Artificial Intelligence fear is felt by 93% of automation technologists according to a survey by semrush.com. They feel unprepared for the challenges of smart machine technology because their staff don’t have the right skills (56% of companies), they fear the unknown and perhaps unknowable (42%) and a concern about where do we start? (26%) At the same time 75% of executives in the same semrush.com study fear going out of business within five years if they don’t scale AI. Where is AI currently succeeding and what is the future of AI?
Cost savings and improved services have been experienced the most with AI in warehouse automation and contact center automation. Supply chain management saw a 44% decrease in costs from implementing AI technology in 2019. As many as 20 million manufacturing jobs may be lost to robots by 2030. This will be offset by the growth in demand for AI and machine learning specialists as well as process automation specialists.
Almost 40% of companies say that customer experience is their top motivator for using AI. In 2020 80% of marketers already have chatbots as part of their customer experience strategy and chatbots responded to 85% of customer service interactions…85%! In 2019 40% of the U.S. population used voice search and 45% owned a smart speaker. In 2020 there were 4.2 billion digital voice assistants in use worldwide and that number is expected to double in the next four years. Netflix’s recommendations engine, an AI vehicle, is worth $1 billion a year.
The current clear winners in offsetting artificial intelligence fear are the cloud computing companies. Amazon Web Services has Lex, a business version of Alexa, Polly, which turns text to speech, and Rekognition, an image recognition service. Google Cloud has an industry-leading software product in TensorFlow as well as a Tensor AI chip product. IBM has been working in AI since the 1950s and the IBM Cloud has been acquiring companies to scale-out its cloud-based analytics and AI services. Microsoft Azure Cloud service sells bot services, machine learning and cognitive services.
Accenture says that AI has the potential to boost rates of profitability by an average of 38% and could add $14 trillion in gross value added by 2035. The forecasted AI annual growth rate between 2020 and 2027 is 33.2%. How do companies get past their artificial intelligence fear and participate in this juggernaut?
A 2020 prediction said that AI would eliminate 1.8 million jobs and create 2.3 million new ones. Manufacturers have already started hiring data scientists and data quality analysts and other industries must follow suit. Universities and boot camps are trying to educate enough candidates to fill this change in need. By 2022 companies are expected to have an average of 35 AI projects in place and they are only limited by the ability to hire the expertise needed.