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According to a study by the Institute for Employment Research (IAB) , the industrial transition since the 1970s has had no negative impact on the German labor market: technological progress through automation and computerization has created as many new jobs as it has made superfluous. However, this transition has in particular led to an increase in demand for better qualified personnel, while demand for low-skilled workers has fallen significantly.

Applying their findings to the current digital industrial revolution debate, the researchers assume that employment levels will remain stable. Nevertheless, they expect radical structural changes for which companies need to be prepared: a further increase in the level of requirements for existing personnel will be accompanied by new demands relating to the training, guidance, and placement of employees. One possibility for forward-looking employers to prepare for the impending changes in advance is to provide job-related continuing training for existing staff.