Are you being replaced by robots?

Professionals in the financial services industry may be in danger of a robot take-over. What's so much better about computerisation and is your job at risk?

Professionals in the financial services industry may be in danger of a robot take-over, according to a study carried out by Oxford University researchers.

The report, titled “The Future of Employment: How susceptible are jobs to computerisation,” singled out a number of careers doomed to become de-humanised, including a few in the  financial services sector.

Authors Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael A. Osborne say that even occupations that require subtle judgement are susceptible to computerisation. To many such tasks, the “unbiased decision making” of an algorithm is an advantage over human operators.

In the financial sector, automated decision-making has played a role for quite some time. A.I algorithms are able to process a greater number of financial announcements, press releases, and other information than any human trader, and then act faster upon them. Some services, like Future Advisor in the US, use A.I to offer ‘personalised’ financial advice at larger scale and lower cost.

However, the role of the personal financial advisor is still reasonably safe, about half way down the list of 702 jobs analysed.

The researchers didn’t look so kindly on other insurance professionals. Insurance underwriters and Insurance claims and policy processing clerks were in the top 20 jobs at risk. Insurance sales agents were in at number 137.

Here are the top 20 at-risk jobs of an iRobot take-over:

1. Telemarketers

2. Title examiners, abstractors and searchers

3. Hand sewers

4. Mathematical technicians

5. Insurance underwriters

6. Watch repairers

7. Cargo and freight agents

8. Tax preparers

9. Photographic process workers and processing machine operators

10. New Accounts clerks

11. Library technicians

12. Data entry keyers

13. Timing device assemblers and adjusters

14. Insurance claims and policy processing clerks

15. Brokerage clerks

16. Order clerks

17. Loan officers

18. Insurance appraisers (auto damage)

19. Umpires, referees and other sports officials

20. Tellers