Guidelines Critical to Maximize Public AI Tool Business Value

Veritas Perspectives February 20, 2024

Artificial Intelligence (AI) was first coined back in 1958. Over the years it has transformed industries across the public sector, private research and Enterprise organizations. Today it has become an integral part of our daily lives.  The launch of OpenAI’s ChatGPT changed the game.  On a fundamental level, ChatGPT played a pivotal role in popularizing the terminology ‘generative AI’, or GenAI, and bringing it into the mainstream narrative. On a cultural level, it brought practical everyday uses for GenAI to the global public and on a scale we had not seen before.   Seemingly overnight,  GenAI was being leveraged for everything from booking holidays to writing emails.

This cultural transformation impacted how work gets done across the globe. Post pandemic, office workers often bring many of their own personal life hacks to their work place. Now, they are actively doing the same with public generative AI tools.

These tools have the clear potential to unlock a myriad of opportunities for employees and their employers. GenAI tools are often leveraged for assisting with mundane tasks like drafting emails, generating written content and providing quick information retrieval. Of course, they are also used for enhancing productivity or supporting various administrative functions too. However, while employees have already embraced it (from processes, efficiencies, creative bottlenecks – generative AI seems to have a solution for it all), businesses are all too often on the backfoot.

Research Results

New global research conducted by Veritas Technologies shows that confusion over public generative AI tools in the workplace is simultaneously creating a divide between employees. It is also increasing the risk of exposing sensitive information.

View Global Research | View International Research

More than 70% of office workers acknowledged using tools such as ChatGPT at work, with a third (31%) admitting to inputting potentially sensitive information like customer details, employee information and company financials.

Regardless of their disposition toward using GenAI, 90% said guidelines and policies on its use are important, but only 36% of employers currently provide any mandatory usage directions to employees.

Without guidance from leaders on how or if to utilize generative AI, some employees are using it in ways that put their organizations at risk. Lack of guidelines are also creating employee unrest, with 23% of office workers today not using these tools, and the same percentage believing their co-workers use of them at work is wrong and that their pay should be docked for doing so!

Neither situation is ideal. Organizations could face regulatory compliance violations, with increased employee dissatisfaction, while also missing out on opportunities to increase efficiency across their entire workforce.

So, what can employers do to get ahead of this? How can you ensure a company-wide understanding of the importance and positive business impact of generative AI, while educating on the correct and safest ways to use it?

Understand the Nuances and Potential Productivity Benefits of Public GenAI

Those who are using GenAI in the workplace said they benefit from faster access to information (48%), increased productivity (40%), automating mundane tasks (39%), generating new ideas (34%) and finding advice on workplace challenges (22%). However, corporations will face increased scrutiny, from external regulators as public generative AI has more capability the intentional or unintentional spread of bias and misinformation and inaccuracy.

Recognize the Value of Developing a Strategic Approach with Inclusive Guidelines

Increased regulation will require effective business risk-management strategies to include tighter controls on access and the way these tools process personal datasets. More than three-quarters (77%) of employees want guidelines, policies, or training from their employers on using GenAI within their organizations.
The top reasons given were:

  • 68% said to help employees know how to use the tools in an appropriate way.
  • 43% said to reduce risk.
  • 25% said to create a level playing field in the workplace. 

Seize Opportunities for Innovation

GenAI and tools like OpenAI’s ChatGPT are here to stay. The technology is providing great opportunities to help employees be more efficient with their daily work. Whilst its being embraced by employees, it is important to note that to make the most of what it can offer, businesses need to embrace it too.  

Our message is clear: thoughtfully developed and well communicated guidelines on the appropriate use of generative AI, combined with the right data compliance and governance toolset, is essential for businesses looking to stay ahead. Your employees will thank you and your organization can enjoy the benefits without increasing risk.

At Veritas, we are committed to helping you maximize the productivity potential of GenAI tools within your business, while maintaining critical compliance and security protocols. Veritas is here to ensure your data is secure, protected and governed through enterprise-grade data management and cyber resilience. Learn more about our AI-powered data security in this podcast: Unlocking the Future of AI, Security, and Veritas Solutions.

Sonya Duffin
Data Resiliency Expert
VOX Profile