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C-Suite: Organizations Would Benefit From AI, Trust Remains A Concern

Survey Finds Business leaders are optimistic about the potential impact of AI and ML, despite concerns about trust and data accessibility. 

Business leaders across the globe are optimistic about the potential impact of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning despite concerns about trust and data accessibility, finds a new survey from Workday, Inc. The C-Suite Global AI Indicator Report — based on insights from 2,355 business leaders from North America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia-Pacific and Japan  — examines how these capabilities will impact how the future works.  

AI, Machine learning
(Credit: Adobe Stock / ipopba)

Key findings include:

  • 98% of CEOs said there would be some immediate business benefit from implementing these capabilities. 
  • 47% of all business leaders believe Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning will significantly amplify human potential.
  • 43% of all business leaders are concerned about the trustworthiness of AI and ML.
  • 59% of respondents said their organizations’ data is somewhat or completely siloed.
  • Only 4% of all respondents said their data is fully accessible.

“Despite some uncertainty, leaders are optimistic that AI and ML will augment their workforce and drive productivity,” said Jim Stratton, chief technology officer, Workday. “Trust is paramount to embracing these benefits, and building trust requires the right data foundation and commitment to governance. By implementing trustworthy solutions that prioritize data quality and transparency, companies can reap the rewards of AI and ML across their organization.”

CEOs and other business leaders know that Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning will impact their organizations, but some have been hesitant to fully embrace the technology. 71% said the global business landscape will be affected in the next three years, and 64% believe their organization as a whole will be affected by AI and ML in the next three years. 

Nearly all (98%) CEOs surveyed said there would be some immediate business benefit from implementing AI and ML, with the top benefits being increased productivity, data-driven decision-making, and improved collaboration. Despite this, 49% of CEOs said their organization is unprepared to adopt AI and ML as they lack some or all the tools, skills, and knowledge necessary to embrace these technologies, and 28% of CEOs want to wait to see how AI and ML affect their organization before they decide on their approach.

Despite Uncertainty, Leaders are Optimistic 

Among CEOs, 30% are concerned that employees will struggle to keep up with rapid changes as Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning become more integrated into their organization. In addition, 32% of HR leaders and 30% of finance leaders worry their teams will not have the technical skills they need to work effectively with AI and ML. 

While leaders have concerns about the immediate effect AI and ML adoption will have on employees, they are ultimately optimistic about the overall impact. 47% of business leaders believe AI and ML will significantly amplify human potential, and 45% of CEOs believe AI and ML will create a more equitable and diverse workforce. 39% of CEOs believe increased productivity is the biggest potential benefit they see coming from AI, reinforcing the critical connection between technology and human potential. 

So, What’s Holding Them Back?

Uncertainty about data and privacy, and a lack of trust are holding CEOs and other business leaders back from fully embracing and adopting Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning: 43% of all leaders surveyed said they were concerned about the trustworthiness of AI and ML, with 67% of CEOs citing potential errors as a top risk of AI and ML integration, reinforcing that lack of trust. 

Increased transparency is needed to build trust, but siloed data is obscuring leaders’ ability to lean in: 59% of organizations surveyed reported that their data is somewhat or completely siloed. Only 4% of all respondents said their data is fully accessible. 

Click here to download the report, C-Suite Global AI Indicator Report: AI Is the Ultimate Level-Up. 

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