RESEARCH REPORT

In brief

In brief

  • Artificial intelligence (AI) offers an unprecedented opportunity to support entirely new ways of doing business, unlocking new sources of value.
  • AI capabilities are advancing faster than the industry’s ability to adopt these new tools.
  • To take advantage, aerospace and defense companies must invest in reskilling their workforce and focus on AI pilots that have a solid business case.


Pivot to the new with AI

AI’s capabilities are advancing faster than the aerospace and defense’s ability to adopt them. As aerospace and defense companies seek to expand the range of areas where they will deploy AI, this rapid technology change presents challenges for wider implementation owing to factors including talent shortfalls and costs.

Ninety percent of executives identify the inability to combine the power of humans and machines as their top challenge for scaling digital proofs of concept1.

While 67 percent of aerospace and defense companies have adopted AI in at least one business unit—or are piloting the technology—only 19 percent scale many of their digital pilots and deliver superior returns on those investments.2

These challenges are made more critical by the trend towards transformation driven by new, as-a-service business models. Over 85 percent of aerospace and defense executives say they plan to invest in these innovative business models3.

AI will play a critical role in helping to successfully design and deliver these new business models. For example, Airbus Aerial is using AI to provide customized analysis to customers across a range of industries including insurance, public utilities and infrastructure. Global insurer Swiss Re is collaborating with Airbus Aerial to offer flood prevention modeling services that use AI to provide critical insights from drone-collected data4.

So how can aerospace and defense companies scale from AI pilots to production in order to realize greater operational efficiency and drive an improved customer experience?

Four imperatives to drive business value from AI

  1. Business model

    Learn from the as-a-Service business models of non-aerospace firms, including the Silicon Valley tech firms now venturing into aerospace and defense.

  2. Strategy

    Embed AI as part of a comprehensive digital strategy and integrate it into both existing and future processes.

  3. Organization

    Equip the workforce with AI skills in order to optimize the combination of humans and machines in every process.

  4. Investment

    Fund only those pilot projects that have a long-term business case and be diligent in scaling and realizing those projects.

AI reinvents aerospace and defense business models

Artificial Intelligence (AI) offers an incredible opportunity to support new ways of doing business that can unlock untapped sources of value. However, the aerospace and defense industry faces challenges to adopting AI successfully at scale. in this video, John Schmidt, Accenture Global Aersopace and Defense Lead, shares his views on the actions aerospace and defense businesses must take to drive value from AI.

AI Reinvents Aerospace and Defense Business Models

Accenture's video shares 4 key imperatives to unlock value from AI in aerospace and defense. See more.

View Transcript

Get the essentials in under 1 minute

Artificial intelligence offers major value opportunities. To unlock them, companies must reskill the workforce and build the right business.

Reinventing Business Models with AI

Accenture's video shows how AI is unlocking new sources of value with an unprecedented opportunity to support entirely new ways of doing business. See more.

View Transcript

John Schmidt

Senior Managing Director – Aerospace & Defense, Global


Marc Gelle

Senior Managing Director – High Tech Industry, Europe


Ajay Chavali

Managing Director

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