Tag Archives: employment

Video: Robotics Aid Warehouse Workers

11 Aug

A lot has been written and discussed about the negative impact of robotics on employment. So is there also any good news about robotics and the job market? The answer is yes!

Here is an example, as reported by Jennifer Smith for the Wall Street Journal:

“In the battle of humans versus machines on the warehouse floor, some firms have found common ground. Instead of developing technology to completely replace manpower, these firms are designing robots meant to work alongside people. These robots, for example, can guide workers to items to be picked or can transport goods across a warehouse to be packed and shipped. Deutsche Post AG’s DHL is testing ‘swarming’ robots at a facility in Memphis, Tenn. These machines help workers pick out medical devices that need to be shipped quickly. Quiet Logistics Inc., which fulfills online orders for retailers like Bonobos and Inditex SA’s Zara, uses the same type of mobile robots in one of its warehouses.”

“Known as ‘collaborative’ robots, they are small and relatively cheap — costing tens of thousands of dollars — compared with miles of conveyor belts and automation systems that run into the tens of millions. The new robots are designed with the majority of warehouses world-wide in mind, where orders continue to be fulfilled manually by people pushing carts up and down aisles.”


(Video from Business Insider)

Which Business Jobs Have the Best and Worst Job Security?

15 Feb

24/7 Wall St. recently compiled a list of the jobs having the best and worst job security. It used unemployment rates and median wages as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

These are a few of the business-related jobs rated as BEST:

  • Database administrators — Unemployment rate: 1.0%; labor force: 94,000; median annual wage: $80,280
  • Public relations specialists — Unemployment rate: 1.1%; labor force: 149,000; median annual wage: $55,680
  • Medical and health services managers –Unemployment rate: 1.2%; labor force: 644,000; median annual wage: $92,810

These are a few of the business-related jobs rated as WORST:

  • Telemarketers — Unemployment rate: 22.1%; labor force: 77,000; median annual wage: $22,740
  • Tax preparers [NOT accountants or CPAs!!] — unemployment rate: 12.7%; labor force: 125,000; median annual wage: $35,990
  • Door-to-door sales workers and news and street vendors — Unemployment rate: 9.2%; labor force: 172,000; median annual wage: $21,530

Click the image to read more.


Why Aren’t Wages Rising Faster?

4 Mar

Positive performance of the Gross Domestic Product? Check. Unemployment rate still dropping? Check. Energy prices down from last year? Check. (Despite some recent price increases). So, why haven’t U.S. wages risen faster and higher than they have?

Are wages finally ready to have a meaningful uptick? According to Knowledge@Wharton:

“An early spring looks in store for workers with unexpected good news from the U.S. Labor Department: In January, unemployment clocked in at 5.7%, down from a post-financial crisis high of 10% in October 2009. Over the last three months, employers hired at the fastest pace since 1997. Another positive sign: After years of stagnant wage growth, average hourly earnings rose by 0.5%, the biggest gain in six years.”

“Though small, this uptick in wage growth raises the question of whether economic recovery might finally bring higher pay along with it. In February, Wal-Mart Stores announced a pay raise for its U.S. workers to $10 an hour, above the $7.25 an hour federal minimum wage, and other companies, such as Starbucks, Panera Bread, and Aetna have also raised wages at the lower rungs. That’s good news, when average real wage growth has hovered around zero among developed countries since the end of the financial crisis, according to a 2014 report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the International Labor Organization and the World Bank Group. G-20 countries overall have averaged only 1% to 2% real wage growth a year, most due to wage increases in China, according to the report.”

“Workers should remain skeptical of any dramatic change afoot on the wage front, however. The economic recovery taking hold at least in the U.S., if not in other major developed economies, may enable workers to claw back jobs, but dramatically higher pay is a much more tenuous prospect. The availability of still more U.S. workers on the sidelines ready for hire, along with an eager supply outside the U.S., continued displacement of workers via technology, and weaker worker protections in the law will allow employers to hold the upper hand for some time to come, experts say.”

Click the image to read more.


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