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One in three European companies has already invested in AI in the workplace

One in five employees is concerned about how this will impact their job

One in three European companies has already invested in artificial intelligence (AI) in the workplace. One in five employees is concerned about AI potentially taking over a large number of their tasks. These are the results of a recent large-scale European survey conducted by HR service provider SD Worx among more than 5,000 companies and 18,000 employees in 18 European countries. Although the role of AI is becoming increasingly important, European companies do not consider its use in HR operations to be one of their greatest challenges in 2024.

From our private lives to our places of work, artificial intelligence can be found everywhere and European businesses are all too aware of this. With this in mind, one in three European companies is investing in AI in the workplace. This is particularly the case in Poland (42%), Romania (40%) and Italy (36%). Companies in Finland (25%) appear to assign less importance to AI.

It is worth noting that European companies do not consider the integration of AI into their HR operations to present a significant challenge. Only 8% of the countries surveyed ranked it among its top five HR challenges for this year. Well-being (37%), recruitment (34%), employee retention (33%), flexible working (27%) and employee experience (27%) rank among the top five. Of all countries surveyed, France (12%), Germany, Romania and Sweden (11% in each case) see the greatest challenges in integrating AI into HR activities. It is also worth noting that larger companies consider this a more significant challenge than smaller companies. It may be that their size causes them to see greater challenges in terms of digitalisation and AI, although it would be expected that they would have the right in-house expertise to address this.

    One in five employees is concerned about AI taking many of their tasks

    Although most companies do not consider AI to be a major challenge, employees perceive otherwise. One in five employees surveyed is worried that generative and other types of AI will take over a significant number of their tasks. Not surprisingly, this percentage is rising – up to 35% among employees who already work with generative and other types of AI. However, the survey also shows that one in six employees currently uses AI in their work on a regular basis. Of the HR managers surveyed, 29% expect AI to make certain types of jobs redundant. More than seven out of ten (73%) employees who use AI consider this technology valuable for their work, stating that it makes them feel much more productive.

      Two in ten European companies uses AI in their payroll processes

      Which functions, capabilities and features are essential in payroll software? Of the 15 possible answers that could be chosen by HR managers, AI was at the very bottom. However, 22% of organisations indicate that they already use AI technology in their payroll process. Poland (33%) and Italy (28%) are once again at the forefront here.

        Within the payroll process, AI is most often used to monitor legislation and make adjustments where necessary, for example in the event of legislative amendments (39%), followed by the permanent validation of data (34%), classification of employees and other data (34%), and detection and correction of deviations (33%).

          Tom Saeys
          Artificial intelligence can create significant value, such as improved efficiency, faster customer service or interesting insights that can be used by HR managers
          Tom Saeys
          Tom Saeys, COO, SD Worx

          "Striking the right balance between technology like AI and human support is essential. We encourage and implement innovations for the benefit of our customers and co-workers. We are confident that this will not be at the expense of jobs, but rather that additional jobs will be created. Even so, it requires a different approach, continuous vocational retraining and a lifelong learning process, both for companies and employees, to tap into its full potential."