Almost half of businesses in the UAE are struggling to adopt artificial intelligence (AI) due to a knowledge gap on the subject, according to a survey of business leaders in the UAE conducted by the market research partner Vanson Bourne and sponsored by the technology company Avaya.
Forty-four percent of UAE respondents - higher than the global average of 30 percent - cited confusion between real-world AI and fictional AI seen in TV and movies as contributing to the knowledge gap, which is the gap between what individuals need to know to implement AI and what they actually know.
The survey also highlighted resource constraints as an additional factor hindering the adoption of AI, even for organizations who have successfully navigated the knowledge gap. Forty percent of organizations in the UAE claimed they are held back by resource constraints and lack the in-house skills necessary to facilitate the adoption of AI.
These challenges are likely the reason that 98 percent of UAE businesses conceded that their organization has work to do if it is to get the most out of AI. However, a majority of respondents did say that a failure to implement AI technology will cost their organization over the next decade.
“While it is encouraging to see the strong appetite for AI in the UAE, the fact that organizations are still struggling to separate the AI fact from fiction validates the guidance and approach we have been offering our customers,” said Yaser Alzubaidi, senior director — digital engagement solutions, Avaya International.
“We have often stated that organizations do not need AI — they need solutions to business issues. Applying AI for the sake of AI can be tempting. However, the main focus of any CEO looking to deliver best-in-class customer and employee experiences should be on utilizing AI, if — and only if — it solves a business issue,” added Alzubaidi.
According to the report, only 25 percent of UAE businesses have a fully implemented AI strategy.