Nearly 2 Out of 3 Small Business Employees Say AI Can Increase/Retain Headcount

Despite the headlines touting AI as human replacement, most small business owners and employees surveyed by Cox Business view the technology as a tool to strengthen and grow their teams.

Fifty-two percent of small business owners said AI enables them to increase or retain employees, and 65% of small business employees said the same.

Enhancing customer experience

  • Fifty-three percent of small business owners report AI had a positive impact on customer experience in 2023, and plan to use AI to support the customer experience in several ways this year:
  • 36%: Online order product/service recommendations
  • 35%: Online order placement
  • 35%: Website live chatbot
  • 33%: Customer service calls

Two-thirds of small business owners invested in AI for their company last year and 53% plan to invest in AI even more in 2024.

Currently, 75% of small business owners say they are responsible for their company’s AI implementation and operations.

And even though more owners and employees say their company did not feel much impact from last year’s IT labor shortage, 42% of owners that did see an impact, having experienced decreased revenue. The 43% of employees that saw an impact experienced:

  • 43%: Added job responsibility
  • 40%: Increased stress in the workplace
  • 38%: Longer hours worked

The data clearly shows that small and medium-sized businesses are embracing AI,” said Susan Anable, Phoenix Market Vice President, Cox Communications. “Leveraging AI to boost productivity and enhance the customer experience empowers entrepreneurs to take their business to the next level and prosper. With our generative AI practice at RapidScale, we are making it easier to realize the benefits faster for Arizona businesses.”

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