Published byIndeed

4 out of 5 UK business leaders say Generative AI will benefit employees, finds LinkedIn

Four out of five (81%) business leaders in the UK say Generative AI will benefit their employees, according to new research from LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network that recently reached 1 billion members.

The top ways that UK executives believe Generative AI will benefit employees is by removing boring, repetitive tasks (64%), increasing productivity (52%) and freeing up time for bigger and more creative thinking (59%). One in three (31%) also believe that the rise of Generative AI will create brand new roles at their organisation.

AI is reshaping the world of work

LinkedIn’s latest Future of Work: AI at Work report shows that AI is already reshaping the world of work as companies look to maximise the technology’s potential. ‘Head of AI’ roles have tripled globally in the last five years, and job posts mentioning AI have more than doubled (2.3x) in the UK in the last two years. In the UK, some of the top industries hiring for AI-related roles are administrative and support services, professional services, technology, manufacturing and finance. 

Professionals are keen to improve their AI skills - LinkedIn has seen an 80% increase in members watching AI-related learning courses on LinkedIn over the last three months, as well as a 60% month-over-month increase in Generative AI skills - such as Chat GPT, prompt crafting, and Copilot for Microsoft 365 - being added to members’ profiles since January 2023. 

Despite the rise in AI, business leaders and professionals agree that people skills will become even more valuable. 9 out of 10 UK executives agree that soft skills are more important than ever, and employees believe skills such as adaptability (48%), communication (42%), and problem solving (46%) will become even more important as work continues to evolve.

Ngaire Moyes, UK Country Manager, at LinkedIn, said: “AI holds huge potential to improve the way we work, and we’re seeing business leaders across the UK figuring out where it makes sense to implement the technology within their organisations.

However, it’s not just about introducing the technology, businesses will also need to ensure their workforce is AI-ready. There’s a real opportunity for Generative AI to remove the drudgery from day-to-day work, giving people more time to focus on the strategic and human aspects of their roles. So leaders that encourage a culture of learning, not just to boost AI literacy and hard technical skills, but to build great soft skills like leadership and problem solving, will create a more resilient and agile workforce.”

Adam Hawkins, Head of Search & Staffing, EMEA & LATAM, LinkedIn, says: “AI is reshaping hiring needs, demanding a significant shift in skills and opening doors to new possibilities. There's a tangible enthusiasm for AI among professionals, and we’ve seen a huge increase in our members taking AI-related learning courses. To capitalise on this interest, business leaders will need to provide their workforces with the tools and opportunities for learning and discovery, as well as guidelines on how the technology should be used. Recruitment professionals will need to make sure they’re well versed in presenting the opportunities around AI to clients, as well as to candidates - particularly as we know that applications to job posts mentioning AI are growing faster compared to those that don’t mention AI.”

Businesses can prepare their workforce for the changes ahead by: 

  • Mobilising employees on AI – The skills needed for jobs are expected to change by at least 65% by 2030 as AI accelerates workplace change. It will impact nearly every job in some way, so now is the time to start mobilising your workforce and equipping employees with the skills they’ll need for the future. To help, LinkedIn Learning has unlocked the most popular AI learning courses which are available for free until December 15, 2023.
  • Invest in soft skills – As employees start to develop AI skills and use the technology in their daily work, it will enable them to lean into the more human aspects of their job – like problem solving and strategic thinking. By fostering a culture of learning, not just to boost AI literacy, but to build great soft skills like leadership and problem-solving, businesses can help to create a resilient and agile workforce.
  • Implementing AI tools – Think about specific tasks generative AI can be used for, rather than trying to transform the entire process, and use clear metrics and KPIs to gauge what’s working. For instance, if businesses leverage AI to assist with candidate outreach as part of the hiring process - they can measure whether they have seen an uplift in candidate engagement, or whether time-to-hire has been shortened.

To help customers and members navigate the changing world of work, LinkedIn has introduced more innovation than ever before. Having recently announced a pilot of new AI-powered tools for enterprises, LinkedIn is also rolling out a new AI-powered Premium experience to a select group of Premium subscribers to help them unlock hidden opportunities, get smarter about important topics, and benefit from personalised career actions.