According to a new study from cloud storage giant Dropbox, British workers are increasingly opting to use AI tools to help improve their efficiency.
Its research found more than half (53%) of UK knowledge workers typically don’t spend more than an hour on productive work without interruption, highlighting the importance of productivity-boosting technology in the workplace.
As the ChatGPT preview one-year anniversary draws nearer, two-thirds (66%) of UK knowledge workers are now using automation tools “regularly.”
Workers are using AI to fill in productivity gaps
The most common reason for using artificial intelligence, says Dropbox, is to complete repetitive tasks. Many generative AI tools can take into account billions of parameters and sort through huge amounts of data in a fraction of the time that it would take a human worker.
Other popular reasons for deploying AI and automation include summarizing information and answering questions.
Amid a growing trend of return-to-office mandates, Dropbox also uncovers some of the key distractions affecting workers everywhere. At home, household chores and demands from others trouble many workers, while office-based workers claim that interruption from colleagues causes them the biggest headache.
Lost focus is said to be costing the UK $197 billion, while the US is far worse affected at an economic cost of $1.4 trillion. The figures suggest that addressing this could increase knowledge workers’ economic output by around 40%.
The overwhelming consensus is that AI tools have helped UK and worldwide workers to be more productive, improve the quality of their work, be more organized, and even improve job security.
This time last year, many workers started voicing concerns over job security, which was thought to be under threat by AI. It’s clear, now, that small injections of artificial intelligence into the tools we use every day are best thought of as aids that could improve worker satisfaction and contribute more cash to the economy.