33 Jobs AI Can’t Do (And How Much Money You Can Make)

For those seeking jobs AI can’t do, heights and electricity shouldn’t be sources of fear.

According to a recent study from the University of Pennsylvania, 33 jobs have been identified as AI-proof, rendering them impervious to automation. These roles entail tasks that artificial intelligence simply cannot replicate.

Topping the list is the role of “Electrical Power-Line Installers and Repairers.”

These intrepid individuals, perched in cherry-pickers, responsible for the maintenance and repair of power lines, enjoy a median annual salary of $78,310, as per data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

It’s a job that, while shielded from automation, carries inherent risks, ranking as the 10th most hazardous profession in 2021, with a staggering fatality rate of 22 deaths per 100,000 workers, according to BLS figures.

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Other high-paying AI-resistant vocations encompass athletes and pile-driver operators. However, this elite group is accompanied by numerous professions offering relatively modest wages, such as bartenders, cafeteria workers, and various manual labor roles.

33 AI-Proof JobsMedian Salary (May 2021)
Electrical Power-Line Installers and Repairers$78,310
Athletes and Sports Competitors$77,300
Pile Driver Operators$76,260
Wellhead Pumpers$63,740
Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators$61,690
Roof Bolters, Mining$59,770
Refractory Materials Repairers, Except Brickmasons$54,250
Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists$48,690
Floor Layers, Except Carpet, Wood, and Hard Tiles$48,060
Cement Masons and Concrete Finishers$47,340
Derrick Operators, Oil and Gas$47,230
Excavating and Loading Machine and Dragline Operators, Surface Mining$46,740
Dredge Operators$46,210
Pourers and Casters, Metal$45,850
Paving, Surfacing, and Tamping Equipment Operators$41,540
Roustabouts, Oil and Gas$38,920
Motorcycle Mechanics$38,170
Automotive Glass Installers and Repairers$37,920
Helpers–Brickmasons, Blockmasons, Stonemasons, and Tile and Marble Setters$37,870
Agricultural Equipment Operators$36,360
Helpers–Pipelayers, Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters$35,720
Foundry Mold and Coremakers$35,590
Helpers–Painters, Paperhangers, Plasterers, and Stucco Masons$33,370
Cutters and Trimmers, Hand$30,230
Meat, Poultry, and Fish Cutters and Trimmers$29,730
Tire Repairers and Changers$29,580
Slaughterers and Meat Packers$29,230
Cooks, Short Order$28,560
GPTs are GPTs: An Early Look at the Labor Market Impact Potential of Large Language Models

As prominent AI models like Chat GPT continually captivate the public with their remarkable and at times eccentric language abilities, tech enterprises are channeling billions into AI ventures.

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Proponents and critics alike anticipate AI’s potential to supplant numerous occupations, or at the very least, enhance workforce efficiency, reducing the demand for human labor.

According to the research from the University of Pennsylvania, some of the most vulnerable roles to AI intrusion are found in the well-paying spheres of finance and software.

The researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, including Tyna Eloundou, Sam Manning, Pamela Mishkin, and Daniel Rock, in collaboration with AI experts, devised a method to assess AI’s probable impact.

They evaluated individual job tasks based on the extent to which AI could expedite them without compromising quality. The researchers even automated certain aspects of their work and enlisted the assistance of an AI program (GPT-4) to do the same, revealing strikingly similar outcomes between humans and AI.

Collectively, the study revealed that 15% of tasks across all professions could be performed more swiftly by AI without any loss of quality. This percentage could surge to a range between 47% and 56% if AI were coupled with specialized software and tools tailored for specific applications.

The researchers emphasized, “These technologies can have pervasive impacts across a wide swath of occupations in the US,” noting that as capabilities continue to advance, the influence of large language model AI on the economy is likely to endure and expand.

  1. Arxiv. “GPTs are GPTs: An Early Look at the Labor Market Impact Potential of Large Language Models”
  2. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Electrical Power-Line Installers and Repairers”
  3. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Civilian occupations with high fatal work injury rates”
  4. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics”

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Hey — It’s Pavlos. Just another human sharing my thoughts on all things money. Nothing more, nothing less.