The year 2024 brings with it a significant surge in employer demand for AI skills, as revealed by the latest “Job Skills of 2024 Report.” This report, based on insights from five million learners across 3,000 businesses, 3,600 higher education institutions, and governments in over 100 countries, highlights the ever-growing importance of artificial intelligence in the job market. With a 271% year-over-year (YoY) increase in employee interest in AI skills and a 157% YoY rise in generative AI course enrollments, the demand for these capabilities is undeniably on the rise.
Generative AI takes center stage
Generative AI has emerged as a prominent player in the skills landscape, exerting a substantial influence throughout 2023 and continuing its ascent in 2024. The report shows a remarkable 271% YoY increase in searches for terms like ‘AI,’ ‘ChatGPT,’ and ‘generative AI’ by enterprise learners. This surge in interest indicates the growing recognition of the potential and impact of generative AI across various sectors.
Within the realm of artificial intelligence, Reinforcement Learning stands out as the fastest-growing skill, experiencing rapid growth both overall and across diverse verticals. Government-affiliated learners, in particular, have shown an accelerated interest in this field, reflecting its importance in shaping the future of AI.
Cybersecurity and audit skills in high demand
Amid an estimated shortfall of over 3.4 million cybersecurity professionals, the report underscores the critical role of cybersecurity skills in the tech domain. In fact, cybersecurity skills occupy half of the top ten fastest-growing tech skills. This emphasis on cybersecurity reflects the urgent need to safeguard data and systems in an increasingly digital world.
Furthermore, audit skills have emerged as the ninth fastest-growing skill overall and the sixth top business skill. This trend highlights a growing focus on implementing regulatory frameworks, protecting data, and safely deploying advanced technologies like AI.
As technology and consumer behavior evolve, seven out of the ten fastest-growing skills overall are business-related. Digital marketing skills dominate this category, comprising half of the top ten fastest-growing business skills. E-commerce, media strategy & planning, and search engine optimization emerge as the top three in this category, underscoring the significance of these skills in the ever-changing business landscape.
Leadership skills in high demand
In a world shaped by emerging technologies like AI and characterized by macroeconomic disruptions, leadership skills have become increasingly sought after. These include people management, negotiation, influencing, and employee relations, all of which rank among the top five fastest-growing leadership skills. These skills are crucial for organizations seeking to navigate change and innovation successfully.
Moreover, Foucaud highlighted the significance of cybersecurity and audit skills, stressing their vital role in safeguarding data and ensuring compliance, especially in an era of rapid technological change.
As the “Job Skills of 2024 Report” reveals, the landscape of skills demanded by employers is shifting dynamically. AI skills, led by generative AI and Reinforcement Learning, are experiencing remarkable growth. The urgent need for cybersecurity professionals and the increasing focus on audit skills highlight the critical importance of data protection and regulatory compliance. Business skills, especially in digital marketing, remain in high demand, reflecting the evolving nature of technology and consumer behavior. Finally, leadership skills have taken on new prominence as organizations seek individuals capable of steering them through the ever-changing landscape of technology and business.
In light of these developments, individuals and institutions alike must identify and invest in the right skills to ensure career success and contribute to the sustainable growth of businesses and governments in 2024 and beyond. The world is evolving, and staying ahead requires adapting to the demands of the future job market.