In a recent Gartner poll of more than 1,400 executive leaders, 45% reported that they are in piloting mode with generative AI, and another 10% have put generative AI solutions into production. This is a significant increase from a Gartner poll conducted in March and April 2023, in which only 15% of respondents were piloting generative AI and 4% were in production.
“Organizations are not just talking about generative AI – they’re investing time, money and resources to move it forward and drive business outcomes,” said Frances Karamouzis, Distinguished VP Analyst at Gartner. “In fact, 55% of organizations reported increasing investment in generative AI since it surged into the public domain ten months ago. Generative AI is now on CEOs’ and boards’ agendas as they seek to take advantage of the transformative potential of this technology.”
The poll included 1,419 respondents who participated in a Gartner webinar in September 2023 discussing enterprise cost and risks of generative AI. Results of this poll do not represent global findings or the market as a whole.
Executives Believe Generative AI Investments Outweigh the Risks
Seventy-eight percent of respondents believe that the benefits of generative AI outweigh its risks. This is higher than the 68% who reported this sentiment in the earlier poll.
“Executives are taking a bolder stance on generative AI as they see the profound ways that it can drive innovation, optimization and disruption,” said Karamouzis. “Business and IT leaders understand that the ‘wait and see’ approach is riskier than investing.”
Generative AI Investments Scaling Across Multiple Business Functions
The poll found that 45% of enterprises are scaling generative AI investments across multiple business functions, with 22% scaling across more than three different functions. Software development is the function with the highest rate of adoption or investment in generative AI, followed closely by marketing and customer service.
Generative AI Investment by Business Function
Source: Gartner (October 2023)
Growth initiatives were cited as the primary business focus of generative AI investments by 30% of respondents, followed by cost optimization (26%) and customer experience/retention (24%).
“Many organizations began their AI journey with an overemphasis on cost optimization and efficiency,” said Karamouzis. “Savvy enterprises have moved beyond this to focus initiatives on efficacy, quantifiable value and business agility in products and services. This ensures visibility, trust and synergy among stakeholders, and most importantly, alignment to business outcomes.”
Generative AI Hype Cycle Identifies Key Technologies Impacting Organizations
Gartner predicts that by 2026, more than 80% of enterprises will have used generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) application programming interfaces (APIs) or models, and/or deployed GenAI-enabled applications in production environments, up from less than 5% in 2023.
In the 2023 Gartner Hype Cycle for Generative AI three innovations are projected to have a huge impact on organizations within ten years which include GenAI-enabled applications, foundation models and AI trust, risk and security management (AI TRiSM).
Hype Cycle for Generative AI, 2023
Source: Gartner (October 2023)