Advanced Workplace Robots and Implications for Recruitment Strategies
Advanced WorkplaceRobots andImplications forRecruitment StrategiesGarry G. Mathiason, Esq.Chairman of the BoardLittler Mendelson, P.C.Wednesday, April 17, 2013
During the next 50minutes, you are invited tojourney into the near futuretransformation of theworkplace powered byAdvanced Robotics andArtificial Intelligence.
This journey will lead topractical recommendationsfor recruiting strategies thatcan be implementedtoday, this week, throughoutthe year and the decade.
The Journey’s FiveDestinations1. Advanced Robotics and AI Reshapingthe Workplace and Employment.2. Sourcing Non-Human Talent and theExpanded Role of the Chief TalentOfficer.3. The Changing Skill Shortage Challengein the Robotized Workplace.4. Robotizing the CorporateRecruitment Team.5. Eight Practical Recommendations.
J-1: The Next Twelve Years Robots have been a part of ourculture for a century and theworkplace for 50 years. Why will what is happening duringthe next 12 years fundamentallychange the recruiting industry, thepractice of law, and almost everyknown profession?
J-1: Robotics Is The New Internet“Robotics is one of the few technologies that hasthe potential to have an impact as transformative asthe Internet.”
By 2025 Robots Will Have Taken OverHalf The Jobs In the United States!Christie Nicholson, SmartPlanet, August 24, 2011
J-1: Robotics Defined Automation has been part ofhuman history since thebeginning when man picked up astick using it as a tool andinevitably a weapon. Similarly there has been anintense debate regardingwhether automation eliminatesmore jobs than it creates. On January 13, 2013, 60 Minutesreported on the RoboticsRevolution and contemporizedthe jobs debate.
60 Minutes, March of the Machines, January 2013
J-1: Robotics in Healthcare Evidence of this advanceis not just in theimmediate future, it ishere now, especially inthe field of medicine. The Atlantic, March2013. The 60 Minutes ProgramContinued:
60 Minutes, March of the Machines, January 2013
J-1: Robots and the Pharmacist Shortage The role of robots in the pharmacy isactually an old story. In 2003, a St. Louis Hospital startedusing robots to fill syringes because oflabor shortages and lawsuits (errors). 3 million were filled with zero knownerrors. 2008 was declared the year of the I.V.Robot. Today, no one could developrecruitment strategies for hospitals orpharmacies without a detailedknowledge of industry robots.January 10, 2008August, 2008
Da Vinci Robot “Arrives” The ultimate signthat hospital roboticshas reached themainstream occurswhen plaintiffattorneys takenotice. The Da Vinci robothas recently achievedthis sign of “arriving.”Lawyers andSettlements.com, “Da VinciRobot Injury: When the Scalpelis held by a Machine,” GordonGibb, April 13, 2013.
J-1: Alleged Da Vinci Robot Injury The legal attack focuses on the misuse of the newtechnology, not the technology itself. Insufficient training claimed. Unsupervised surgery too soonafter initial training alleged. Plaintiff Argument: Cost of equipmentcausing robot to be used for surgerybeyond what it is qualified to perform.
J-1:Robotics in the Global WorkplaceThe New York Times, August 18, 2012At the Philips Electronicsfactory on the coast ofChina, hundreds of workers usetheir hands and specializedtools to assemble electricshavers. That is the old way.At a sister factory here in theDutch countryside, 128 robotarms do the same work withyoga-like flexibility. Videocameras guide them throughfeats well beyond the capabilityof the most dexterous human.…All told, the factory here hasseveral dozen workers pershift, about a tenth as many asthe plant in the Chinese city ofZhuhai.
J-1: Robotics in the Global WorkplaceThe New York Times, August 18, 201220…robotics executives argue that eventhough blue-collar jobs will be lost, moreefficient manufacturing will create skilledjobs in designing, operating and servicingthe assembly lines, as well as significantnumbers of other kinds of jobs in thecommunities where factories are.
J-1: Advanced Robotics/AIWhy is this promise ofrobotics more crediblethan the failed promises ofthe past?Exponential technologies
J-1: Advanced Robotics/AI Cloud Computing—InformationTechnology and Self Learning. Advanced Sensor Technology. Data Analytics (Big Data). Communications Decency Actof 1996, Section 230. Dropping cost of open sourcerobotic platforms.
J-1: Rethink Robotics and Baxter The affordablemultipurpose robot hasarrived. Baxter is at work nowacross the globe. Baxter is people-friendlyand co-workerprogrammable. The unit price is not $1million, nor $500,000, it is$22,000.
