39% in the UAE Employing AI Unbeknownst to Employers or Educators, Asserts Oliver Wyman
39% in the UAE Employing AI Unbeknownst to Employers or Educators, Asserts Oliver Wyman

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Well over a third of workers and students in the UAE are already tapping into the enormous possibilities offered by generative AI technologies, unbeknownst to their employers and teachers. This burgeoning utilization within organizations has been highlighted by global management consultancy, Oliver Wyman.

Generative AI refers to the category of artificial intelligence technology capable of generating a wide array of content types, such as text, audio, and visual. Some examples of popular generative AI applications in the GCC region encompass ChatGPT, GPT-4, Bard, and Synthesia.

At a rate of 39%, the UAE’s concealed use of generative AI corresponds with the worldwide average, with Mexico recording the highest at 46%, and Italy the lowest at 34%. Within various industries in the UAE, 45% of those in manufacturing, 38% in technology, and 33% in financial services have utilized AI without the knowledge of their employers.

The study into AI behaviors in the UAE, conducted in July 2023 by the Oliver Wyman Forum, represents the commitment of the management consultancy’s think tank to fostering leadership communities focused on addressing common global challenges.

The influence of generative AI technology on the future workforce will be considerable, and in many aspects, favorable. This is an undisputed fact, according to Jad Haddad, Head of Digital at management consultancy Oliver Wyman in India, the Middle East, and Africa. The pace of adoption, and consequently transformation, will fluctuate across industries and companies, influenced heavily by policies, actions, and a general willingness to adapt. Empowering individuals to use AI with intent will play a critical role in future growth.

The finding that 39% of employees and students in the UAE have covertly utilized AI is not unexpected, notes Haddad, as it has the capability, if managed properly, to enhance and accelerate processes, including monotonous ones. While it is vital to recognize and mitigate the risk factors, ignoring the technology within organizations will likely lead to a growth in covert usage, which can present significant security threats.

Haddad concludes by emphasizing the need for organizations across the GCC to contemplate assertively and vigorously the implementation of early generative AI adoption policies. Ignoring these emerging technologies is not an option, as they are already widely accessible.