20 Career Paths That Would No Longer Be Around in the Next Few Years

Artificial intelligence and other new technologies are rapidly changing and making waves in today’s job markets. Slowly but surely, these changes make some jobs or career paths less secure. Unfortunately, many careers will be obsolete sooner rather than later. If you’re curious to know if you’ll be out of a job soon, read on and find the top 20 careers that will soon disappear!

Cashiers

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With the rise of technology and AI, it’s becoming increasingly apparent that easily automatable jobs such as cashier work will undergo significant changes in the coming years. In fact, recently, a new kind of store called Amazon Go made waves across the globe. This store allows shoppers to skip the traditional checkout route of stopping by the cashier if they pay with their Amazon app or a payment method tied to their Amazon account. It scans your total as you place items in your cart, deducts whatever you put back, and automatically charges your card as you walk out of the exit gate with your groceries!

Telemarketers

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People already dislike getting calls from telemarketers, especially if they’re trying to sell them something. So, coupled with the rise of AI-driven chatbots and automated marketing systems, the need for human telemarketers is slowly but surely declining. Aside from this, stricter laws have been implemented regarding telemarketing, so companies are already finding it hard to make these calls legally.

Mail Sorters

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Thanks in part to technology, more and more people are connected through online communication, such as emails, social media, online calls, and more. This thus leads to a decline in the need for mail sorters. In fact, according to Business Insider, the projected decline in the number of people working as postmasters or mail superintendents from 2014 to 2024 is 26.2%.

Proofreaders

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AI has only gotten better over the years, and it will continue to do so. One of the most common careers or jobs that people believe will disappear in years to come because of AI is proofreading. Many AI websites, such as QuillBot, DeepAI, Scribbr, and more, are famous for helping students and workers alike with proofreading. However, Om Proofreading argues, “Proofreaders are still needed for complex, lengthy, or important documents. Proofreading software and AI cannot fully understand the complexities and nuances of language like humans; therefore, they can miss errors and sometimes make erroneous suggestions.”

Data Entry Workers

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Technological advancements and AI could render data entry workers obsolete in the next few years. With machines becoming increasingly capable of performing data input tasks with greater efficiency, the need for human involvement is decreasing. Additionally, businesses are adopting automated software and systems to process and organize data without requiring manual input. For them, the initial purchase of the software may be high, but long-term payments would be much lower compared to paying humans a monthly salary.

Fast Food Workers

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A few years back, seeing automated order and checkout kiosks in our favorite fast-food chains was surprising and exciting. However, they’re becoming increasingly common and are slowly being adopted by brands worldwide. Robots are also becoming increasingly common in restaurants. This makes it easy to imagine how fast-food workers will become increasingly obsolete as the years go on.

Travel Agents

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Before the internet, traveling the world was difficult, and you’ll undoubtedly need travel agents and agencies to help you book your vacations. However, today, aside from access to the internet, there is a vast multitude of options when it comes to AI travel or trip planners. NGG Consult shares, “Travel agents appeal to traditional customers who are afraid of or unaccustomed to digital platforms. These customers are becoming rare, and the majority of customers are technologically sophisticated consumers looking for cheap travel packages.”

Toll Booth Operators

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Toll booth operators may soon disappear due to the widespread adoption of electronic toll collection systems such as RFID technology. Some popular electronic toll collection systems in the US include the Florida SunPass, Georgia PeachPass, North Carolina QuickPass, E-ZPass, and more. These systems allow drivers to pay tolls without stopping, eliminating the need for human operators.

Dispatchers

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Another easily automatable job is dispatching. Dispatchers might not be needed as much in the future because computers and smart systems can do their jobs. Computers can figure out who needs to go where and when without humans having to analyze and send signals or orders.

Taxi Drivers

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If Uber or Lyft isn’t enough of an indication, then self-driving cars might just do the trick! In around 2022, self-driving taxis started ferrying passengers in San Francisco. They’ve expanded to Phoenix and, in 2023, announced that they’ll begin to service other cities like Los Angeles, New York, Austin, Miami, and more.

Administrative Support Employees

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Administrative support entails administrative and logistical help in companies, specifically in appointment settings, office management, and travel arrangements. However, with the rise of AI, these things are becoming increasingly automated, leading to a decline in the need to hire secretaries and assistants. The Conference Board shares, “Across all office and administrative support occupations, there has been a rapid decline in employment—over 2 million jobs lost between 2016 and 2021.”

Bank Tellers

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Online banking has become the go-to or preferred banking method for many people. In fact, there has been an increase in the number of solely digital banks, wherein one doesn’t even need to go to a physical branch to open an account. The top 10 best digital banks in America for 2024 include Wise, Revolut, Curve, Axos, SoFi, Ally, Chime, Varo, Aspiration, and N26.

Translators

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The rise of machine translation technology, such as Google Translate, may render traditional translators obsolete. These systems are becoming increasingly reliable in accurately translating languages without human input. Companies such as Fujitsu Laboratories have also started developing wearable translation devices that people won’t even have to hold! The device that Fujitsu Laboratories created would allow people to wear it on their chests, automatically recognizing pauses in conversations to translate content.

Meter Readers

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As years pass, more and more companies implement the adoption of smart meters or automated meter reading technologies. Because these meters can transmit data on gas, water, or energy usage without manual readings, there’s a high chance that meter reading as a job or career path will soon be obsolete.

Administrative Legal Jobs

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While lawyers cannot be replaced by AI anytime soon, their administrative counterparts or the people who help them sort through documents and more will likely be obsolete. After all, legal administrative jobs and paralegal roles are increasingly being done by automation and digital tools. As automation and digitalization become more advanced, the need for humans in these roles will reduce.

Computer Programmers

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An article from Medium shares, “With the rapid development of artificial intelligence technology, the majority of programming jobs may disappear within 20 years.” However, many argue that though the number of computer programming jobs will dwindle, it won’t completely disappear. After all, how will AI and technology improve further without computer programmers?

Parking Enforcement Workers

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As technology rises, more and more jobs are affected. One of these is parking enforcement, as it’s another easily automatable job, much like cashiers. Electronic parking meters and mobile payment apps are slowly eliminating the need for human officers to issue tickets or collect fees. Plus, new technologies like license plate recognition offer efficient monitoring of parking violations—even without human intervention or involvement.

Machine Assemblers

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Alongside the rise of AI is the rise in robotics. With advanced technology, sophisticated machines can assemble other machines, thus eliminating the need for human work. Many argue that automated assembly lines would be much more efficient and quick when it comes to completing their tasks.

Warehouse Stockers

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Like machine assemblers, warehouse stockers might no longer be needed in the coming years. More and more companies are implementing and adopting automated warehouse systems, robots, and automated guided vehicles that can efficiently move around and organize inventory. With advanced technology, people believe that conveyor systems and robots can handle tasks such as shelving, packing, and picking faster and more accurately than human workers.

Textile Workers

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The demand for goods calls for a speedy and efficient system. Because of this, mass production of items such as clothes and textiles needs technology—not necessarily people—to perform tasks like weaving, sewing, and more with greater speed, efficiency, and precision. Plus, unlike humans, technology can operate continuously without needing breaks or rest, leading to higher productivity and lower labor costs for textile manufacturers.

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Author: Karen Danao

Bio:

Karen is a writer and also a marketing and advertising professional. Beyond the keyboard and the screen, she is someone who’s out to enjoy every bit that life has to offer!

Poetry, philosophy, history, and movies are all topics she loves writing about! However, her true passion is in traveling, photography, and finding common ground to which everyone from different cultures can relate.

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