IBM pauses hiring push in favor of using AI

IBM office logo
(Image credit: IBM)

An alarming new report has claimed as many as 7,800 IBM roles that would otherwise be open to new talent look to be on hold as the company considers leaning heavily on Artificial Intelligence (AI).

For many of us, this signifies the realization of our biggest fear and one of the greatest threats we might have faced in decades.

The news comes from IBM CEO Arvind Krishna, who discussed the company's plans, which would likely roll out over the coming years, with Bloomberg.


AI and automation look to challenge around one-third (30%) of non-customer-facing roles, and most specifically, back-office positions like HR, in the coming five years.

It’s unclear what plans Krishna has for the future of the company’s workforce, but with over two-thirds of affected workers still likely to retain their jobs as per the most recent suggestions by the CEO, it’s likely that AI will take more of a supporting role in boosting worker productivity, rather than an entire robot takeover.

Still, for many, this unwelcome news is yet another cause for concern and uncertainty following a challenging year of layoffs due to a struggling economy.

TechRadar Pro asked IBM for its thoughts on the potential devastation that could face thousands of families over the coming years. The company's response reads:

"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."

IBM isn’t the only company blaming artificial intelligence for having to make more workers’ roles redundant. Dropbox announced recently that it, too, would lay off hundreds of workers, but for a rather different reason. For now, at least, the company is looking to attract talent that has specialized AI skills, leaving workers that don’t fit the bill trawling through job sites.

With several years’ experience freelancing in tech and automotive circles, Craig’s specific interests lie in technology that is designed to better our lives, including AI and ML, productivity aids, and smart fitness. He is also passionate about cars and the decarbonisation of personal transportation. As an avid bargain-hunter, you can be sure that any deal Craig finds is top value!