Building the roadmap to India’s intelligent future

Indian business leaders are fast recognizing that the future of their business depends on their willingness and ability to embrace intelligent technologies. In a recent Accenture survey, 69 percent of Indian business leaders confirmed that adopting intelligent technologies will be critical to their organization’s ability to differentiate in the market. Also, 41 percent believe intelligent technologies will underpin every innovation they implement in the next three years.

Front runners in the race to intelligence

Many Indian companies are already using artificial intelligence (AI) to serve customers in new ways, boost efficiency and unlock new growth sources. In health care, Manipal Hospitals is using a cognitive computing platform to help physicians come up with personalized cancer therapies. Columbia Asia Hospitals is using algorithms developed by Bangalore-based Cardiotrack to predict and diagnose cardiac diseases, disorders and ailments. In apparel, Myntra is using AI to process fashion data to predict trends and automatically generate designs, without human intervention. Accenture in India has developed a digital personal assistant, or chatbot, named DiPA to make HR-related information accessible to employees, anytime, anywhere.

AI can help elevate human talent, and human supervision makes AI systems more accurate and effective.

An intelligence-fueled future

Companies have realized that when humans and smart machines collaborate, both perform better. Intelligent technologies give employees superhuman powers to solve complex challenges, develop new products and services, create better customer/employee experiences, and break into new markets. Machines do the heavy cognitive lifting, while employees spend more time on creative activities. The result—businesses that are smarter, faster and more innovative.

AI can empower workers in two ways—by giving them new analytical tools and by taking over routine tasks so employees have time for higher-value work— adding to both top-line and bottom-line results. According to our research, AI has the potential to add nearly US$1 trillion per year, or 15 percent of current gross value added, to India’s economy in 2035. AI is a new factor of production that can augment labor productivity and enable innovation, while driving growth in at least three important ways:

Enable Intelligent Automation

Use machine intelligence to automate complex, physical world tasks that require adaptability and agility--driving autonomous vehicles, for example.

Empower the workforce

Complement and enhance the skills and abilities of workforce.

Drive Innovation

The insights that AI systems produce can lead to innovations and act as a catalyst for industry ransformation. 

Are Indian businesses ready to make the most of AI?

According to the latest Accenture Research survey to assess the AI readiness of Indian businesses, 59 percent of executives plan to use AI to automate tasks to a large extent or a very large extent in the next three years. 84 percent intend to use AI to enhance worker capabilities. However, while the will is strong, Indian business leaders are struggling with transforming their workforce. The key gap is investment in training.

Employees’ willingness vs. employers’ uptake

Employees in India are willing to embrace AI with open arms. In our employee survey, 87 percent of workers vouch for AI having a positive impact on their work. 66 percent consider it very important to develop skills to work with intelligent machines. The next plan of action? Indian business leaders must tap their employees’ desire to learn skills to work with AI and other intelligent technologies.

Three key actions for business leaders

Indian business leaders have an opportunity to tap their employees’ desire to learn the skills to work with AI and other intelligent technologies. Our research points to three key actions.

Reimagine work for the age of AI

Teach people to work with intelligent machines

Human-machine collaboration

Sunit Sinha

Managing Director – Accenture Strategy, Talent & Organization

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