While the extent of generative AI adoption may vary across companies, 64% of C-suite leaders said they will increase hiring — of both freelancers and full-time employees — as a result of the new technology, according to a survey by Upwork Inc.
The survey queried 1,400 US business leaders from senior managers to the C-suite with the C-suite most bullish on generative AI. Among all business leaders surveyed, 49% of business leaders said they plan to hire more freelancers due to generative AI, and 49% said they will hire more full-time employees.
Upwork’s survey also found that a majority of US business leaders, 59%, said they are personally embracing generative AI, taking advantage of tools like ChatGPT and Midjourney that have made its capabilities accessible to nontechnical users for the first time.
However, the report noted that despite widespread adoption among leaders, a disconnect between leaders and their workforces remains regarding the extent and impact of generative AI adoption. While 73% of C-suite executives say that their company embraces generative AI, only 54% of VPs, 52% of directors and 53% of senior managers said the same.
The disconnect likely stems from lack of training and understanding of how this technology will impact work, said Kelly Monahan, managing director at Upwork Research Institute.
“Businesses that want to bridge this gap should roll out a change management strategy that includes: communicating the expected outcomes for their workforce in relation to generative AI adoption and clear policies,” Monahan said. “It’s important that leaders address fear and uncertainty, and, perhaps most critically, encourage their teams to adopt a learning orientation.”
Upwork’s survey was conducted by independent research firm ClearlyRated in May.