How do SMEs and VSEs view AI at the advent of AI?

Artificial intelligence is currently experiencing a real explosion, leading our society to new technological horizons. Business communities, regardless of industry, are experiencing an unprecedented expansion in the use of AI, revolutionizing the way organizations operate. For some, this appears to be a formidable lever for growth: automation of processes and repetitive tasks makes it possible to achieve gains in efficiency and productivity, the existence of AI-powered chatbots makes the customer experience more fluid, large Analyzes data in quantity and getting accurate information to help in strategic decision making etc. For others, it represents a real threat and many employees fear for their jobs. Aircall, a specialist in the design of cloud-based business telephony solutions, has partnered with research firm Sapio Research to understand companies’ perspective on AI and its use within them. The survey was conducted among 3,500 employees and managers of SMEs in France, Australia, Canada, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States.

AI: The Real Lever for Growth and Productivity

the study was able to reveal that Artificial intelligence generated a lot of excitement among French companies, with 63% of them enthusiastic about its deployment. moreover, Nearly half of these companies confirm their intention to invest in AI in the next 12 months. If companies show themselves to be so open, it is because they are able to see the notorious effects on their employees. For example, in relation to employees, 42% of them already testify to the benefits of AI in terms of efficiency. In particular, they note a significant reduction in the time spent on administrative tasks, which automation makes possible. They can then focus on tasks with the highest added value, thus fostering increased productivity and better use of resources. Companies have the opportunity to devote more of their time to customer service, an aspect that is often unfairly underestimated. Indeed, today less than 4 hours per week is devoted to qualitative interaction with customers. The position summed up perfectly by Jonathan Angulov, co-founder and CSO at Aircall: ” Our study proves that artificial intelligence is seen as an incredible opportunity for growth and productivity for companies and their employees. As sales and customer relations professionals work amid pressure and complexity, the integration of AI will help them be more efficient at understanding the needs of their end customers.,

Too, 44% of French employees interviewed believe AI will lead to greater efficiency In their workplace, especially thanks to the increase in skills made possible by AI and its infinite databases. By increasing productivity, they are 31% hope to have a better work-life balance.

Previously reserved for large enterprises, AI is becoming accessible to a wide range of businesses. Today, only 39% of French VSMEs/SMEs believe that budget hinders the adoption of artificial intelligence within their teams, testifying to the increasing democratization of this technology. A cost/benefit balance that was quickly integrated, since for the 65%, AI could lead to improved business performance and/or increased turnover.

AI: a source of concern for employees

Although artificial intelligence generates a certain enthusiasm, its use raises legitimate concerns among employees. In fact, 49% of employees express apprehension about possible replacement by artificial intelligenceWhereas 43% are concerned about a possible reduction in their salary as a result of its use. currently, 63% of employees surveyed say they lack understanding What can be done with AI. Furthermore, beyond salary concerns, 62% fear the impact of a lack of human connection Driven by AI on the quality of their work.

To allay these doubts and avoid AI excesses, employees expect companies to provide education and training on the subject. Effectively, 3 out of 4 employees would be interested in further training on the use of AI in their daily work.

In order not to rush and skip steps when it comes to integrating AI into their companies, companies must first ensure they have the technical infrastructure and skills needed to implement it effectively, suggests Jonathan Angulov : “This study, however, solidifies the legitimate concerns of employees: fear of being replaced, fear of seeing their pay cut, loss of human connection… So there is a need for caution, and for companies to raise awareness, education and training. Must perform essential tasks of assure and best support your employees.

Although AI is seen as a growth engine and a valuable tool for improving the efficiency of sales and customer relationship professionals, and much more, its use raises questions among employees. As a result, it is essential to implement measures governing the use of AI in order to provide support and training to teams to address these concerns.

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