Business management and culture in the age of AI

– Nicole Seredenko, Head of AI and Insights in DEJI Digital

Artificial intelligence is redefining our approach to business management, with a recent survey of over 2000 global CEOs, finding that 61% identified AI as a potential game-changer for their operations. While some organisations have embraced AI as a tool to streamline and optimise workflows, many are yet to fully recognise its value as a way of promoting more equitable, diverse workplaces.

As we enter the new financial year, the most successful organisations will be defined by their ability to use sensitively applied, tailored AI strategies to promote more equitable and successful workplaces.

Is AI making people irrelevant in business management?

The rise of AI has undeniable ethical concerns for businesses, and organisations must be aware of this if they wish to integrate it into their workflows. According to research from Goldman Sachs in 2023, 300 million jobs could be lost to further AI implementation, promoting fears that AI will soon make employees redundant. With further research finding that 41% of CEOs expect to employ fewer people in the next five years due to AI, employees have very real ethical concerns about the rise of AI, which must be addressed to promote further progress.  

Consequently, businesses must do more to demystify AI in the workplace and emphasise that AI is most effectively used as a supplement for the work of human actors, not a replacement for them. Alleviating workplace concerns surrounding AI demands much greater proactivity and support across the organisation, but particularly from the senior leadership. Through directed tutorials and training, businesses can ensure employees are aware of how AI can be effectively implemented into their workflow and reassure workers that AI implementation will strengthen their operations. Such methods have proven benefits, with over 72% of employees who use AI regularly concluding that it doubles their efficiency and contributes to a much stronger workflow.  

Nicole Seredenko

Properly implemented AI can greatly support businesses’ financial objectives, but this can only come about as part of a wider, holistic business strategy. In 2024, a siloed approach to AI implementation is no longer fit for purpose. Organisations must embrace AI and ensure all employees have the awareness needed to take advantage of the potential it brings.

The Pursuit of Diversity: AI and EDI:  

Despite best efforts, in 2024 equality, diversity and inclusion remain unappreciated by many businesses, with diversity in senior leadership positions still very low. According to research from our team here at Green Park, over half the top 20 roles at the FTSE 350 are still held by white males. Furthermore, unconscious biases continue to shape the hiring process, with research conducted by the US National Bureau of Economic Research finding that individuals with “white-sounding” names, had a 50% better chance to reach the interview stage.

This lack of commitment to EDI amongst businesses must change if they wish to thrive, and organisations should not underestimate the role of AI in this process.

AI can be used to remove biases from the recruitment process, by masking identity markers such as names or addresses in order to limit the influence of bias in the hiring decision and promote more equitable recruitment. Equally, AI can streamline the process of EDI integration, automating the reporting of statistics or drafting of content, allowing them to concentrate on more qualitative measures such as campaigns. Organisations such as DEJI Digital are leading in this regard, offering businesses AI-backed, data-driven tools which help organisations tailor their EDI strategies in accordance with their unique market needs, ensuring EDI contributes to organisations’ wider financial goals.

In 2024, businesses should not retreat from EDI, they should embrace it and acknowledge it as both a moral and financial good for their wider operations and the value of AI as a tool to facilitate this should not be underestimated.

Making AI work for businesses:

Generative AI is here to stay, and many believe it will redefine how organisations carry out their operations. And yet, awareness and education surrounding AI remains shockingly low, preventing businesses from leveraging the full potential of AI implementation, particularly for building more equitable workplace cultures.

In an increasingly digitised age, where debate over Equality and Diversity is still a regular presence in the media, the most intelligent businesses will be the ones that are willing to take a more ambitious approach to the relationship between EDI and AI. Failure to do so will only limit their continued growth.

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