Machine Learning: The Top Benefits and Barriers
October 12, 2018
Share this

Most organizations are adopting or considering adopting machine learning due to its benefits, rather than with the intention to cut people’s jobs, according to the Voice of the Enterprise (VoTE): AI & Machine Learning – Adoption, Drivers and Stakeholders 2018 survey conducted by 451 Research.

Despite being new, there is a healthy amount of adoption of these technologies already. Almost 50% of survey respondents have deployed or plan to deploy machine learning in their organizations within the next 12 months. According to Nick Patience, founder and research vice president for software at 451 Research, this paints a more realistic picture of machine learning adoption than is often portrayed.

Out of many possible benefits presented to survey respondents, almost half (49%) cited gaining competitive advantage as the most significant benefit they have received from the technology.

Improving the customer experience came a close second, cited by 44% of respondents.

Despite all the hype around mass job losses, lowering costs was cited by only a quarter of our survey respondents.

According to 451 Research, this demonstrates that AI and machine learning is an omni-purpose technology that can bring numerous benefits to organizations, beyond just lowering costs through increased automation.


Alternatively, respondents say the most significant benefit they realized or expect to realize are competitive advantages (49%) and an improved user experience for their customers (44%). This seems to indicate that decision-makers care more about the long-term impact that comes from gaining and retaining customers rather than a short-term fix that comes from cutting costs.


There are some barriers, however. When asked "what is your organization’s most significant barrier to using machine learning?" most cited a shortage of skilled resources as the top barrier (36%).

Skilled resources in the context of machine learning usually means data science skills. And a lack of those skills is reinforced further by the finding that data access and preparation is the second biggest barrier cited by survey respondents.

451 Research expects the lack of skills to gradually decline as a barrier as tools become easier to use and the population of users who can leverage machine learning expands. When all is said and done, organizations large and small will need more personnel to ensure their machine learning deployment brings the business benefits that matter most.

About Voice of the Enterprise (VoTE): AI and Machine Learning: This newest VoTE survey research report provides actionable data and insight and a broad, integrated view of enterprise AI/machine learning strategies and initiatives, their underlying business and technology driver, and the nature, pace and direction of AI/machine learning adoption. Data was collected via roughly 550 web-based surveys conducted with IT end-user decision-makers around the world from small, midsize and large enterprises in both private and public sectors.

Share this

The Latest

October 21, 2021

Scaling DevOps and SRE practices is critical to accelerating the release of high-quality digital services. However, siloed teams, manual approaches, and increasingly complex tooling slow innovation and make teams more reactive than proactive, impeding their ability to drive value for the business, according to a new report from Dynatrace, Deep Cloud Observability and Advanced AIOps are Key to Scaling DevOps Practices ...

October 20, 2021

Over three quarters (79%) of database professionals are now using either a paid-for or in-house monitoring tool, according to a new survey from Redgate Software ...

October 19, 2021

Gartner announced the top strategic technology trends that organizations need to explore in 2022. With CEOs and Boards striving to find growth through direct digital connections with customers, CIOs' priorities must reflect the same business imperatives, which run through each of Gartner's top strategic tech trends for 2022 ...

October 18, 2021

Distributed tracing has been growing in popularity as a primary tool for investigating performance issues in microservices systems. Our recent DevOps Pulse survey shows a 38% increase year-over-year in organizations' tracing use. Furthermore, 64% of those respondents who are not yet using tracing indicated plans to adopt it in the next two years ...

October 14, 2021

Businesses are embracing artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to improve network performance and security, according to a new State of AIOps Study, conducted by ZK Research and Masergy ...

October 13, 2021

What may have appeared to be a stopgap solution in the spring of 2020 is now clearly our new workplace reality: It's impossible to walk back so many of the developments in workflow we've seen since then. The question is no longer when we'll all get back to the office, but how the companies that are lagging in their technological ability to facilitate remote work can catch up ...

October 12, 2021

The pandemic accelerated organizations' journey to the cloud to enable agile, on-demand, flexible access to resources, helping them align with a digital business's dynamic needs. We heard from many of our customers at the start of lockdown last year, saying they had to shift to a remote work environment, seemingly overnight, and this effort was heavily cloud-reliant. However, blindly forging ahead can backfire ...

October 07, 2021

SmartBear recently released the results of its 2021 State of Software Quality | Testing survey. I doubt you'll be surprised to hear that a "lack of time" was reported as the number one challenge to doing more testing, especially as release frequencies continue to increase. However, it was disheartening to see that a lack of time was also the number one response when we asked people to identify the biggest blocker to professional development ...

October 06, 2021

The role of the CIO is evolving with an increased focus on unlocking customer connections through service innovation, according to the 2021 Global CIO Survey. The study reveals the shift in the role of the CIO with the majority of CIO respondents stating innovation, operational efficiency, and customer experience as their top priorities ...

October 05, 2021

The perception of IT support has dramatically improved thanks to the successful response of service desks to the pandemic, lockdowns and working from home, according to new research from the Service Desk Institute (SDI), sponsored by Sunrise Software ...