Special Report

18 Jobs Being Replaced by Robots

Mail Clerks
Source: Thinkstock

9. Mail clerks and mail machine operators, except postal service
> Projected loss 2014-2024: -18.8%
> 2014 jobs: 104,900
> 2024 jobs: 85,100
> Median annual wage: $28,570

Mail clerks can process an estimated 1,200 letters in an hour, the most basic sorting machines can process 2,000 pieces of mail in the same time, with more advanced models sorting up to 50,000 pieces an hour. As mail sorting machine technology improves and becomes less expensive, more companies are replacing their mail clerks with machines. The number of mail clerks and mail machine operators outside of the postal service is projected to fall by 18.8%, or roughly 20,000 workers, over the 10 years ending in 2024.

Computer operators
Source: Thinkstock

8. Computer operators
> Projected loss 2014-2024: -19.0%
> 2014 jobs: 61,100
> 2024 jobs: 49,500
> Median annual wage: $40,420

Computer operators’ primary tasks include monitoring and responding to computer error messages and entering commands at a computer terminal. Like many disappearing jobs, increasingly sophisticated software is reducing the need for workers in the profession. The number of workers in the field is expected to drop to only 49,500 by 2024, a 19% decline over the span of a decade.

Parking Ticket On Car, parking enforcement worker
Source: Thinkstock

7. Parking enforcement workers
> Projected loss 2014-2024: -20.8%
> 2014 jobs: 9,400
> 2024 jobs: 7,400
> Median annual wage: $36,530

There are only 9,400 parking enforcement workers in the United States, fewer than in the vast majority of professions. By 2024, there will be only 7,400 parking enforcement attendants, a 20.8% decline. As is the case with many rapidly disappearing jobs, parking enforcement workers are being replaced by machines and automated systems. Electronic ticketing systems and parking garages with automatic barriers are likely putting a dent in the ranks of parking enforcement workers nationwide.