Artificial intelligence in the workplace may make you insensitive, and maybe even abusive, towards your real-life colleagues, a new report from Gartner argues.
To make sure this doesn’t happen, organisations will have to add digital harassment policies to workplace regulation, as well as train their AI to recognise, and properly respond, to malicious behaviour.
The argument goes like this: AI is increasingly moving into the workplace. By 2021, seven in ten organisations will have digital assistants helping their employees be more productive. However, AI can be quite frustrating to the employee, especially in the beginning, and that can lead to the employee becoming toxic and using abusive language.
“This can create a toxic work environment, as the bad habits will eventually leak into interactions with co-workers,” said Helen Poitevin, senior research director at Gartner.
Ms Poitevin added: “They should also clearly state that AI-enabled conversational agents should be treated with respect, and give them a personality to fuel likability and respect. Finally, digital workplace leaders should allow employees to report observed cases of policy violation.”
Another thing that the report tackles is how AI will tackle non-routine work. It argues that by 2020, one in five operational bank staff engaged in back-office activities will rely on AI for non-routine jobs.
“Nonroutine tasks in the back offices of financial institutions are things like financial contract review or deal origination,” said Moutusi Sau, senior research director at Gartner. “While those tasks are complex and require manual intervention by human staff, AI technology can assist and augment the work of the staff by reducing errors and providing recommendation on the next best step.”
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