Businesses expect to double their AI usage this year

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Businesses that work with artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) are set to grow their usage of the technology in the next few years, according to a new Gartner report.

The analyst firm found that most top businesses currently have four AI or ML projects running today on average, and expect to add six more projects within the next 12 months.

Within three years, businesses expect to add another 15 AI / ML projects, meaning that by the time we hit 2022, many companies will have an average of 35 AI / ML projects in place.

Businesses use AI and ML mostly to improve their customer experience, but they find the technology super useful internally, to support decision-making and give employees valuable recommendations.

The second most important project type seems to be task automation, as 20 per cent of respondents claimed it was their number one motivator.

At the same time, businesses are met with known challenges, such as the lack of skill, understanding and issues surrounding data and its quality.

“Finding the right staff skills is a major concern whenever advanced technologies are involved,” said Jim Hare, research vice president at Gartner.

“Skill gaps can be addressed using service providers, partnering with universities, and establishing training programs for existing employees. However, establishing a solid data management foundation is not something that you can improvise. Reliable data quality is critical for delivering accurate insights, building trust and reducing bias. Data readiness must be a top concern for all AI projects.”