Saturday, June 3

Study reveals that 26% of companies are changing their ESG priorities

Additionally, knowledge workers believe that up to 49% of the data their company uses on a daily basis should be focused on doing good for the communities it serves. 52% of business decision makers agree with this view, clearly indicating that profits and environmental protection are no longer mutually exclusive goals.

These results are revealed in Limitless: The Positive Power of AI Study, which surveyed 2,213 business decision makers – including 54% representation from the C-Suite – and 10,880 knowledge workers in the United States. United States, EMEA, India and APAC. The study shows that ESG is identified as a top priority for business leaders and that those who fail to act for the good of communities put business growth and talent at great risk. The study also examines changing attitudes toward AI, machine learning (ML), and data analytics among business decision makers, including the C-Suite, and knowledge workers. The data shows that all the pieces are in place that this is the right time for companies to accelerate their AI/ML strategy.

Nearly a quarter (24%) of business decision makers and more than one in five (22%) of knowledge workers believe their company should publicly support sustainable business practices. Additionally, the vast majority of knowledge workers (81%) say that AI needs to be used to deliver more sustainable business practices that benefit both their organization and the communities it serves.

But with that said, less than a third (31%) of business decision makers are active in implementing these technologies and have limited understanding of how they work. Companies that address these gaps now gain a true competitive advantage in the battle for customers and talent. If companies truly want to embed sustainability at their core, leaders need to start using data for more sustainable results—and quickly. Without action, 23% of knowledge workers and 27% of business decision makers believe employees will leave the company. This could be a destructive move for the business amid a global talent shortage, especially if all of a company’s competitors are addressing the gap.

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“I truly believe that using big data and AI to make more sustainable business decisions will be a critical aspect of future competitiveness,” said Erica Orange, VP of The Future Hunters. “A critical part of this will come down to rethinking business success metrics to go beyond profit-based metrics and focus on actual environmental impact.”

The research results also dispel the long-standing belief that workers were afraid AI would take their jobs away. The explosion in the volume of data now available to businesses has made AI/ML a common thread across many job functions and a powerful ally. More than half of knowledge workers say their daily tasks have been augmented or automated by AI (55%), ML (51%), and data analytics (63%) in the last 12 months. The biggest benefits of this have been saving time (37%) and allowing them or their team to focus more on strategic work (35%). Furthermore, 80% of knowledge workers feel comfortable taking on a new role thanks to AI/ML/Data Analytics.

To capitalize on this, companies need to do more and invest in reskilling employees. Nine in ten (91%) business decision makers said their organization will commit to continually investing in employee reskilling as more tasks are automated. But investing in people can’t stop there. Companies must also involve employees in skills upgrading and retraining processes to ensure equal conditions for staff.

“The results of this study reveal that a new wave of economics is emerging, focused on doing equally great things for profit, the planet, and people, powered by automation and AI,” said Mick Hollison, President of Cloudera. “For business leaders this means it’s time to refocus the way they think about technology investment, identifying not only the data that will support growth, but also the technology that will help employees and communities gain access significant to them. At Cloudera, we work with our clients to transform their economic performance with Data Analytics and AI.”

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Translation done with the free version of the translator

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