Desk workers are optimistic about the impact of generative AI

Salesforce polled over 4,000 full-time desk professionals as part of its Generative AI Snapshot Research Series, discovering that while 54% of workers feel generative AI would boost their careers, 62% believe they lack the skills to use the technology successfully and responsibly. According to a recent poll, barely one in ten worldwide workers has overall, in-demand AI skills. According to the research, while employees want to learn and expect their employers to give opportunities for upskilling, employers frequently fall short of expectations.

Respondents believe generative AI will transform their role. In fact, 62% say generative AI will require a new set of skills at work and 56% say the technology will transform their role altogether. With the help of generative AI, workers say they can focus on strategic work and save time:

  • 65% believe generative AI will allow them to focus on more strategic work.
  • Workers believe generative AI will save them five hours per week – the equivalent of one month per year for full-time workers – at work.*

There is a generative AI skills gap

While workers are optimistic about the potential of generative AI, they lack the know-how to take full advantage of this rapidly-evolving technology.

  • 40% say they don’t know how to effectively use generative AI at work.
  • 43% say they don’t know how to leverage generative AI using trusted data sources and while keeping first-party data secure.
  • 53% don’t know how to get the most value out of generative AI.

 Desk workers expect their company to close the skills gap, but employers are lagging

Workers are eager to learn and look to their employers for guidance, but employers are failing to deliver. Nearly the same number of workers (66%) claim that their employer does not provide training on the technology, while two out of three workers (67%) anticipate their business to offer opportunities to learn how to utilize generative AI.

Business leaders see clear cost-saving incentives to closing the generative AI skills gap:

  • 82% of business leaders say generative AI will lower overall business costs.
  • 80% of business leaders say generative AI will increase revenue.

“Generative AI presents massive opportunities for businesses and workers alike. However, as AI becomes more common in the workplace, the skills gap will continue to widen,” said Ann Weeby, SVP of Trailhead, Salesforce. “Companies have a responsibility to democratize access to needed skills and training to close the AI skills gap.”

“AI has the potential to transform jobs across every industry and specialty,” said Brent Hyder, President and Chief People Officer, Salesforce. “Employers must anticipate these kinds of seismic technological shifts and provide resources and training to ensure the success of their employees, customers, and ultimately their business.”