Over half of U.K. HR professionals (52 per cent) state that they’re already using artificial intelligence (AI) or are seriously considering implementing it. This is according to WorkBuzz’s State of Employee Engagement Report 2023/24 which is based on insights from over 400 U.K. HR professionals

Almost a quarter of the HR professionals surveyed (24 per cent) say that AI or similar technology was already being used within their organisation or would be implemented within the next 12 months, and a further 28 per cent state that they’re considering using it in the near future.

Steven Frost, CEO of employee engagement specialist, WorkBuzz, isn’t surprised that HR professionals are recognising the huge potential of AI: “Generative AI and in particular ChatGPT have been making waves over the past year, disrupting traditional industries and changing how we think about new technology. For HR leaders, AI has the potential to be transformative – allowing them to make smarter decisions, automate processes and improve productivity. But there is much still to navigate like overcoming bias, ensuring security and upskilling employees to leverage this effectively.”

Interestingly, respondents from traditionally ‘deskless’ industries with frontline workers such as manufacturing, construction, leisure and hospitality, aren’t quite as interested in AI. Less than half (49 per cent) report that they’re using it or are considering using it in the next 12 months.

Frost says, “It appears that HR teams in industries with traditionally deskless workers may be slower adopters. And although many commentators are predicting that AI won’t take jobs, workers might still be pushed out by those who know how to use AI, meaning all organisations need to adapt and embrace this next technology, otherwise they’ll risk falling behind.”

Gartner expects generative AI solutions to become embedded in current and new HR technologies in the next one to three years, with WorkBuzz’s listening platform already using AI for effective sentiment analysis.

Frost adds, “AI can’t be ignored or stalled, with organisations increasingly relying on its advanced machine learning capabilities to streamline everyday processes. The sooner this is recognised, the sooner HR leaders can transition their teams to an AI way of working.”