One of the recently minted Jobs and Skills Councils (JSCs) – Future Skills – has developed a paper entitled ‘Building an AI-Empowered Workforce: Priority Framework.’ There is also a couple of associated resources: the report itself and a webinar. They can be accessed here.

What is generative AI? It includes things like machine learning, but more recently Chat GPT is a prominent example of this use of AI. Concerns about it include costs, privacy and security of data, trust in its accuracy and the skill levels of those who are or are wanting to use it.

Another and earlier summary report from Mandala Partners (who did the work for Future Skills) examines how Australia’s workforce will be prepared for generative AI. In it they argue that generative AI will transform the workplace for 7.2 million Australian workers by creating opportunities for productivity gains and these workers will need to re-skill and adapt to the potential opportunity that generative AI presents. In addition, they suggest that service-related industries are most likely to be influenced by generative AI – these industries are typically larger sources of employment. (You can access the full report here)

However, the recent report for Future Skills argues that “generative AI will have a significant impact on the industries, occupations and qualifications that are covered by Future Skills: finance, technology and business. (And we believe the same will be true for the occupational areas covered by a number of other JSCs as well.) In judging impact Future Skills is looking at two indices: Qualification exposure to generative AI and qualification importance (judged by enrolments, occupational impact and government priorities). “The combination of these two factors will identify the most urgent qualifications to be reviewed for potential changes to respond to generative AI.”

Using this framework Future Skills has identified 4 qualifications as having a critical priority, while a further 27 are of high priority. Others are of medium or lower priority. The 4 critical ones are all at Diploma or Advanced Diploma level:

  • Diploma of Marketing and Communication
  • Advanced Diploma of Marketing and Communication
  • Advanced Diploma of Conveyancing, and
  • Diploma of Insurance Broking.

These seem to fit into the sorts of occupational areas that will either be enhanced or disrupted by generative AI.

While the report provides a background, maybe the more useful thing to watch is the associated webinar. The YouTube presentation should also link you to a range of other resources and clips around generative AI.

And finally,

Another view on this work by Future Skills, a piece of work by Tim Dodd and entitled ‘Artificial intelligence is poised to transform vocational education’ looks over the same ground. You can find it here in an article in the Weekend Australian published on 11 June last.