J-1: Rethink Robotics and Baxter FDL News Deck, March 27, 2013“Technological UnemploymentTo Hit Service Sector,” D.S.Wright Scott Eckert, CEO of RethinkRobotics “envisions somethingsimilar to Apple’s app storehappening for Baxter. A spiffed-up version of the robot couldsoon be seen flipping burgers atMcDonalds, folding t-shirts atGap, or pouring coffee atStarbucks.”
J-1: Robotics/AI Are Arriving How real are theabove reports andpredictions? Participation inSingularityUniversity’s MarchExecutive Program. The Google Car willbe on the market in2015-16.
J-1: Robotics/AI Are Arriving San FranciscoChronicle, April14, 2013. Xconomy/SRIForum in MenloPark. Change Forecastwithin this decade.
J-!: Robotics/AI Are Arriving Littler forming a Robotics Law Practice Group. The growth of technology is unstoppable, but overcominglegal roadblocks and side streets will reduce the trauma.Anticipating workforce changes is critical. Key legal Issues: Privacy,Health & Safety, HumanDisplacement, AgeDiscrimination, CollectiveBargaining WARNnotices, Severance Pay andreleases, and many more.
J-1: Robotics/AI Are Arriving January 2014 Report to the EU Parliament on NeededRegulations and Laws.
Journey Two:Sourcing Non-Human Talentand theExpanded Roleof the ChiefTalent Officer
J-2: Sourcing Non-Human Talent Whether the recruiting teamsupplies robots or not, knowingthe state of the talent market andthe applicable technologies isessential. Robotics is advancing in partbecause it offers solutions totalent challenges (e.g. the shortageof pharmacists and the needs ofan aging population).
J-2: Sourcing Non-Human Talent Consider factors beyond atalent shortage: dangerousjobs often not serviceable bypeople (e.g. deep seaconstruction); human errors;dirty, dull and undesirablework. Consider telepresencerobotics—a universe ofpersonal assistants. Robotically enhancedhumans (exoskeletons).
J-2: Role of the Chief Talent Officer Chief Talent Officers come under avariety of titles performing the role ofensuring the organization has thenecessary talent to successfullyfunction. For start-uporganizations, the CTO is often theCEO. It is impossible for a CTO or CRO tocarry out his or her duties withoutunderstanding the Robotics/AIrevolution. Decisions historically based on humantalent now has a much more complexset of options.
J-2: Myths One and Two Myth One: The organizationdoes not want the involvementof the Chief Talent Officer (VicePresident of Talent) in planningfor technology needs ortechnology-related RIOdecisions. Myth Two: In deciding betweenproven robotic-based talentsolutions and human talent, RIOis the key barometer.
J-2: Myth Three Myth Three: One cannotplan for the arrival of roboticsystems that are unforeseenor distant.─ The most clearly false myth ofthe three.─ The arrival of the contingentworkforce provides a win-winsolution for needed currentskills and future uncertainty.─ See April, 2009, Littler Reporton the ContingentWorkforce, “The Emerging NewWorkforce.”
J-3: The Growing Skill Shortage Robotics/AI and othertechnologies haveaccentuated the existingshortage of skilled techworkers. “By 2015, 60% of the newjobs being created willrequire skills only held by20% of the population.”American Society for Training andDevelopment, Forbes, January 20, 2011
J-3: The Growing Skill Shortage 76% of all U.S. jobs in 2015will require highly skilledworkers primarily inscience, technology, engineering or math. Id. The formal educationdisconnect: Only 1/3 ofcollege graduates havedegrees in science, math, orengineering. Many are notU.S. citizens.
J-3: Immigration Solutions For almost all U.S. employers, globalsolutions will be required to meetthe change of the new economy. The good news is that Congressappears to be responding to theneed for skilled people. A bipartisan bill was identifiedyesterday by the Gang of 8 coveringcomprehensive reform that includesH-1B visas and the STEM program.
J-3: Immigration Solutions“At the crux of the legislationis an effort to bridge the gapbetween Democrats, whostrongly support and areseeking to protect familyimmigration, andRepublicans, who are eagerto move immigration towarda system based on work skillsthat foreigners bring to theUnited States.“New York Times, April 12, 2013, A-18
Immigration Reform:A Framework for Change Senate bipartisan “Gang of 8” Selective Highlights ofProposed Bill (April 16, 2013):─ H-IB Visas to increase from 65,000 to 110,000.─ Can increase in future to 180,000 based on “High Skilled JobsIndex.”─ 25,000 Visas for advanced degrees in TEAM.─ New Fees greater that 30% H-1B’s&L-1’s─ 2014 Maximum 75% of workforceH-1B&L-1’s (60% 2015; 50% 2016)─ “E-Verify mandatory
J-3: Virtual Employment Blending technology with talent, massive resourcesare available through companies such as oDesk andElance. The concept is sourcing talent worldwide andproviding it to organizations normally underindependent contract laws.
