Study finds nearly half of organizations have implemented or are piloting Gen AI technology
One in four IT executives believe their organization is moving too fast when it comes to deploying Gen AI technology
Boston, Mass. – October 10, 2023 – Foundry, the media, data, and martech division of IDG, Inc., today released its inaugural 2023 AI Priorities Study. The study comes at a time when ChatGPT and a host of other Generative AI (Gen AI) tools are becoming widely accessible, even as organizations grapple with the technology’s reach, power and capabilities. Foundry surveyed global IT decision-makers (ITDMs) to understand AI and Gen AI use cases, investment and implementation levels, and the challenges these technologies pose for organizations.
One standout discovery was how widespread Gen AI adoption already is among organizations. Almost half of ITDMs reported implementing (20%) or piloting (25%) Gen AI technology to some extent in their organization, and an additional 47% are actively researching the technology. Yet despite this rapid rate of adoption, nearly one-quarter of ITDMs expressed concerns that their organization is moving too fast with respect to the use of Gen AI.
“Generative AI is poised to unleash the next wave of productivity within organizations, and IT leaders are extensively researching and piloting these technologies to understand their full potential and mitigate the risks,” said Stacey Raap, Marketing & Research Manager, Foundry. “We undertook this AI Priorities study to understand the marketplace dynamics and align priorities surrounding AI, namely the driving objectives among organizations, the specific implementation concerns, and how vendors can build products and educational tools that address both, and hone in on the specifics around Gen AI.”
Integration Speed Bumps
Due to AI and machine learning’s ability to constantly monitor and analyze large amounts of data, and automate mundane activities, it is no surprise that ITDMs reported their current top use cases for AI applications to be data analysis, employee productivity, and process automation. However, only 34% say that their organization currently has the right data and technology in place to enable effective AI.
AI technologies also present challenges and ethical implications that ITDMs must address when implementing it into their IT systems and processes, including data privacy (prioritizing data privacy and ensure that AI systems handle and process data compliantly), security and robustness (strength and ability to protect AI models and data from unauthorized access), and transparency and explainability (ability to understand how decisions are made and access to explanations).
Specific to Gen AI, top factors impacting the integration with existing systems include data integration (45%), security and privacy (45%), and user experience (34%). Alarmingly, only 36% of ITDMs reported that their organization has a policy in place and/or system in place to monitor the use of Gen AI.
Preparing for the AI-Driven Workplace
Despite these apprehensions, the vast majority of organizations and IT leaders are preparing for a workplace that embraces Gen AI. ITDMs are actively identifying use cases (57%), initiating pilot programs (45%), training/upskilling employees on Gen AI (41%), and establishing policies and guidelines (40%).
Regarding the addition of Gen AI capabilities into existing vendors’ product areas, 38% affirmed their vendors have added Gen AI into productivity/collaboration tools, 26% marketing/sales, 25% CRM, and 25% security tools. The majority of ITDMs also say that these additions have resulted in some/strong positive impact, and they believe productivity, marketing/sales, and security would benefit from additional Gen AI capabilities.
Investing in the AI Future
Recognizing AI’s vast potential to enhance company operations and fuel growth, the majority of IT decision-makers remain enthusiastic about investing in these technologies. Three quarters are either actively researching or piloting AI initiatives, and when it comes to Gen AI specifically, a mere 8% expressed no interest (11% SMB vs. 5% enterprise). Currently, 36% of all ITDMs and 45% of enterprise IT leaders have dedicated budgets for AI projects, with 61% anticipating an increase in AI spending in 2024.
The top five business objectives driving AI investments include improving employee productivity, enabling innovation, gaining a competitive edge, improving customer support or services, and developing new products or services. Reflecting the value of achieving these priorities, 44% of ITDMs agree that their organization is willing to pay more for AI-infused products from vendors.
As ITDMs work to enhance their understanding of how to integrate AI technologies for the greatest business benefits, technology vendors must keep customers informed on effective tool utilization and share their product roadmap. This will allow organizations to plan strategically for the integration of AI products and services into their organizations.
For more information and to see the full results from the AI Priorities study, please view the executive summary. To explore how Foundry engages with decision-makers researching and investing in AI solutions, contact us.
About the 2023 AI Priorities Study
Foundry’s 2023 AI Priorities Study is the first year of this research and was conducted to gain a better understanding of how organizations are leveraging AI and generative AI, specifically looking at their investment and implementation levels, use cases, measures of success and challenges. The study was fielded throughout August 2023 and is based on the responses of 965 global IT decision-makers who have AI and generative AI plans.
About Foundry, an IDG Inc. Company
Foundry helps companies bring their visions to reality through a combination of media, marketing technologies, and proprietary data on a global scale. Our intent data and martech platforms are powered by data from an owned and operated ecosystem of global editorial brands, awards, and events, all engineered and integrated to drive marketing campaigns for technology companies. Foundry is dedicated to generating and innovating with data, driving demand for technology marketers with 38 offices in global markets. Foundry is a wholly owned subsidiary of International Data Group, Inc. (IDG), the world’s leading tech media, data, research, and marketing services company. To learn more about Foundry, visit www.foundryco.com.