New market research commissioned by IBM found that nearly a third of IT businesses around the world are now using Artificial Intelligence (AI). Nearly 43 per cent of the IT professionals surveyed around the world also said that their company had accelerated the rollout of AI as a result of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. While recent advances in the technology are making AI more accessible than ever, the annual survey conducted by Morning Consult also found that a lack of AI skills and increasing data complexity are top challenges being faced by the global IT industry.
IBM’s “Global AI Adoption Index 2021” revealed that while AI adoption was flat over the last year, momentum is shifting as the need for AI has been accelerated by changing business needs due to the global Covid-19 pandemic. AI is already changing the way businesses operate today, from how they communicate with their customers via virtual assistants, to automating key workflows, and even managing network security. Another recent IBM research revealed that more than half of CEOs expect AI to deliver tangible business benefits in the next few years.
Commenting on India, IBM said that over half (53 per cent) of Indian IT professionals said that their company has accelerated its rollout of AI due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Indian IT professionals are also most likely to say that the pandemic has increased their focus on security and threats (43 per cent).
Indian IT professionals are most likely to see limited expertise or knowledge (52 per cent) and increasing data complexity and data silos (50 per cent) as barriers to AI adoption. Nearly all (95 per cent) IT professionals in India believe that it is critical or very important to their business that they can trust AI’s output is fair, safe and reliable.
“While IBM’s Global AI Adoption Index 2020 shows that AI adoption was flat last year, the data in the survey and in our own customer discussions show a major uptick in AI investments as organisations move to a post-pandemic world,” said Rob Thomas, senior vice-president, IBM Cloud and Data Platform.
“A large majority of those investments continue to be focused on the three key capabilities that define AI for business - automating IT and processes, building trust in AI outcomes, and understanding the language of business. We believe these investments will continue to accelerate rapidly as customers look for new, innovative ways to drive their digital transformations by taking advantage of hybrid cloud and AI,” he said.