SMEs fear to be left behind in the move towards AI

As more and more organizations are implementing artificial intelligence (AI) and automation, there are still concerns over Small and Mediums-sized Enterprises (SMEs) getting left behind.

Indeed, according to a study by Opinuim, only 1% of small businesses and 2% of medium-sized businesses are starting to use AI within their organizations. However, around a quarter of SMEs are talking about AI and exploring the initiatives, with 18% of small businesses and 32% of medium-sized businesses are testing AI operations in a limited way.

On the other hand, around 75% of big businesses have implemented AI within their organization.

Hence, it was reported that SMEs are still having a hard time moving on with just experimenting with AI. One of the main challenges is to understand how can AI help these enterprises and enable changes in business models and practices. By doing so, businesses can improve the quality of their operations and spend less time on repetitive tasks.

Another challenge is the cost of hardware and software as well as of AI experts that can analyze and manage data. SMEs need to realize that implementing AI will lead to simple processes and quicker gains in the long run. Besides, there is also the obstacle of finding the right skills to adopt good AI solutions. Hence, businesses can try to upskill their existing staff by using online learning resources and low or no-code AI development products and services. Another solution could be to work with a consultant.

Finally, the final challenge for SMEs would be to develop a good and reliable data governance procedure. By doing so, the businesses will have clear guidelines for the responsible use of data and AI which include privacy, transparency, bias, and security.

 

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