AI could replace 30% of IBM’s workforce within 5 years


IBM reportedly plans to initiate a hiring freeze, and instead focus on AI developments. The company’s CEO plans for AI to replace an estimated 7800 jobs over the course of five years.

Tech company IBM has initiated a hiring freeze, instead focusing its eyes on AI development. The hiring freeze comes straight from the top, as CEO Arvind Krishna plans to have AI replace 30% of jobs with AI over the next five years.

Krishna’s hiring freeze is going to affect nearly 8000 jobs, with the plan to remove humans from the equation for jobs that can be easily automated. This includes things like back office or HR jobs. IBM recently cut 5000 jobs and plans to cut a further 7000 from its workforce.

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According to the Bloomberg report, Krishna wants to eliminate people from jobs like moving employees between departments or verifying letters. However, the CEO didn’t expect IBM to begin using AI for evaluating employees in the future.

For the most part, Krishna appears to be wanting to replace menial labor jobs, in an effort to save money in the ongoing face of inflation and worldwide recessions. However, the plans that the CEO has laid out in the interview would be the largest from the tech industry so far.

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IBM’s AI plans are following the wider industry’s trajectory

Blue abstract image of a neural networkStable Diffusion

AI has exploded over the last few months, with the arms race being more around the software at the moment. However, as the advancements continue forward, concerns have been raised across the board.

It even caused Elon Musk and a few other tech luminaries to write a letter asking for a pause in the development while regulations are sorted. More recently, the Writers Guild of America has used AI as one of the core reasons for going on strike, with writers fearing being replaced.

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A leading AI developer at Google has also resigned with “regrets” over his life’s work.

Google, OpenAI, and Microsoft continue to plow forward with their collective plans for AI, with GPT-4 now being featured in the Office Suite.