The real estate services industry is on the cusp of potential disruption by technology, particularly automation, according to the latest study by Australian Computer Society (ACS) and Faethm.
The study said emerging technologies will affect the workforce in the rental, hiring, and real estate services industry. However, roles in this industry are more subject to augmentation rather than automation, with real estate agents being the “most augmentable” role.
The study also said many at-risk professionals have "transferable skills". This means that they can focus on skill and knowledge gaps to transition to new and lower-risk occupations.
"For example, a bookkeeper could transfer to a change analyst, copywriter, or ICT security consultant. A land economist and valuer could transfer to a real estate sales agent, information and organisation professional, or a cyber security analyst," the study said.
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In fact, the study predicts that over the next 15 years, an additional 79,000 jobs could be added to the industry, with a quarter of jobs on the technical side. During this period, however, 37,000 roles might get automated.
Overall, real estate is just one of the industries that will be disrupted by emerging technologies. The study said while around 2.7 million jobs are at risk from automation over the next 15 years, more than twice as many roles could be created if companies invest in its workforce.
In fact, of the 5.6 million roles expected to be created over the next decade and a half, roughly 1.4 million are tech-related jobs.
ACS CEO Andrew Johnson said there is a need for a macro and cross-policy approach from the government to ease the impact of technology on the workforce and to address any skills shortage.
"The outcomes tabled in our report provide deep insights for businesses to inform future workforce development plans, as well as for policymakers to maximise the participation rate of all citizens in the opportunities afforded by the fourth industrial revolution," he said.