Businesses Struggle to Embrace AI Despite Optimistic Outlook, Survey Reveals

NNicholas March 6, 2024 7:02 AM

Although Artificial Intelligence (AI) continues to be a buzzword in corporate circles, businesses are struggling to adopt it, according to a global survey. Issues such as data privacy, regulation, and inadequate IT infrastructure are major roadblocks. However, despite the challenges, leaders remain optimistic about AI's potential.

AI Adoption Hindered by Multiple Challenges

Despite the hype surrounding generative AI, businesses are still struggling to fully adopt this technology. A global survey conducted by MIT Technology Review Insights and Australia-based telecom company Telstra has shown that the adoption rate is not meeting the expectations. Out of more than 300 business leaders surveyed, only 9% were significantly using AI. Several roadblocks have been identified, with data privacy, regulation, and IT infrastructure topping the list. While businesses understand the potential benefits of AI, these challenges are making widespread adoption difficult.

Business Leaders Stay Optimistic About AI

Despite the barriers, business leaders remain optimistic about the potential of AI. The survey showed that leaders believe in the transformative power of AI and expect to broaden its application within their organizations in the near future. However, the current adoption rates suggest that businesses are still in the early stages of AI integration, with most of the early adopters utilizing AI only within limited business areas.

Key Areas Need Improvement for AI Adoption

For effective AI adoption, businesses may need to make significant improvements in various areas. These include data quality and capability, privacy measures, AI skilling and safe, responsible AI governance across the organization. Addressing these areas can help businesses overcome the current barriers to AI adoption and leverage the technology more effectively.

Currently, early adopters of AI are primarily using the technology to automate repetitive, low-value tasks. However, businesses expect the use of generative AI to more than double by 2024. The potential uses of AI are vast, and businesses are hopeful that the technology can be leveraged more effectively in the future for a greater number of functions.

Regulation and Privacy Concerns Slow AI Adoption

Barriers to the rapid adoption of generative AI include regulation, compliance, and data privacy. These elements pose significant challenges for businesses looking to leverage AI. These issues have been a concern for the AI ecosystem since the technology became prominent, and they continue to be a hurdle for rapid AI employment.

Despite the current challenges in AI adoption, business leaders remain optimistic about the future role of AI within their organizations. The survey reflected a positive sentiment, with many expecting AI to disrupt their industries and provide competitive opportunities. However, overcoming the obstacles to AI adoption will be crucial for these expectations to be realized.

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