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Summer 2017

This summer, the McKinsey Global Institute and McKinsey & Company released an 80 page discussion paper discussing Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the State of AI. The paper, titled “Artificial Intelligence: The Next Digital Frontier?” had some very interesting points that we wanted to share with you in this blog, but if you would like to read the entire paper, you can find it here.

In the paper, MGI surveyed 3,000 c-level executives across 10 countries and 14 sectors. These executives described themselves as “AI-aware” but only 20% of them had deployed an AI-related technology at scale or as a core part of their businesses.  These executives could be labeled as “Early Adopters.”

6 Characteristics of Early AI Adopters

The paper goes on to list 6 characteristics of Early AI Adopters:

  1. Digitally mature
  2. Larger businesses
  3. Adopt multiple technologies
  4. Adopt AI in core activities
  5. Focus on growth over savings
  6. C-level support for AI

Self Reported Current Profit Margin

The survey found that companies who aggressively pursue AI have higher profit margins, suggesting that AI can deliver significant competitive advantages.  But companies need to be fully committed to the technology in order to see the benefits.  Additionally, they must be mature in their digital transformation as the technology requires a strong digital foundation.

MGI goes on to predict that the early adopters will widen the gap in the performance of AI in the future but cautions that while the benefits are vast, now is the time to get the staff and skills in place to take full advantage.

In closing, it seems that this quote from the paper most fully sums up the current state of AI “In other words, the more companies use and become familiar with AI, the more potential for growth they see in it.”

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