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Bringing A.I. Tools to the Workplace Requires a Delicate Balance

Move too slowly, and risk getting left behind. Move too quickly, and neither the staff nor the technology may be ready.
Catherine Pyle
Contributing Writer

Experts believe that AI will alter the work of most knowledge workers, shifting the skills they need and changing the staffing needs of most companies. While there is disagreement about whether AI will destroy more jobs than it creates, business leaders need to take advantage of the technologies today while preparing workers for the disruption that the tools present over the medium term.

Why it matters: Generative AI technology could speed up many tasks and increase employee productivity. MIT and Stanford researchers found that customer support staffs equipped with an AI tool that suggested responses resolved 14% more customer issues each hour on average. One possible conclusion from these findings is that the performance advantage gained through tenure has now diminished because a younger worker with AI can perform as well as somebody who’s had a few years of experience.

  • Companies are starting to make staffing decisions based on the anticipated impact of AI tools, with some investing more in junior staff members and going lighter on more expensive workers who have been around longer.
  • Morgan Stanley is introducing a new AI chat tool that all its thousands of wealth advisers are expected to have access to by mid-year. The tool, which is powered by generative AI, can answer questions, make recommendations, and create content such as text, images, audio, and video.
  • Generative AI will also help non-technical staff members in ways that don’t endanger confidentiality, like asking ChatGPT the best ways to organize sales data.

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