If you watch the Hollywood film Hidden Figures starring actress Taraji P. Hanson, you’ll find out how the development of computer technology threatened women working as NASA counters in the 1960s.

Although in the movies these women can still be protected. But this directly proves that the development of new technologies can cause many people to lose their jobs or even lose their jobs. Those who leave their jobs due to the development of new technologies are known as structural unemployment.

Definition of Structural Unemployment

According to Will Kenton on the website InvestopediaStructural unemployment is a type of unemployment caused by fundamental change. (fundamental factors) in the national economy This fundamental change could be exacerbated by government policies. technological development and competition

This type of unemployment can occur when workers do not have sufficient skills to find work in their area. Or have a suitable job but the salary offered is low. or is far from that place and unable to move house

Structural unemployment is different from cyclical unemployment. in cyclical unemployment Layoffs occur due to changes in the country’s economic cycle, such as a recession. which can happen in just 18 months for structural unemployment The cause is more fundamental. So it can happen for years.

causes of structural unemployment

1. Technological changes

The first cause of structural unemployment is technological development. As mentioned at the beginning of the article opening above. The development of computers has threatened the existence of female employees at NASA.

Another simple example is that the vehicle gradually It replaces bicycles, rickshaws, buggies and other traditional vehicles. whether they know it or not The existence of these vehicles has forced many rickshaw drivers to close their businesses and switch to motorcycle taxi drivers or other occupations.

2. Government policy

One of the challenges faced by Indonesian workers when ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Fully implemented is a job competition. The agreement between the Indonesian government and its Southeast Asian neighbors is planned to allow for the free flow of labor between countries. This means foreigners can work freely in Indonesia. And Indonesians can work abroad freely as well.

Don’t rule out if foreign workers Offer lower wages or higher skills There will be many Indonesians losing their jobs, even if it’s only temporary.

3. Lifestyle changes

Structural unemployment can be caused by changes in lifestyles and living standards. For example, the living standards of Indonesians today are better than those of the past 3 or 4 decades. according to the publication of world bankOver the past 20 years, most of the poor in Indonesia have moved out of the poverty line.

This increase in living standards has gradually affected the demand for labor. For example, today there are more motorcyclists than cyclists or rickshaw riders. Or now many Indonesians shop online and not go to traditional markets. As a result, many traditional markets have quieted down and traders have to change professions.

Negative effects of structural unemployment

The same is true for other types of unemployment. Structural unemployment can affect people’s financial situation and health, according to The balance money mirror from 2008 financial crisisThe impact from the economic structure changes will be more severe for the older generation or around the age of 55 years.

Caused by 5 things:

  1. People today have a harder time adapting to technology. Let alone Big Data or Machine Learning, your parents might have a few problems using smartphones.
  2. It’s harder to go back to school. In addition to the age issue I often have problems with reduced physical and brain performance as well.
  3. It’s difficult to move house. Therefore, they are reluctant to look for work in new places that require adjustments.
  4. reluctance to receive a lower salary
  5. There is age discrimination in jobs. Of course, it’s not uncommon for job openings to have age restrictions. Because in Indonesia, this is also used.

How to overcome structural unemployment

1. Learn a new skill

It cannot be denied that today’s workforce in Indonesia needs to adapt to the latest technological developments. Learning this new technology has proven to be more or less capable of keeping some people in the same field. similar or different but still like

An example is many radio broadcasters or radio technicians who have diverted or developed themselves as podcasters. Because while technology is old, radio, podcasts, and voice acting all sell audio-based content.

As a result, the skills that have been created and developed in the world of radio can still be retained by becoming the aforementioned professions. The difference lies in the delivery method. While radio is a bit more rigorous than in a studio with all SOPs, being a podcaster you only need a laptop and mobile phone. What you need to do is how to fix it.

2. Provide a platform to learn new skills

If an individual’s job to avoid structural unemployment is to learn new skills Now it is the job of governments and private companies to provide a platform or infrastructure to learn these new skills. This is because these skills are not taught at all schools or universities. It is therefore no surprise that there are now many educational technology startups developing in Indonesia.

meanwhile The government can provide scholarships to selected students by working with the above education startups. Like any other existing course institute, the hope is to attend the course. Indonesian workers are more adaptable to keep up with the times.

3. Helping the unemployed elderly

as mentioned above Unemployment due to changes in the economic structure quite affects aging workers quite a lot. For people who have worked for decades and/or are breadwinners. Suddenly losing your job is certainly not easy.

This is where the government can take part in two things: helping them mentally and giving these elderly workers an opportunity to set up their own businesses, such as providing funding and helping to train catfish, raise chickens, open a catering business. or other tasks that can be done at home

Although their income or confidence will not return much. But at least it made them so busy that they forgot for a moment that they lost their jobs.

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