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Employees comfortable leaning on AI for admin tasks

Most (70%) employees would delegate as much work as possible to AI according Microsoft’s global 2023 Work Trend Index Annual Report. 

There are 33 times as many LinkedIn posts mentioning generative AI and GPT than there were a year ago, with 82% of leaders anticipating employees will need new skills in the AI era. 

Many employees are already comfortable using AI for administrative tasks (76%), analytical work (79%) and creative work (73%). 

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Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, said: “This new generation of AI will remove the drudgery of work and unleash creativity. There’s an enormous opportunity for AI-powered tools to help alleviate digital debt, build AI aptitude, and empower employees.” 

A further 62% of employees said they currently spend too much time coordinating and having less time for deep thinking and creating.  

Meanwhile, nearly two in three leaders (60%) said a lack of innovation or breakthrough ideas on their teams is a concern. 

Chibeza Agley, CEO of AI learning platform Obrizum, said AI can improve staff productivity and creativity. 

Speaking to HR magazine, he said: “AI is a hugely beneficial tool for driving productivity and efficiency by leveraging capabilities that may be lacking in the tools that are currently available to the workforce.  

“Regardless of experience or expertise, we’ve all found ourselves in a creative rut in need of a helping hand to overcome the ‘blank paper problem’. For that, AI can be hugely valuable to guide us in the right direction.” 

Around half (49%) of respondents said AI gave them concerns about job security, but Agley assured AI cannot be relied upon to make ethical and complex decisions. 

He said: “Whilst AI is great for automating many of the mundane tasks that employees may have to carry out on a daily basis, it cannot replace the level of insight and decision-making that a subject matter expert can provide and therefore should not be used to create original content.”  

Agley said AI can be used to support staff, rather than replace them. 

“AI can present information that already exists but cannot always decide what is right or what is best,” he said. “Use that knowledge to champion your staff members and ensure AI is seen as an enabler, not a replacement of roles.” 

Gosia Adamczyk, director of HR at Verve Group said HR teams can support employees by challenging the negative narrative about AI.

Speaking to HR magazine, she said: "While the nature of our jobs is likely to change, just as it did with the introduction of computers and the world wide web, this does not mean that our work will become redundant.

"It shows us that major changes in the labour market generate new needs and create new jobs, which we can see now with the proliferation of AI-focused roles such as prompt engineers.”

Adamczyk said upskilling workers will help reassure them that AI will not threaten their jobs.

“Our role as HR teams is to build confidence that people can use AI to their advantage, starting with the acceptance that these tools are here to stay and that we need to keep our minds open and learn to work with them.

"Getting employees involved in researching the use case for AI in different departments and investing in their individual skills development should help to reassure employees that we want to make the transition work for them as well as for the business. ”

The Work Trend Index survey was conducted by an independent research firm, Edelman Data x Intelligence, among 31,000 full-time employed or self-employed workers across 31 markets between February 1, 2023, and March 14, 2023.