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New report suggests the UK is headed for an AI skills gap

According to a new report form Microsoft, the UK is facing an artificial intelligence (AI) skills gap that could leave British companies struggling to contend with rivals across the world. The research also found that businesses across the country use less AI than firms overseas, and even when they do it tends to be less advanced.

More than a third of business leaders in the UK believe that an AI skills gap will establish itself in the next two years, while more than a quarter claiming one already exists. This raises the question of how and why it has become critical to reskill staff and adopt AI systems within the enterprise.

“Every business today must be competitive, and this means automating certain processes and investing in others,” said Antonio Espingardeiro, IEEE member and a software and robotics expert. “In terms of information systems, we see a clear trend in automating certain office tasks, whilst some advanced AI techniques are being used in embedded software to be able to analyse high volumes of information and assist humans in making decisions. Naturally, some tasks are going to be replaced – tasks that are repetitive, difficult or painful for human beings to accomplish. As this is a complex process, a reconversion plan must be in place to train individuals to be more productive in areas where markets are just beginning. This can only be achieved if businesses and government work together.”

Espingardeiro believes that both businesses and government need to reconsider what it means to retrain people in the 21st century and approach AI differently. AI is an ‘enabler’ and training is an essential part of any job role. Workers will need to understand that AI will eventually be imbedded in their daily lives, enabling them to become more productive in their daily tasks. Likewise, businesses must invest in quality training and delivery, ensuring it is fast and accurate – retrain people where there is a shortage of professionals to attain bigger outcomes in the near future.

“The reality is that AI will ultimately help us to become a better society. As we automate we must begin to understand more about ourselves. All of these aspects combined will contribute to a better quality of life using AI,” he concludes.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by D Baker .

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