In what kind of ways will AI affect business? A survey from EmTech Digital conference in 2018 reveals some interesting insights.

How will AI affect the job market as we know it today?

The survey conducted at the conference by MIT Technology Review Insights, shows that:

  • 32% believes that more jobs will be created than lost as AI develops
  • 23% thinks that AI will replace millions of jobs
  • 20% is convinced that AI will create a surge in new jobs

The survey shows that a vast majority believes that AI will create a growth in new jobs and opportunities. So far there is no historical evidence that technological advancement diminishes job opportunities, quite the contrary.

What are the desired business outcomes from the application of AI?

The respondents were asked about their top 3 desires for AI functionality. It gave an interesting overview of the areas where AI will probably affect the most:

  • The most desired outcome was “improve and/or develop new products/services” (54%)
  • The second was “achieve cost efficiencies and/or streamline business operations” (50%)
  • The third was “accelerate decision-making” (49%)

Other desires were such as intelligent automation and enhancing customer experience. What the survey shows, is that the applicability of AI is far-reaching. Examples are duelling neural networks that are being developed to improve products such as medicine, or AI that is able to predict an early onset of depression.

What are the biggest challenges in implementing AI?

They were also asked what they believed to be the biggest obstacles in implementing AI into business. The four biggest difficulties were:

  1. “Skills – lack of requisite talent to drive AI adoption” (80%)
  2. “Business process – the AI insights are not well integrated into current processes (52%)
  3. “Leadership lack of managerial understanding and sponsorship” (48%)
  4. “Data used for AI is not high quality or trusted” (48%)

This shows that there is a huge need for skilled people who can enable and manage the AI adoption into business. It will call for many academic professions from the Humanities, the Social Sciences and the Natural Sciences, because the integration of AI is a multifaceted and complex process involving humans and technology.

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Sources: The Growing Impact of AI on Business.