J-3: The Story of 3-D Robotics Chris Anderson is the CEO of3-D Robotics, a company thatproduces drones (and received$5 million in funding inNovember, 2012). Anderson was the editor-in-chief of Wired Magazinewith several best-selling books. He sponsored a website, DIY Drones. Through aYouTube video and the website, he discovered JordiMuñoz.
J-3: D Robotics After several “virtual”interactions with Muñoz, heconcluded he was the smartestperson he had met regardingdrone technology and dronepotential. Anderson suggested they form acompany. It was then he learned Muñozwas a nineteen-year-old fromTijuana, Mexico with little formaleducation.
J-3: 3-D Robotics Muñoz ran the business startingas a family operation, graduatingto space in a Tijuanawarehouse, and eventuallyhaving production facilities inboth Mexico and San Diego. Anderson quit his position withWired, and now full-time leads 3-D Robotics with his partnerMuñoz, President of 3-D Robotics.
J-3: 3-D Robotics Takeaway: Drone technologyis developing at a lighteningpace, especially in agriculture. Non-traditional sources oftalent appear to beincreasingly critical in staffingtechnology-basedorganizations. Three-year-olds have a strongmessage to teach the worldabout the new role oftechnology.
J-4: Recruiting Is Changing On February23, 2011, Michael Moffapublished a futuristic thinkpiece entitled, “Dawn of theRobot Recruiter.”ww.recruiter.com Two different workplaceroles.─ First, a robot would take ourjob.─ Second, a robot wouldinterview us for the next job.
J-4: Meet Sophie On April 10, 2013, thehypothetical robot recruiterhad become reality. Sophie and her “human-like” robotsCharles, Malinda, Betty, andJack plus two yet unnamedrobots are the product ofNEC Corporation of Japanand La Trobe UniversityBusiness School inMelbourne, Australia.
J-4: Meet Sophie Sophie is already in trial interviewsfor sales jobs, asking 76 questionsabout selling. She does more than just askquestions, she records emotionalresponses and facial expressions. This “ emotional intelligence” isbenchmarked against theorganization’s best employees. Professor Khosia says this is just thestarting point regarding applicationsand services. The Australian FinancialReview, April 10, 2013 print edition.
J-4: Robot RecruitingMeetsEmployment Law Interviewing has many different legal requirementsand landmines depending upon the country and lawsinvolved. In the U.S., Sophie ensures that the questions can bereviewed in advance to meet legal requirements.OFCCP requirements can be automatically recorded. On the dark side, the emotional intelligencerepresents a potential legal landmine. Theinformation requires testing for disparate impactregarding protected categories.
J-4: Robot RecruitingWe can complain about the dehumanizing of theworkplace and robots out of control, but this is thefuture for both man and machine.
60 Minutes, March of the Machines, January 2013
J-5: PracticalRecommendations1. Become Informed: Make a commitment toeither become informed about robot talentor charge a member of your team to take onthat duty for the recruiting division of yourorganization.2. Industry and Company Assessment:Reach out to other executives anddepartments to determine what is beingplanned or expected in your industry andorganization regarding workplace robotics.
PracticalRecommendations3. Strategic Plan Enhancement: Includeworkplace robotics in your strategic plan forthe organization. How will changes providea new talent resource and/or impact theneed and availabilities to human talent?4. Become Known: Affirmatively engage theCEO and other key managers regardingworkplace robotics and its expected impacton the organization and the existingemployee.
PracticalRecommendations5. In House Training: Review training and re-trainingopportunities and requirements for currentemployees. Explore legal protections that come fromsuch efforts as well as valuable workplace flexibility.Use e-learning when possible.6. Flexible Workforce Expansion: Consider expandingyour contingent and virtual workforce in anticipationof technological change. Review the EmploymentLaw advantages and disadvantages of this change.7. Support Employer Organizations: Empower youremployer associations, including ERE, to participate inthe upcoming regulatory and legislative battles overworkplace robotics.
PracticalRecommendations8. Homework: Become a Member of RoboticsBusiness Review and read at least one of thefollowing treatises: Race Against The Machine (ErikBrynjolfsson & Andrew McAfee, 2011), The Singularity is Near (RayKurzweil, 2005), Abundance: The Future Is Better Than YouThink (Peter Diamandis & StevenKotler, 2012).
Robotics in the Global WorkplaceThe New York Times, August 18, 201261“This is thefuture.”