Rapid technological progress and widespread automation have made the labour market more challenging and competitive but people analytics company Gooroo Ventures (ASX: GOO) believes it has a viable solution.
Earlier today, the company announced a new global learning platform in collaboration with Microsoft that helps prepare individuals for the future of work.
Gooroo is set to launch Gooroo Learn on Open edX, delivering a curated selection of courses and development pathways for the technical skills most in demand. The objective is to get talent job-ready while providing individuals with the opportunity to stand out from the pack with a coveted Microsoft certification.
Gooroo and Microsoft have agreed to collaborate and intend to “better equip” new graduates facing a fiercely competitive labour market that currently has 5 million unemployed and a further 1 million active job seekers in Australia.
In other countries, new graduates face even steeper challenges after completing university with countries such as the UK and the US facing unemployment rates that dwarf those in Australia.
“This is an exciting opportunity to further our partnership with Gooroo, a pioneer in analytics and job matching capabilities. Together with Microsoft’s courses, learning path and credentials, this will help better equip students entering the workforce,” said Avik Choudhury, Microsoft’s regional sales director for Asia, MEA and France.
Australia’s rapidly evolving labour market has spurred the country’s policymakers into action with last year’s launch of an official enquiry into the “Future of Work and Workers” to be conducted by a Senate Select Committee.
One of the key facets of the inquiry is to gauge the impact of technological change on the future of work and workers in Australia. Other submissions to the enquiry have called for a “national upskilling agenda” and greater access for small businesses seeking education and training including investment in digital education.
According to industry research, the labour supply and wages are being squeezed as employers become increasingly cost conscious and focus on technological substitution and artificial intelligence that distort previous supply and demand models.
Research findings indicate that technological change, disruptive enterprises, increasing turbulence and uncertainty are creating a sense of anxiety amongst half the total range of occupations.
Gooroo wants to empower workers to find better quality jobs and help improve Australia’s labour market with the advent of a proprietary set of solutions aimed at helping both workers and companies achieve a better fit and improve how the labour market functions.
Its products marry artificial intelligence with neuroscience to enable individuals, organisations and societies to make better decisions.
The implementation of modern technology has removed the need for many jobs altogether and made it possible for businesses to expand their production lines with automated processes rather than larger workforces.
The impact of mechanisation on modern society has been positive economically and financially from a corporate bottom-line perspective, but less tangibly, mechanisation has led to unwanted social effects including higher anxiety and potentially helped to worsen health among a growing portion of the workforce that feels “left behind”.
Several senior Gooroo representatives including CEO Greg Muller and chief scientific advisor Dr Collin Benjamin appeared before the Senate Committee last month to provide the company’s take on the ongoing impacts on Australia’s workforce.
Gooroo said that there exists a strong case for a new approach to tackle the growing issue of feeling left behind by technological progress, and that there is a clear link between self-esteem, feeling left behind and chronic diseases (such as obesity, heart disease and mental illnesses), which are predicted to get worse over the foreseeable future – unless a clear “integrated health, education and employment strategy” policy is implemented within weeks rather than decades.
For the time being, the Senate’s Select Committee has said it will respond with its report on 15 August 2018.
Gooroo recommended the extension of a successful pilot using its ColourGrid technology in Geelong to a broader regional trial in the Barwon region. Gooroo has also said that it is “now forming partnerships” in readiness for this prospective trial.
Gooroo acquired ColourGrid in June 2016, a platform based on neuroscience that is used to evaluate an individual’s mindset, work styles, contribution and alignment to a company and team.
The potential of linking neuroscience with artificial intelligence underpinned by machine learning and data sciences could facilitate a more meaningful match between individuals and employees, and thereby create a strong commercial opportunity for Gooroo to support Australia’s labour market.
Ironically, as people face increasing requirements for higher levels of technological thinking, it could be AI-powered technology that helps to reintegrate people back into work that’s being threatened by advanced automation.
Gooroo has also developed a software-as-a-service people analytics platform already being used by employers, consultancies and recruiters. The platform delivers effective and integrated approach to organisational design, workforce planning, succession planning, talent development and recruitment.
Gooroo is getting some commercial traction for its people analytics platform courtesy of a deal with KPMG signed last month.
“We all know that technology is a core driver of the changing nature of work. We are very proud to be extending our partnership with Microsoft to provide graduates and transitioning workers the opportunity to feel supported and build a successful technology career that aligns with their passions and mindset,” said Greg Muller, founder and CEO of Gooroo Ventures.