Advanced Computing in the Age of AI | Sunday, September 24, 2023

Dataiku and Databricks Survey Highlights Booming ROI of AI and Future Challenges 

(Alexander Supertramp/Shutterstock)

The rapid adoption of generative AI appears to be having a transformative effect on businesses, according to a new joint survey released by Dataiku and Databricks.

The "AI, Today" survey report found over 70% of senior AI professionals report seeing a positive ROI for data science, analytics, and AI initiatives. Over half (54%) reported seeing at least a 2x return and 5% say they saw a return greater than 10x.

Ever since the release of OpenAI’s ChatGPT, generative AI has hit the mainstream with much fanfare. But Dataiku and Databricks wanted to know if data and AI professionals share the same enthusiasm. The authors also wanted to understand the larger AI environment and designed the survey to uncover insights regarding tech stacks, AI tools and services spending, and use case reach.

Those leading the charge with data, analytics, and IT functions will ultimately transform generative AI from a novel technology into a day-to-day reality in the workplace, the report states. Three in five survey respondents say companies need AI to realize the full value of their data.

(Source: Dataiku/Databricks)

Businesses are embracing generative AI, as 64% of those surveyed reported planning to use generative AI or large language models over the next year, with 45% already experimenting with it. Investment in AI resources is also heavy, the survey found, with 47% reporting AI tools budgets over $5 million for the next year and nearly one in five (17%) reporting budgets over $20M.

Dataiku’s Chief AI Strategist Jepson Taylor said AI and data science are delivering results, despite facing high expectations and unprecedented market attention.

“AI Pioneers are seeing clear bottom-line results from AI that would impress any CFO. Our survey reveals that where they need the most help is the right AI tools and platforms to convert their mountains of data into market-moving results faster than ever while protecting against potential risk,” Taylor said in a statement.

When it comes to AI adoption, those surveyed cited issues like data quality and speed of deployment as their top roadblocks. AI leaders saw cost and lack of business use cases as the least important barriers to delivering more value from AI, the survey noted.

(Source: Dataiku/Databricks)

The Dataiku and Databricks report also compared AI pioneers, or those seeing strong returns from AI implementations, to AI laggards, or those still experimenting with AI or seeing lower returns. The survey showed that AI pioneers were 62% more likely to report having at least one data leader in their C-suite (70%) compared to those at nascent organizations (43%). Those lagging behind were 43% more likely to say they do not have clear owners responsible for data quality, at 39% of pioneers versus 56% of laggards.

The rapid proliferation of generative AI has shown a need for caution, as AI models are capable of generating text and images that are inaccurate, biased, or harmful. The survey found that 55% of AI leaders reported that fears around AI are justified and that they’re more worried than excited about the future of AI. Additionally, the same percentage (55%) called for official regulation of AI.

“These findings demonstrate the significant interest in generative AI but also the accompanying challenges, from data access and privacy to regulation,” said Prem Prakash, Head of AI Marketing at Databricks. “As we navigate these challenges, our shared mission with Dataiku stands firm: to democratize data and AI, enabling every organization to build their generative AI solutions securely and cost-effectively.”