Artificial Intelligence could contribute an additional 1.2% to annual GDP growth for at least the next decade, according to a recent McKinsey Global Institute report. But significant gaps between regions, organisations and workers will need to be managed to reap maximum benefits.
Overall, AI has the potential to deliver additional global economic activity of around $13 trillion by 2030, or about 16% higher cumulative GDP compared with today.
The institute’s model expects about 70% of companies to adopt at least one form of AI by 2030
If these figures are accurate, the impact would compare well with that of other general-purpose technologies through history, such as the steam engine.
Challenges of adoption
Alex Guillen, Market Manager at Insight UK, said: “Artificial Intelligence paves the way towards creating a next-generation workforce, where bots deal with the time-consuming repetitive tasks offer organisations the change to redeploy workers to more engaging and value-creating tasks.”
“But as business leaders increase adoption of complex AI, they’re going to look at how to configure the organisation to manage, monitor and support the bots – just like you would people. To be successful, organisations need to have a culture fitting of automation in the same way they need a culture to fit a diverse workforce.”
“What organisations need to realise is that technology has and is continuing to transform the way we work. The future will move fast, and this will put a premium on people and organisations who can adapt quickly.”
Guillen’s remarks reflect McKinsey’s research which also warned that despite AI’s ability to deliver economic growth, the benefits are likely to be uneven.
According to the report: “AI might widen gaps between countries, reinforcing the current digital divide. Countries might need different strategies and responses as AI-adoption rates vary.”
“Leading AI countries could capture an additional 20% to 25% in net economic benefits, compared with today, while developing countries might capture only about 5% to 15%.”
In developing countries, where wages are lower, the benefits of substituting labour with technology yield a smaller economic benefit.