Three-fifths (60%) of UK companies are already using artificial intelligence, or plan to start using it in the next 12 months, with over a third (37%) using AI to drive business objectives, provide more efficiency and reduce cost.
So says a study carried out by Genesys, which also reveals that 42% of UK companies expect to see a positive impact on their businesses within 12 months of deploying AI-based solutions.
There are, however, still a number of barriers to applying AI, according to UK bosses. The study found that 40% of employers believe implementation will be too complex, which could be seen as surprising considering the number of businesses that have already implemented an AI solution or plan to do so in the near future.
Nearly a quarter (24%) believe there is a hesitation within their company leadership when it comes to the adoption of new technologies like AI, bots and augmented reality, citing suspicion that the value of these technologies is over-hyped.
Further, 20% are concerned about the cost of adopting the systems, but this much less of a concern for companies with more than 50 employees. For 16% of businesses, there is hesitation that deployment and training will take too long and cause too much disruption.
UK businesses considering the use of AI need to ensure that their deployments complement and assist their workforce.
A separate survey by Genesys found 64% of employees believe companies should be required to maintain a minimum percentage of workers compared with AI-powered robots and machinery. Employees can take solace in the fact that 61% of employers agree that a minimum percentage of employees should be maintained.
Genesys UK & Ireland vice president Mark Armstrong said: "It’s not surprising that the majority of UK employers recognise the value in AI. The most successful AI deployments will combine the best data, technologies and people.
"Forward thinking businesses will understand this intelligent technology will have the most impact when it is used to automate repetitive tasks and complements the skills of workers to make their jobs easier and more fulfilling."