As business owners seek out alternative ways to overcome efficiency and productivity hurdles, 9 out of 10 are open to using artificial intelligence (AI) solutions to automate tasks, according to a new report by Microsoft.
The survey, which gathered feedback from 1,800 businesses across the US, UK, and Japan, also revealed that 3 out of 4 respondents want greater access to low or no-code tools — like customer relationship management (CRM) and project management software — to drive forward their success.
And Microsoft is listening. The global tech provider, which already uses machine learning to enhance Office 365, has just pledged to invest a further $10 billion in ChatGPT's creator, OpenAI.
Businesses Are Ready for AI, According to Microsoft
With 30% of companies currently relying on AI and machine learning to maintain the accuracy of their data, the business landscape is clearly no stranger to the technology.
However, new findings from Microsoft reveal that 90% of businesses are ready to utilize AI solutions even more, to help them gain valuable insights, eliminate repetitive tasks and ultimately, improve workplace collaboration.
But how are businesses currently using AI? According to Microsoft's report, algorithmic-led technology can assist business operations in myriad ways.
For instance, the company's current utilization of AI in Microsoft 365 helps businesses across the world to catch mistakes easier in Word documents, schedule tasks with greater ease, and boost productivity by making it easier to analyze work habit data.
The report also cites Robert Critchley, the vice president of exercise transportation company iFit, who uses Microsoft's AI-driven Supply Chain Center to assist in inventory allocation.
“With AI we can gauge exactly which units are likely to sell in a particular area. And it’s 70% more accurate than when we were doing it manually.” – Robert Critchley, Vice President of iFit
According to Critchley, by doing the tedious work for him, these tools reduce the “manual grinding” and “human error” that was associated with his company's previous methods, making switching to smart tech a no-brainer.
Businesses Are Also Embracing Low Code Tools
In fact, according to the report, 77% of businesses wish they had greater access to no and low-code tools or platforms to build better digital solutions, while 84% believe the ability to create custom-built apps could help to improve their teams collaboration.
This willingness to adopt the tech is hardly surprising. According to Microsoft’s 2022 Low-Code Trend Report, these types of tools can help businesses in numerous ways by automating repetitive and menial tasks, reducing costs, and improving analytic capabilities.
So, whether businesses choose to rely on existing software, or use no code tech to develop platforms in-house, you can expect to see a lot more of these tools in the near future.
Microsoft Expands its Partnership with ChatGPT
Fortunately for the 90% of businesses looking to embrace AI, Microsoft is one step ahead. The technology provider recently announced a new multi-year $10 billion investment with OpenAI, the research lab behind ChatGPT and DALL-E.
The two companies already boast a close relationship, with OpenAI assisting the development of Microsoft Azure, and Microsoft acting as the lab's exclusive provider of cloud computing services.
However, the latest round of investment will turbocharge Microsoft's use of AI even further, helping the company to make major changes to its ‘Bing' search engine, its cloud provider Azure, and Microsoft Office, and remaining ahead of Google, Apple, and Meta when it comes to generative AI.
Speaking on the matter, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said the strengthening of this partnership was part of the companies refocus on AI, which he dubbed “the next major wave of computing.”
Yet, for the 10,000 former Microsoft workers that recently fell victim to the company's mass layoffs, this multi-billion dollar investment is likely to come with a sting.