Most Irish bosses expect to be impacted by AI

Accenture Ireland’s head of technology Austin Boyle said Irish businesses were seeing the value of AI as becomes increasingly “human”. Photograph: Shane O'Neill, Coalesce.

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The majority of Irish executives expect generative artificial intelligence and chatbots will affect their business processes, a new report from Accenture has found.

The Technology Vision 2024 report said 99 per cent of Irish executives believe making technology more human will expand the opportunities for each industry, while 97 per cent said AI capabilities are moving from assisting to acting independently.

Almost 40 per cent said the technology would usher in transformational change for organisations, with almost all businesses 99 per cent of Irish executives agree thatsaying the technology would push their organisation to modernise its technology architecture, and that AI agents would collaborate with other such agents to carry out organisational tasks.

Accenture Ireland’s head of technology Austin Boyle said Irish businesses were seeing the value of AI as becomes increasingly “human”. However, to fully take advantage of the new wave of innovative technologies, businesses need to fully adopt the cloud.

“Data is the fuel for AI, so if you don’t have your data right, it can’t run effectively,” he said. “Organisations have quite a lot of work to do to get the digital core right.” That digital core includes the cloud, he says.

But while Irish companies have been making progress in the use of artificial intelligence and generative AI, they are slower to adopt other innovative technologies such as spatial computing, which mixes digital content with the physical world, and body sensing technologies. According to the survey, 84 per cent of Irish executives think spatial computing will be able to provide a realistic alternative or enhancement to in-person experiences, behind the global figure of 92 per cent.

Companies may also have trouble persuading consumers of the merits of the technology. Only 36 per cent of consumers said they would be interested in using spatial computing to develop new skills, while less than 30 per cent would consider using it to shop.

Ethical concerns were among the chief worries, with 66 per cent of consumers saying organisations needed to develop responsible guidelines on biometric privacy and neurotech ethics and standards to help build trust among consumers.

Mr Boyle said Irish companies need to focus on that digital core and adoption of the cloud. “It sounds basic, but we’ve probably lagged a bit behind in that,” he said. “Organisations are now picking up on that at pace, because they understand that if they’re not in the cloud, they can’t avail of the processing and computational power, or even access some of the gen AI tools.”

Accenture’s Technology Vision 2024: Human by Design: How AI Unleashes the Next Level of Human Potential, was carried out across 20 countries and 21 industries, with 100 Irish executives and 1,000 consumers interviewed as part of the study.


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