86% of UK people managers believe AI tools can improve their role effectiveness

Visier, the globally recognised leader in people analytics and workforce solutions for people-powered business, today unveiled new global research that serves as a plea for help from managers who see major insight gaps in what they need to do their jobs well – and points to enthusiasm for AI as a key solution.

The research shows that AI is seen as a net-positive addition to the flow of work with an overwhelming 86% of UK (87% overall) respondents expressing excitement about the potential of generative AI tools to improve their role as people managers. Managers also expressed an overarching desire to make better, data-informed people decisions with 94% of UK respondents (96% overall) agreeing that improved access to people-related data would lend more confidence to their processes.

“Nearly half of the survey respondents said their current decision making process is greatly influenced by intuition and practical experience, rather than hard facts,” said Ben Harris, Vice President EMEA, Visier. “Many managers also said that accessing data is time consuming and difficult, so relying on instinct is an everyday reality for most. 

“It’s recognised that people managers in every sector are under severe pressure, and bearing in mind organisations are sitting on vast amounts of useful data, creating access to it – especially for those who aren’t data analysts – will help them with decision-making accuracy and align to overall organisational strategy. Through this research, managers said that better people-related data could inform their decisions on hiring, promotions, engagement, productivity and efficiency.”

As part of the research, Visier surveyed over 750 people managers in the UK, U.S., Germany, Netherlands and Switzerland. The results revealed a clear belief in leveraging generative AI-powered tools to become better leaders. 

Other key findings from Visier’s research include:

  • Adoption of AI is already underway with 52% of UK respondents saying they have already used generative AI tools to support their role as a people manager. This compares to 64% of overall respondents. Additionally, 59% of UK respondents already use it to help write performance reviews (in comparison to 49% globally). Likewise, 93% of UK respondents (81% overall) said if they had access to a generative AI tool that provided their desired use cases, 41% would use it multiple times a week.
  • Time savings created by AI would flow back to the team with 36% saying they’d direct their energies to team planning (UK 31%), and 30% on coaching their team. In the UK, the second highest choice was ‘working on personal learning and development’ (29%). 
  • Trust is, however, a challenge, highlighting that employers and employees want to work with tools recognised as safe and secure. Thirty-three percent of UK respondents have concerns about data privacy and security. Another 33% of UK respondents said their organisations don’t allow the use of generative AI tools, while 15% said they don’t trust generative AI tools. 

”Generative AI has the ability to democratise access, providing deep insights within the flow of work, and without the need to become proficient in analytics tools,” said Keith Bigelow, chief product officer, Visier. “Butits benefits extend beyond the delivery of data to act asa personal coach to every employee, nudging them to ever higher performance, delivering real-time insights in a way that just hasn’t been possible or scalable to date.”

He continued: “Managers’ approaches to decision-making should always involve a balance of data-driven insights and experience. The absence of either harms the organisation’s ability to align to strategy and ultimately maintain a competitive edge.”

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