Survey: Half of US Workers Would Hand Over Certain Tasks to Robots

By: Marie Donlon

According to a new survey, nearly half of American office workers would happily delegate work tasks that they dislike to robots and artificial intelligence (AI).

The survey, conducted by global software company ABBYY, questioned 2,000 working American adults about their feelings on topics like robotics and automation and discovered that roughly half of them would prefer to delegate tasks such as reviewing lengthy documents, data entry, attending certain meetings, checking and updating inventory and electronic filing to AI.

Conversely, about 27% of employees reported that they would not delegate any tasks to AI while 32% reported that AI could not outperform them on work-related tasks. Among the tasks that workers reportedly would not delegate to AI include speaking to customers, speaking to managers and supervisors and communicating with colleagues.

“The survey tells us that workers tend to procrastinate on admin tasks, while tackling communication work immediately. Staff are more likely to do value-added work right away, such as speak to customers, communicate with colleagues, attend meetings and take notes, while pushing off admin duties such as expenses and time tracking for a day or more,” stated Bruce Orcutt, senior vice president of product marketing at ABBYY. “With the advent of AI capabilities entering personal lives, workers are now ready to trust simpler tasks they hate to a robot. Fortunately, advanced cognitive technologies have entered organizations that can not only automate manual tasks but digitize and analyze unstructured or semi-structured content to help workers make valuable business decisions.”

The rise of AI in the workplace is making headlines daily with some predicting that AI could take over half of future workplace tasks. However, other reports suggest that AI will create just as many jobs as it displaces.

This article originally appeared in Engineering360.