3 reasons you’ll need human-centric skills for the future

While AI is becoming more prevalent, machines simply can't replicate the human touch.


Sure, some are learning code to create the AI. And others are developing advances in automation. But the wisest are honing their human-centric skills. After all, these are the qualities that futurists have revealed will be in-demand during the next industrial era.

What are human-centric skills?

Sometimes known as soft-skills, human-centric skills include empathy, communication, storytelling, emotional intelligence, creativity, having a growth mindset—the list goes on.

So, why will we need these skills in the future?

1. Bots will take care of the mundane

We’ve all experienced elements of our lives becoming automated—think self-serve check-outs and face-recognition at passport control. What these automations have in common is that they take care of life’s more mundane tasks.

As tech progresses, this will continue, which is great news in many ways. But it does mean that the human workers who once completed these tasks will need to find new jobs. Or moreover, find new skills that the robots can’t perform, making them employable once again.

According to The Definitive Guide to Thriving in the Future of Work, developed by Open Universities Australia, skilled human workers are set to be in shortage of around 1.5 million by 2022. Those who are well prepared will hone their human-centric skills to fill these positions.

2. Emotional intelligence never goes out of date

Ever conquered a digital platform just as the software has gone out of date? It’s a frustrating feeling.

As technology continues to double in capacity every 18 months, the rate of software upgrades is only going to get faster. While technical skills for using software will continue to be important, the soft skills that enable you to move seamlessly between new tech platforms will become paramount. Being open to change, flexible in your approach, and willing to communicate challenges will empower you to learn and conquer the latest tech time and time again.

3. Soft skills will boost business growth

A recent report by global management consultancy Boston Consulting Group (BCG) revealed that human-centric skill development can boost GDP growth by up to 2%. Technology skill gaps create a loss in revenue for many businesses. But by empowering employees to build soft skills–the very skills that allow you to move seamlessly across roles and industries–businesses can experience growth instead.

In fact, OUA's Definitive Guide reveals that businesses that invest in training their staff in soft skills can see a return on investment of 250% in only eight months.

With the world abuzz with the power of human-centric skills, those less acquainted with the right side of their brains may feel concerned. But there’s no need to be. You don’t need to be born with high emotional intelligence to master soft skills.

In fact, online learning is an ideal avenue to hone these skills at any stage of life. Through Open Universities Australia, reshaping your skills for the future of work is much more achievable than you think. Explore hundreds of online subjects and degrees from leading Australian universities now.

Keen to learn more about the future of work? The Definitive Guide to Thriving in the Future of Work is the report every career-conscious Australian needs.

Browse  thousands of courses from leading Australian universities.

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