The Future of Work: The Disappearance of Repetitive Jobs Due to AI and Robotics

Technological advancements are transforming the labor market, particularly in sectors where repetitive tasks are prevalent. Automation, powered by AI and robotics, is reshaping industries by improving efficiency, reducing costs, and eliminating human error. 

Technological Advancements

AI and Machine Learning

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) have made significant strides in processing large datasets and performing complex tasks. These technologies enable machines to learn from experience, making them ideal for tasks requiring repetitive decision-making processes.


Advancements in robotics have led to the development of sophisticated machines capable of performing repetitive physical tasks with precision and speed. From manufacturing to service industries, robots are increasingly taking on roles traditionally held by humans.

Impact on Repetitive Jobs


The manufacturing sector is a prime example of how automation is replacing repetitive jobs. According to the International Federation of Robotics (IFR), the global stock of operational industrial robots increased by 13% to 3 million units in 2020 . In automotive manufacturing, robots perform tasks such as welding, painting, and assembly with higher efficiency and consistency than human workers.

Retail and Service Industries

In retail, automated checkout systems and self-service kiosks reduce the need for cashiers. Companies like Amazon are pioneering cashier-less stores, such as Amazon Go, where AI and sensor technology track purchases and automatically charge customers .

In the service industry, robotic process automation (RPA) is used to handle tasks such as data entry, billing, and customer service inquiries. For instance, UiPath, a leading RPA company, has reported that their software robots can complete repetitive tasks 20 times faster than humans .

Statistics and Real Examples

Employment Trends

According to a report by McKinsey Global Institute, up to 800 million jobs worldwide could be displaced by automation by 2030 . The report highlights that 60% of all occupations have at least 30% of activities that are technically automatable.

Case Study: Foxconn

Foxconn, a major supplier for Apple, replaced 60,000 factory workers with robots in a single factory in 2016 . This move significantly reduced labor costs and increased production efficiency, setting a precedent for other manufacturers.

Case Study: Walmart

Walmart is integrating robots for tasks such as floor cleaning and shelf scanning. The company has deployed over 1,500 autonomous floor-cleaning robots across its stores in the U.S. . These robots perform repetitive cleaning tasks, allowing employees to focus on customer service and other value-added activities.

Socio-Economic Implications

Job Displacement and Reskilling

The displacement of repetitive jobs poses significant challenges, including unemployment and the need for reskilling. Governments and organizations must invest in training programs to equip workers with skills relevant to the digital economy. For example, Amazon has committed $700 million to retrain 100,000 employees for higher-skilled roles by 2025 .

Economic Benefits

Automation can lead to economic growth by increasing productivity and reducing costs. A study by PwC estimates that AI and robotics could contribute up to $15.7 trillion to the global economy by 2030 . Companies that adopt these technologies can gain a competitive edge and drive innovation in their industries.


  1. International Federation of Robotics. (2020). World Robotics Report 2020.
  2. Amazon. (n.d.). Amazon Go and the Cashier-less Shopping Experience.
  3. UiPath. (n.d.). Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Overview.
  4. McKinsey Global Institute. (2017). Jobs Lost, Jobs Gained: Workforce Transitions in a Time of Automation.
  5. BBC News. (2016). Foxconn replaces ‘60,000 factory workers with robots’.
  6. Walmart. (2019). Walmart Brings Autonomous Floor-Cleaning Robots to U.S. Stores.
  7. Amazon. (2019). Amazon to Upskill 100,000 U.S. Employees for In-Demand Jobs by 2025.
  8. PwC. (2017). Sizing the prize: What’s the real value of AI for your business and how can you capitalise?

The replacement of repetitive human jobs with AI and robotics is an inevitable outcome of technological progress. While this shift presents challenges, it also offers opportunities for economic growth and job creation in new sectors. To navigate this transition, it is crucial to invest in reskilling programs and embrace the potential of these technologies to enhance productivity and innovation.