Veritas: How Gen AI Tools are Transforming the Workplace

Gen AI in the workplace is simultaneously creating a divide between employees while also putting organisations at risk
Gen AI tools are transforming the way the world works, but Veritas report finds businesses are offering little guidance on AI in the workplace

Confusion over generative AI (Gen AI) in the workplace is simultaneously creating a divide between employees while also putting organisations at risk, according to new research from Veritas Technologies

Research by IDC, sponsored by Microsoft, has found that organisations waging their bets on AI are seeing tangible business impact, with the study finding that for every $1 a company invests in AI it is realising an average of $3.5X. However a report from Blackberry highlights ongoing concerns over Gen AI in the workplace: suggesting that three-quarters of global organisations are currently implementing or considering bans on ChatGPT and other generative AI tools in the workplace amid concerns over data security and privacy

According to the report from Veritas, almost half (49%) of UK office workers are using Gen AI at least once a week, signalling a shift in the way work gets done. In fact, a fifth (19%) are using Gen AI tools such as ChatGPT at work every single day.   

Worryingly, two-fifths (38%) of office workers admitted that they or a colleague has inputted sensitive information, such as customer, financial or sales data, into a public Gen AI tool. Many employees, 60%, fail to recognise that doing so could result in sensitive information leaking outside the corporate walls, with a similar number, 62%, not understanding that this can cause their organisation problems when it comes to data privacy compliance regulations. 

Veritas’ data also reveals that the workforce is frustrated at the current lack of guidance from employers when it comes to the use of public generative AI tools in the workplace. Half (49%) are calling for guidelines or mandatory policies on generative AI use from their bosses as many businesses, 44%, currently offer no guidance at all. According to Veritas, businesses who fail to offer guidance not only put themselves at risk from a security perspective; they also risk missing out on the potential value that AI technology could bring to the workplace. 

AI is increasingly used in the workplace 

The research from Veritas found that two-fifths of UK office workers (37%) are using AI to do their research, 43% are using it to write their emails, and a fifth (17%) are using generative AI to help write company reports. One in 10 meanwhile say they are simply using it to look good in front of their boss.    ​​​​​​​

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The use of generative AI is leading to drastic divisions between co-workers, with 29% believing that colleagues who are using it should be reported to line managers, and a quarter believing they should either get a pay cut (23%) or face disciplinary action (25%).  

“Without guidance from leaders on how or if to utilise generative AI, some employees are using it in ways that put their organisations at risk, even as others hesitate to use it at all and resent their colleagues for doing so,” says Sonya Duffin, Solutions Lead at Veritas Technologies. “Neither situation is ideal. Organisations could face regulatory compliance violations or miss out on opportunities to increase efficiency across their entire workforce. Both issues can be resolved with effective generative AI guidelines and policies on what’s OK and what’s not.

“The message is clear: thoughtfully develop and clearly communicate guidelines and policies on the appropriate use of generative AI and combine that with the right data compliance and governance toolset to monitor and manage their implementation and ongoing enforcement. Your employees will thank you and your organisation can enjoy the benefits without increasing risk”.

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