GenAI more buzz than biz as tech barely dents jobs, says survey

Despite some astronomical vendor valuations and predictions that it will transform society, the impact of GenAI in the workplace has yet to materialize, according to a recent global survey.

Similarly, the much-hyped technology is yet to make an impact on jobs, according to interviews with 322 tech leaders globally.

About half (51 percent) of organizations have deployed GenAI to "some extent," while 21 percent have adopted it to a greater extent, the research from tech recruitment and jobs company Nash Squared found.

"The actual use cases of GenAI impacting organizations are mixed," the report says. "Most are experimenting and piloting in a number of areas."

Of those that have deployed GenAI, 39 percent say it has had little or no impact on their organization. "The vast majority of GenAI uses have been as a personal productivity tool, helping with research, speeding up the creation of documents or marketing literature, and supporting office admin," according to the report.

The findings are in stark contrast to some predictions about the effects of GenAI in the workplace. The technology should be "revolutionizing productivity and spurring innovation across all sectors," according to a fizzing report from consultancy EY. Tech vendors have also been falling over each other to tell the world how they are including GenAI in their offerings as the leading AI companies attract feverish attention from investors.

Yet tech research company Gartner has forecast a modest impact on IT spending from AI as companies begin to pilot rather than fully implement the technology. Microsoft, for example, continues to run proof of concept programs to convince customers of the productivity benefits of Copilot.

The Nash Squared survey found that companies had yet to prove the business case for mass investment in GenAI, according to 54 percent of respondents. Meanwhile, budgetary limits and concerns around misuse of the tools were also significant factors.

The impact on jobs has been similarly muted. Globally, tech leader interviews showed that just one in ten have reported job roles changing, and just 1 percent are seeing jobs replaced.

In a prepared statement, Bev White, CEO of Nash Squared, said: "Although the 'replace jobs' impact of GenAI is headline-grabbing news, in fact the Pulse Survey indicates that organizations with company-wide implementations of GenAI are in fact more likely to be increasing tech headcount in the next year than the average." ®

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