Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Report: Pinoy workers lead the world in use of AI tools

Technology firms Microsoft and LinkedIn released on Thursday, May 23, the results of “2024 Work Trend Index Annual Report”, which showed how AI is reshaping the workplace in the Philippines and around the world. 

The study revealed that there is indeed adoption of AI in the workplace, supporting and improving both the employees and employers work experience. 

It was found that among knowledge workers, 75% of them already use AI in their work, with 78% to 80% of that figure bringing their own AI tools into their respective companies. 

There are some uncertainties from the employers’ perspectives, but 79% agree that they have to incorporate AI at some point, to keep up with the current market demands.

The Philippines actually leads the AI trend, with 86% of knowledge workers already using AI, and 83% bringing their own AI tools. 

There’s also a lower concern among Filipino leadership on the lack of AI, going up to only 55%, compared to the global concern of 60%.

However, a smaller percentage of Filipino leaders (68%) will hire a less experienced employee with AI skills than a more experienced candidate, compared to the global and regional averages of 71% and 76%.

Based on the survey’s parameters, AI could be as simple as a tool aiding a worker in formulating a better-worded email, formulating quick answers to queries, or producing an email thread summary.

During the press briefing at the new office of Microsoft Philippines at One Ayala building in Makati City, Microsoft Philippines CEO Peter Maquera stressed that no matter how beneficial AI is to the current workplace environment, there still a need for regulation. 

“AI is not a universal thing.  It is easier to incorporate in certain industries like communication and education, but less for sales and hospitality industries, since they require human judgment,” Maquera, also a former Globe top executive, said. 

However, Maquera said AI could still ease the stress of menial work, allowing people to focus on more important tasks, or exercise some creativity with their work. That is why the demand for people with AI skills is growing, he added. 

A majority of the leaders surveyed in the study actually preferred candidates with AI skills, even if they don’t have as much experience as others. 

AI could be tuned to address any problems of a company and implement it seamlessly as long as everyone is trained properly with its use, according to the report.

Aside from Maquera, also present during the press event were LinkedIn head of growth markets and country lead for the Philippines Atul Harkisanka and Microsoft Philippines head of PR and communication Josh Aquino. 

“As the Philippines witnesses a transformative shift in the workplace due to AI, companies are realizing the need for a new talent playbook,” Harkisanka said.

“With how rapidly the talent ecosystem evolves, leaders who prioritize agility and invest in skills development to build an AI-ready workforce gain a competitive edge. 68% of Filipino business leaders will hire a less experienced candidate with AI skills, emphasizing the urgency and importance for professionals to focus on advancing their AI aptitude through upskilling.”

To address the demand for AI skills, LinkedIn is releasing 50 new AI learning courses and AI tools to better assess the fitness of workers with certain job openings. 

Microsoft, on the other hand, is releasing updates for the Copilot for Microsoft 365, giving it a new chat interface for an easier and more conversational utility. 

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