Paper Title: Artificial intelligence in the contemporary business world
Chiheb Chaabane, MBM GB
Mediterranean School of Business
Artificial intelligence in the contemporary business world
The end of the business world as we know it might be knocking doors. As Stephen Hawking stated, “The automation of factories has already decimated jobs in traditional manufacturing, and the rise of artificial intelligence is likely to extend this job destruction deep into the middle classes, with only the most caring, creative or supervisory roles remaining.” The modern automated systems requiring machine learning algorithms will still develop following Moore’s law that highlights how technology doubles every eighteen months. This is a frightening fact, especially if one considers the negative implications that this might engender.
If artificial intelligence is not fully integrated within the workforce, the unemployment rate will not increase, more job positions requiring routine activities will still be available, and the human side that makes up the corporate culture will not subside.
One might assume that integrating artificially designed systems within a workforce would eventually yield an increased unemployment rate, as more workers will be displaced from their current positions. In fact, tasks requiring analytical skills in accounting and finance positions will be completely automated within the next few decades. Activities involving cognitive capabilities carried out by stock traders and tax preparers for instance, will be upgraded thanks to the integration of machine learning programs, and therefore several of those positions will disappear. This is relevant for all manual and cognitive routine tasks which will be impacted by automation.
In less than a decade, according to top consultancy and auditing firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), approximately twenty-one percent of the jobs in Japan, thirty percent of jobs in the United Kingdom, thirty-five percent of jobs in Germany, and thirty-eight percent of jobs in the United States, for a combined total of ninety-four percent of jobs in four leading economies of the developed world will be replaced by the machine. It is obviously a frightening fact for the modern business workforce to know that more than fifty percent of positions will gradually cease to exist by the next century (Taylor, 2017). Brisk technological advancement and digitalization might therefore affect employment negatively.
Indeed, implementing innovative processes to improve the efficiency of business operations might substantially increase the unemployment rate in the labor market due to the displacement effect mentioned in John Maynard Keynes’s ‘technological unemployment theory’ which dates back to the 1930’s. It basically states that the rise of technological innovations will cause unemployment by dismissing workers from executing routine tasks, and replacing them with more sophisticated programs that would lead to a better performance. (Petropoulos, 2018).
Even though increased efficiency and productivity is always sought after by business leaders as part of their strategies, they should consider the important role of individuals in terms of decision-making before fully implementing artificial intelligence in the workforce. Undoubtedly, the creative impact that people exhibit inside organizations is what positions them ahead of robots. In fact, corporate culture which is a strong aspect of the business environment is mainly shaped by people who collaborate together, trust one another, and coordinate their activities within business entities.
Therefore, a main competitive advantage that humans possess is their emotional intelligence and critical thinking ability which cannot be duplicated. It is obvious that many machines were set up to accomplish narrow chores as part of their operating systems, while people can use their creativity to display their respective blueprints which leads to a more desirable outcome. The collective experiences shared between various departments as well as employees’ ability to think outside the box is what makes humans better than robots at performing common tasks. (Petropoulos, 2018).
Moreover, Robots cannot take over non-routine tasks performed by humans as we would need highly skilled workers to program them according to the companies’ goals, as well as lay out suitable business strategies for an optimized set of processes. In addition, people have critical advantages when it comes to exploiting their sense of empathy to learn from the experiences of others, as well as reaping the benefits of the lessons acquired in previous tasks to better carry out prospective assignments. (Petropoulos, 2018). Self-awareness is what encompasses emotional intelligence, creativity, and critical thinking which cannot be coded into a software. (Onibalusi, 2017).
Despite the hindering factors of a full workforce automation, many fanatics still argue that the implementation of artificial intelligence can be achieved smoothly due to the gradual introduction of automated systems in various contexts. They share a firm belief that the average consumer will be willing to interact with machines once they become well informed about its attributes. However, people prefer to talk to humans in order to articulate customer service related issues, and communicate with a person who can adjust their answers to assimilate misunderstandings in specific situations. (Onibalusi, 2017).
It is important to consider the array of new opportunities that artificial intelligence brings to the contemporary business world. Indeed, “machine learning can help efficiently process data that was too complex or expensive to analyze before, giving insights into processes that can be optimized in new ways.” (Elliot, 2018, p. 7). However, this advancement should not be fully integrated within the modern workforce mainly due to the increase in the unemployment rate that will arise and the displacement of highly qualified employees. By not fully incorporating artificial programs, one would secure corporate culture, ensure higher productivity, and improve business practices without relying on a substitute.
Elliott, T. ( 2018, MAY 25). Retrieved from https://timoelliott.com/blog/2018/05/three-ways-to-implement-ai-for-business.html
Onibalusi, L. (2017, August 2 ). Retrieved from https://tech.co/robots-replace-humans-work-2017-08?fbclid=IwAR2XUl3FLCDVcNqcpTPQp37QNE8hgIVonq765QxOLdaR8FSbWggw5ISM5H0
Petropoulos, G. (2018, 7). Retrieved from http://bruegel.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/Impact-of-AI-Petroupoulos.pdf?fbclid=IwAR2oFuZ4jHyraLxUn26kRzM5WbTCq_BY63q7Ovj9UhNhyhJ5PeH7NXJXNRU
TAYLOR, O. (2017, DECEMBER 4). Retrieved from http://listverse.com/2017/12/04/top-10-scary-facts-about-artificial-intelligence/