"You have to unlearn old ways of functioning, learn AI and therefore transform the world through AI"

In conversation with BW CIO, V S Parthasarathy Group CFO & CIO, Mahindra & Mahindra Limited shares with us his insights about the AI transformation and how different sectors will be impacted.

?

Modern information technologies and the advent of machines powered by artificial intelligence have already strongly influenced the world of work in the 21st century. Computers, algorithms and software simplify everyday tasks, and it is impossible to imagine how most of our life could be managed without them. However, is it also impossible to imagine how most process steps could be managed without human force? The information economy characterised by exponential growth replaces the mass production industry based on economy of scales. When we transfer the experience of the past to the future, disturbing questions arise: what will the future world of work look like and how long will it take to get there? Will the future world of work be a world where humans spend less time earning their livelihood?  

In conversation with BW CIO, V S Parthasarathy Group CFO & CIO, Mahindra & Mahindra Limited shares with us his insights about the AI transformation and how different sectors will be impacted. 

 How will artificial intelligence in the coming years change the job space?

In the VUCA world, imagination is being reimagined every day. From an “unknown-unknown” scenario a few years back, we have transitioned to a “known-unknown” situation. The Known part is that Artificial Intelligence (AI) is here to stay and will become more important in the times to come.  The Unknown part is the ways it can impact each business and sector and the form it will take in future. AI can come as a tsunami of transformational and disruptive change or it can be transformational and encompassing. I believe it is the latter – transformational and encompassing. AI will bring more intelligence at the hands of every worker, things which were privy in terms of knowledge and insights will become common, thereby creating more value for each business than the disruption it will generate.


When industrial automation came into picture, there was a lot of uncertainty and anxiety surrounding mechanization. People were skeptical about losing their jobs. When self-driven automobiles replaced carriage driven by drivers, mass unemployment was feared. But that fear turned to be baseless. In the new era, there is a fear again that AI will take away our jobs. However, I tend to be half-optimistic and half-pessimistic. The pessimistic side of me says that the jobs, which can be directly done by robots, will tend to be replaced. From the optimistic view I also believe that the world GDP and world wealth will grow due to this and hence it will lead to new skills, competencies, new ways which were hitherto unknown.


What according to you will be the biggest advantage of AI in the job sector?

I can think of few major benefits of AI in job sector

  • Reskilling of workforce – AI will lead to rise of many new high-skilled jobs, also existing jobs will demand better skill set. This will give rise to a workforce which is technologically better than its predecessors. 
  • Rise in productivity – average businessman will become better equipped in terms of counsel and inputs, leading to wealth creation.
  • New areas and new avenues – In countries like India, entrepreneurship will rise to enable AI in a big way. People will discover new ways to enable existing business and engender new business models. 
  • Better remuneration - Automation will definitely lead to higher productivity and better efficiency, which will ultimately get reflected in the balance sheet of a company. Part of the profit made by organizations can be passed on to the workers, which will increase the minimum wage of the high-skilled employees.

What does AI’s growth mean for the IT sector?

To make all the other sectors AI enabled will be the prime responsibility of the IT sector. This the biggest boon for the IT. You have to unlearn old ways of functioning, learn AI and therefore transform the world through AI. That’s your opportunity and that’s your burden. 

Do shed some light on how various sectors like healthcare, real estate for example will change with the help of AI

No sector, no business will be immune to AI in future, even though the degree to which each sector will be impacted may vary to a great extent. Let me cite a few examples of how different sectors will be affected. While I am guessing some of this, the unknown-unknown will develop in much better and bigger way than we have envisioned today. I would say every sector needs to reimagine itself. 

Healthcare sector-

Just imagine that the healthcare industry is powered by AI. Healthcare can become better, more consistent, increase lifespans of people, provide better diagnosis and decrease error in healthcare and surgery procedures etc.

Retail sector-

AI could become counselor for retail purchases in future. It will sell without selling and counsel without constraints. It will support and enhance customer purchase decision just like a family member. 

Real estate sector – 

AI will lead to resource optimization in terms of power, water and even material utilization. It will make affordable housing a reality for everyone in the future and will lead to sustainable and green business model creation. 




Advertisement

Around The World