CBI sets out businesses’ tech priorities

Previously fringe technologies such as AI are marching into the mainstream. The CBI has encouraged UK businesses and the government to lead the way on adopting new tech and boosting productivity.

CBI calls for tech push in UK businesses
Artificial intelligence, Blockchain and the Internet of Things are the top three technologies that will move from the fringe to the business mainstream over the next five years, according to the latest research from the Confederation of British Industry (CBI).

Adopting modern technology

In the Vodafone-sponsored report, Disrupting the Future, the CBI highlighted the need for both companies and the government to pave the way for adoption of cutting-edge technologies by tackling the barriers that businesses are facing.The survey found that only a third of businesses felt they had the skills and capabilities needed to adopt AI technologies. The report added that Blockchain – a virtual record of transactions – could be used across sectors but would require regulator co-ordination to set clear standards, while there were concerns about security and privacy when it came to the Internet of Things.According to the CBI, the government should establish a joint commission early next year involving business leaders, employee representatives, academics and a minister, to “examine the impact of AI on people and jobs, setting out plans for action that will raise productivity, spread prosperity and open up new paths to economic growth”.
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Technology such as AI moves into the mainstream

Josh Hardie, CBI deputy director-general, said, “Much is made of new technologies and how they will impact companies in 10 or 20 years, but these are no longer ideas on the fringes and are shifting rapidly into the business mainstream.“The UK must lead the way in adopting these technologies but we must also prepare for their impacts. That’s why we urge the Government to set up a joint commission on Artificial Intelligence in 2018, involving both business and employee representatives, to better understand the impact on people’s lives, jobs and our future economic growth.“Artificial Intelligence solves problems. Blockchain changes how businesses exchange value. The Internet of Things unlocks big data. Companies of all sizes, in any sector and across the UK have a golden opportunity to benefit and lift their productivity.“Businesses that invest and innovate tend to grow quicker and get the best out of their workforce. But while these technologies are in action now, regulatory hurdles, security concerns and finding people with the right skills, mean that many firms are slow to adopt.“Gene editing, space tourism, self-driving vehicles, robotic limbs, floating farms, London to Sydney in four hours. Innovations like these will shape the course of the next decade and many will improve lives across the globe. It’s up to business, government and employee groups to make sure the UK economy leads from the front.”

UK determined to lead on new tech

Commenting on the report, Minister of State for Digital Matt Hancock, said, “We want the UK to lead the way in emerging technologies and welcome today’s report from the CBI.“Alongside our independent review into Artificial Intelligence last week, our ambitions are aligned on the need to embrace the opportunities of the digital revolution.“In our manifesto, we committed to establishing a data use and ethics body which would work with industry to answer some of the vital questions on the impact of big data and Artificial Intelligence, and so create the right conditions for digital businesses to thrive.”For related news and features, visit our Technology section.Relocate’s new Global Mobility Toolkit provides free information, practical advice and support for HR, global mobility managers and global teams operating overseas.Global Mobility Toolkit download factsheets resource centreAccess hundreds of global services and suppliers in our Online DirectoryClick to get to the Relocate Global Online Directory  

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