The relative success of pandemic-era working from home could result in as many as 6m white-collar jobs being moved overseas, Tony Blair’s think-tank has warned this morning.
The last year has loosened the geographical ties of work, argues a new report from the think-tank, that makes it possible “anywhere jobs” could be done overseas.
The new report suggests that whilst previous offshoring has been predominantly focussed on blue collar roles like manufacturing, the “mass experiment with remote work” suggests professional, white-collar roles will no longer be “sheltered from the pressures of globalisation.”
Examples of “anywhere jobs” include software programmers, accountants and insurance underwriters.
Many of the jobs at risk are based in London and the south-east.
“The potential transformation in workforces could be as profound as that seen in manufacturing over the past 40 years,” reads the report, “but with a potential timeframe of the next 5-10 years.”
The report does suggest that the moving of jobs overseas to cheaper but equally skilled workers is not inevitable if the UK invests in the future of work, including skills training and better digital infrastructure.
In a foreword to the report, Tony Blair said: “The world is changing fast and all countries must adapt and prepare to preserve and enhance prosperity.”