interact with us in new ways and that the human element in our society may be lost. But according to an extensive research entitled: “Jobs of Tomorrow – Mapping Opportunity in the New Economy” carried out by The World Economic Forum in January 2020 in partnership with Linkedin and other companies, shows that there will still be demand for both “digital” and “human” factors to drive growth in the future.

The research goes further and identified seven key professional clusters with emerging growth trends:

4.0 wave
  1.  Data and AI
  2.  Care Economy
  3.  Green Economy
  4.  Engineering and Cloud Computing
  5.  People and Culture
  6.  Product Development
  7.  Sales, Marketing and Content

Collectively, these professions are set to yield millions of new job opportunities in this decade.

These professional clusters reflect the significant diversity of opportunity in the labor market, and offer opportunities for both high- and low-skilled employment. 

Despite overwhelming public focus on disruptive technological skills, this research shows the diverse skill sets in demand in the future. While disruptive technology skills such as data science and AI skills will certainly be critical to the future of work, so will caregiving, leadership, and the ability to provide learning and development. 

In other words, the transition to the 4.0 world of work will be both human- and tech-centric.

The highest-demand skills required in these emerging professional clusters span both technical and cross-functional skills. 

Professional 4.0 | Five Skills-Set Clusters

The 4.0 era will transform the way we work and this will represent an opportunity for public and private sectors to step-up and take the lead on what skills-set professionals must have, not only to ensure their readiness but also to equip students to join more prepared in the labor market. 

Increasing demand for high-growth professions has further driven the value of a range of distinctive skill sets that underwrite these seven professional clusters and their promise of growth and prosperity in the new economy. 

These in-demand skills can be divided into five distinct skills clusters:

4.0 wave

1. Business Skills:

These are the set of skills required to operate ior start an enterprise. The cluster includes skills such as Marketing, Project Management, Budgeting and Business Development. 

2. Specialized Industry Skills:

These skills are specific to the field of the segment and professions in question, and it may vary a lot, such as Documentation in Cloud Computing, Video and Editing in Marketing, Sales, Hybrid Work and labor law in Human Resources.

3. General and Soft Skills:

This is a very broad spectrum, it includes global citizenship, learning agility, sustainability, diversity and inclusion, innovation, analytical thinking, interpersonal emotional intelligence, empathy, cooperation and social awareness. 

Also known  as cross-functional skills, are typically those needed across all professions. These include Leadership, Communication, Negotiation, Creativity, Problem-Solving, Teamwork in virtual environments. 

4. Tech Baseline Skills:

These are the digital skills, that includes Basic Computer Literacy, such as the ability to use collaborative tools, such as (Microsoft Productivity Suites, Google Suite, etc), digital responsibility, information security, alongside industry-specific applications of technology such as Web Design, Online Marketing, Social Media, Telecommunications, Drafting and Engineering Design Software, as well as Medical and Clinical Software.

5. Tech Disruptive Skills:

Those are that allow individuals to use and design technologies that are set to impact business models and the labor market in significant ways over the coming years. These include Data Science, Natural Language Processing, Automation, Robotics, Cloud Computing and Cybersecurity.

Education 4.0 | The Foundation for a Inclusive Brighter Future

In a 4.0 era, primary and secondary school systems have a critical role to play in preparing the global citizens and workforces of the future. 

Many of today’s school children will work in new job types that do not yet exist, most of which are likely to have an increased premium on both digital and social-emotional skills. 

They will be introduced to wholly new business models whose workforces are much more distributed. In an increasingly interconnected world, future workers will be expected to collaborate with peers residing in various parts of the globe, understand cultural nuances and, in many cases, use digital tools to enable these new types of interactions. 

Yet many education systems in developed and developing economies alike still rely heavily on passive forms of learning focused on direct instruction and memorization, rather than interactive methods that promote the critical and individual thinking needed in today’s innovation-driven economy.

In this context, education, business and public-sector leaders must think beyond ‘business-as-usual’. Transitioning all education systems to fit the 4.0 IR because it has a tremendous potential to better prepare children for the future of work.

Schwab calls for leaders and citizens to

together shape a future that works for all by putting people first, empowering them and constantly reminding ourselves that all of these new technologies are first and foremost tools made by people for people.”

Learning how humankind can benefit from this revolution while addressing its challenges is something that must be a top priority for leaders from public and private sectors to find ways we might take collective responsibility to ensure an inclusive brighter future for all of us.

Vá mais longe, brilhe e transcenda!

Olá! Eu sou Giselle Garau. 

Meu propósito de vida é INSPIRAR e APOIAR pessoas e empresas, para ativarem o protagonismo  para atingir resultados extraordinários, em suas  carreiras e vidas.

Sou Administradora , com MBA Executivo Internacional e 20+ anos de experiência em Gestão Estratégica de Recursos Humanos, trabalhando na Índia, EUA e Brasil.


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