Posted on October 1, 2019 by staff

81% of UK firms say skills gap is preventing AI adoption


The adoption of AI and automation tech in the UK is still being stunted by a lack of digital skills in businesses.

That is the according to new research by Rainbird, an AI-powered automated decision-making platform.

The research surveyed senior decision-makers in enterprise organisations, and that the main reason behind businesses not implementing AI is a shortage of talent in their workforce for handling automation processes.

The data suggests a number of different concerns across business functions, including a lack of regulation at 87.5 per cent.

In financial services it reports that the technology’s “lack of transparency” inhibits its adoption, whereas within the IT industry shortage of talent has become a major hurdle.

James Duez, CEO at Rainbird said AI should be brought in to organsations to help them, rather than causing concern.

“UK organisations – and beyond – need to fundamentally change the way they are adopting AI, and think beyond big data and machine learning,” he said.

“’Black box’ solutions are only understood by data scientists, and there are huge benefits to be had by moving towards more transparent symbolic technologies which can achieve automation outcomes beyond those available with data-only approaches. Such accessible tools also have the added benefit of addressing the skills gap, by making AI far more accessible to employees without a degree in data science.”

In the next 5-10 years, respondents predict that the greatest demand for AI will come from the IT department, and will most benefit operations, marketing and communications, and finance.

Duez continued: “In order to truly understand what processes will benefit from AI, businesses must review their strategies. Rather than pushing AI investment into IT departments, organisations should recognise where the most important decisions are being made – within the business.

“Symbolic tools are business-friendly, rapid to work with and completely auditable and it is these that will unlock the streamlining and automation of operational decisions.”