Here’s what I know: AI should assist not ascend

  • Data Protection
colleagues gathered round a laptop

Peter Done, Group Managing Director and Founder

(Last updated )

As the world becomes increasingly technology-centric, AI tools are now a hot topic. Tools that promise to take over your mundane admin tasks and save you buckets of time? It’s no surprise they’re getting such traction.

But many business leaders are still sceptical of using AI in the workplace. And looking at the results of our study, UK leaders are top of the list.

It begs the debate: is AI a good thing? Or is its growing popularity something for us to worry about?

Peninsula Group carried out a global survey to find out.

We put forward questions to 79,000 businesses across five countries - Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, and the UK. So, we could learn what they really think about AI.

And here’s what we found out…

First of all, only about 1% of UK employers actually say that AI plays a large part in their business and only 5% use it regularly. This tells us that while AI may be on the rise, it certainly isn’t living up to its reputation as a world-dominating force (at least, not yet).

In fact, the UK was actually the most indifferent to AI out of all five countries. 43% of employers said that AI had a positive impact on business productivity. But only 28% agreed that it had the power to positively transform workplaces; the smallest percentage of the lot.

Perhaps a big part of this is down to fear. Fear of the unknown. Fear of the risks.

The number one concern around AI usage, after all, was security risks. Concerns over possible errors and quality of work followed.

To me, these concerns all point to one key takeaway. And that’s how important it is to remember that AI should assist, not ascend businesses.

Here’s a prime example. At Peninsula, we make use of Brainbox; an AI tool that combines both technology and the legal expertise of our employment law advisers. Brainbox is a quick and easy way for our clients to get fast answers to their HR and health & safety queries.

It means they get instant support with issues that may not require a lengthy phone call – which is especially handy if they’re ever in a rush or in a public place. Whether they want to fact-check a query about annual leave or an employee right, they’ve got their answer in a click.

This shows how AI can be a great tool to complement human skill, without taking away from it.

Because if our clients want to find out more, Peninsula experts are on hand to supplement that information with in-person support.

And it’s worth remembering that while AI tools can really help, they’re not perfect.

AI still requires a human touch for quality control and data protection purposes. Otherwise, businesses could face issues around copyright infringements and potential data breaches. Our HR Advice and Consultancy Adviser Kate Palmer covers this in more depth here.

As our Chief Operations Officer Alan Price tells Forbes: AI ultimately shouldn’t replace people.  

To learn more about using AI tools safely at work, don’t hesitate to get in touch for expert advice.

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