A majority of CEOs see more value in technology than their workforce and nearly half of them believe that robotics, automation and artificial intelligence will make people largely irrelevant, says a study. According to Korn Ferry Global Study, two-thirds of CEOs are of the view that technology will be their firm’s greatest competitive advantage.
Leaders who took part in the study say that tech is becoming so central to their thinking and execution that it occupies 40 per cent to 60 per cent of their priorities on strategic focus, financial investment and C-suite time.
“Leaders may be facing what experts call a tangibility bias,” said Jean-Marc Laouchez, Global Managing Director, Solutions, Korn Ferry. The research also noted that 40 per cent of respondents said they have experienced shareholder pressure to direct investment toward tangible assets like technology. When asked to rank what their organisation’s top five assets in the next five years, the company’s workforce did not make the list. The top five assets named by the CEOs (in order) are: technology (product, customer channels); R&D / Innovation; Product / Service; Brand; and Real Estate (offices, factories, land).
The study noted sixty-three per cent of respondents believe in 5 years, technology will be the firm’s greatest source of competitive advantage. Around 67 per cent said technology will create greater value in the future than people will, while, 44 per cent said the prevalence of robotics, automation and artificial intelligence (AI) will make people “largely irrelevant” in the future of work.
“While the critical role and pervasive nature of technology in tomorrow’s workforce is clear, no one is saying people are going away altogether,” said Alan Guarino of Korn Ferry.