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Almost 50% of Wisconsin jobs could become automated

STEVENS POINT (WAOW) — A study from Brookings found that a quarter of Americans could see job disruption due to automation. Midwestern states are some of the most exposed to automation, and the Badger State could see up to 48% of jobs automated in the future.

The report says the likelihood for automation is due to a few variables including educational attainment, industrial composition and community types. Manufacturing, agriculture, retail and food services are some of the fields most likely to be impacted by automation.

David Marten, the Vice President of Marten Machining, said that automation doesn’t necessarily mean less jobs for people.

“The neat thing about automation is that it actually creates more jobs at our place,” Marten said.

And automation can help them free up workers to take on other tasks.

“We just bought an automated bandsaw,” he said. “While that automated bandsaw is cutting material, those people are able to do things that take decision making skills.”

On Monday, Marten Machining broke ground on a new facility in Stevens Point. They said the facility will allow them to double their workforce.

The Mayor of Stevens Point said he recognizes a need for automation in some areas, but believes there will continue to be jobs available to people.

“You are never going to lose that need for human contact, the human interaction,” Mayor Mike Wiza said.

The report from Brookings suggests that there will be a need to strengthen K-12 curriculum in skills like computer science, coding and statistics in order to keep with with an evolving job landscape.

Sarah McGrew

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