In a webinar hosted by the Wisconsin Technology Council, Myers said businesses had expected a shift to more remote jobs, but that they expected it to take 15 years or longer — not two months. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the shift to online workplaces has become a necessity. Myers said that shift has put more of a spotlight on artificial intelligence systems than ever before.

“AI has the potential to automate and streamline jobs that are tedious for businesses,” he said. “Jobs will be transformed.”

He said AI has the capability to do our jobs better than we already do (for example accounting) so businesses can focus attention on other things.

Myers said just because AI is moving to automate many jobs, that didn’t mean there would be a net loss in jobs country-wide. He said instead jobs would provide many of those misplaced by AI with better, likely higher paying occupations.

He feels education is key to helping people understand why AI isn’t the scary computer we see on television, but instead a tool to help move the world forward. Myers said “honest” conversations between experts, educators and businesses would be the next step.

“It’s not a matter of if, but when automation takes over every industry,” he said. “But we shouldn’t be afraid of it. Automation isn’t here to take our jobs, it’s here to transform our jobs into higher-thinking, higher-paid work.”