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Here's what employees in APAC think about automation and AI

With the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics expected to surge in APAC companies in the next few years, how are your employees reacting to this development?

According to PERSOLKELLY'S 2019 H2 APAC Workforce Insights, when it comes to automation, about a fifth of hiring managers and candidates across Malaysia (20%), Singapore (23%), Thailand (23%), Indonesia(17%), and Vietnam (22%) said automation is available in their company.

Whereas adoption of artificial intelligence was slightly less - Malaysia (7%), Singapore (7%), Thailand (15%), Indonesia(11%), and Vietnam (9%).

Despite the current low adoption rates, about half of all respondents across the five countries estimated that their companies will increase investment in automation/AI in the next two years - Malaysia (49%), Singapore (38%), Thailand (46%), Indonesia (44%), and Vietnam (41%).

While employees see the benefits of automation and AI, many are also concerned that the technology will eventually take over their jobs in a few years, or that the technology is to expensive to ever be worth it.

Benefits of automation and AI

Increase work efficiency:

  • Malaysia - 74%
  • Singapore - 71%
  • Thailand - 78%
  • Indonesia - 81%
  • Vietnam - 79%
Make jobs easier:
  • Malaysia - 72%
  • Singapore - 71%
  • Thailand - 77%
  • Indonesia - 80%
  • Vietnam - 80%
Increase productivity and enable better performance:
  • Malaysia - 73%
  • Singapore - 66%
  • Thailand - 71%
  • Indonesia - 75%
  • Vietnam - 76%
Improve the company’s bottom line:
  • Malaysia - 49%
  • Singapore - 38%
  • Thailand -46%
  • Indonesia - 44%
  • Vietnam - 41%
Concerns around automation and AI

Automation and AI are too expensive to ever be worth it:

  • Malaysia - 52%
  • Singapore - 45%
  • Thailand - 48%
  • Indonesia - 53%
  • Vietnam - 58%
Automation/AI will eventually take over their jobs in a few years:
  • Malaysia - 49%
  • Singapore - 38%
  • Thailand - 46%
  • Indonesia - 44%
  • Vietnam - 41%
Brett Maguire, Regional Marketing Director, APAC, PERSOLKELLY: "Automation and AI will infiltrate every industry across the region and employees are expected to welcome these due to the promise of improved efficiency and productivity. But not all employees are expressing optimism for automation and AI. It is imperative that companies in Asia proactively help their employees understand the value of automation and AI as a part of the workplace and integrate it effectively. That is why we have launched a framework to help guide businesses on this journey."

Are you data-ready?

Another tech related survey today revealed that business function, HR has yet to enter the leading band for data-readiness.

The Asia Pacific Data Readiness Index jointly developed by Tableau Software and IDC surveyed more than 700 organisations in APAC across five dimensions - people-related factors (skills and organisation), process, technology and governance - to determine their state of data readiness and indexed into three bands, leading, developing, and lagging.

It found that compared to other business functions, HR also scores the lowest on the process dimension, highlighting a need for better processes to manage data.

The report further revealed that only 20% of businesses are in the leading band with a majority in the developing (66%) and lagging (14%) bands. This puts a spotlight on people-related traits such as employee data skills and organisation-wide collaboration as key performance drivers.

Of the seven markets analysed, Singapore was revealed to be one of the most data-ready markets in the region with the highest number of organisations in the leading band, with 52% of the organisations in the leading band. This was followed by Australia at 49.5%. On the flip side, India has the most organisations lagging behind, at 30%.

However, by average DRI score, the island nation fell to second place, with a score of 3.52, compared with Australia's 3.54.

Most data-ready markets in APAC

#1 Australia: 3.54

#2 Singapore: 3.52

#3 Japan: 2.74

#4 South Korea: 2.69

#5 Hong Kong: 2.67

#6 China: 2.64

#7 India: 2.51

"Organisations in APAC are at an inflection point of their digital transformation. While many recognise the critical role data plays in this strategy, they are struggling to become truly data-driven," said JY Pook, Senior Vice President, Asia Pacific, Tableau. "In order to remain competitive and realise the business benefits, organisations need to adopt a holistic and tailored approach to drive data readiness in their organisation."

Photo / 123RF

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