Artificial intelligence could replace 7,800 jobs at the technology giant, International Business Machines Corporation (IBM), according to its chief executive.
Arvind Krishna told Bloomberg News on Monday that the company expected to pause hiring for non-customer facing roles, such as human resources.
“I could easily see 30 per cent of that getting replaced by AI and automation over a five-year period,” Krishna told the outlet, of the company’s 26,000 non-consumer facing roles.
IBM said there is “no blanket hiring ‘pause’ in place.”
“IBM is being deliberate and thoughtful in our hiring with a focus on revenue-generating roles, and we’re being very selective when filling jobs that don’t directly touch our clients or technology. We are actively hiring for thousands of positions right now,” the company added.
The chief executive’s comments come amid growing concerns in the industry that AI could overhaul the job market, by helping workers fob off remedial tasks to computers to free up time.
Some 44 per cent of C-suite executives think AI could perform tasks to a similar or better quality than humans, according to a recent YouGov poll of more than 1,000 business decisionmakers.
The technology is already being used in industries such as the legal sector to save paralegals time on administrative tasks.
Three quarters of over 800 companies surveyed by the World Economic Forum for its Future of Jobs report plan on adopting technologies including cloud computing and AI within the next five years.
42 per cent of business tasks would be automated by 2027, respondents said.
Neither Krishna nor IBM have confirmed when the expected move could start to take place.