13 Dec 2021

Global Survey: The state of AI in 2021

This Global State of AI Survey, by McKinsey & Company, based on responses from more than 1,800 executives, shows that  AI adoption and impact is growing fast – and it isn’t set to slow down:

  • 56% of all global respondents report adoption in at least one business function, up from 50% last year, with adoption increasing most in emerging economies.
  • The share of respondents reporting at least 5% EBIT that’s attributable to AI has increased to 27%, up from 22% in the previous survey.
  • 67% of all respondents also saw revenue uplift and 79% saw cost reduction (up significantly from 44% last year).

And, the companies getting the most from AI appear to be professionalising and industrialising the AI development and deployment process:

However, no matter a company’s AI performance, risk management remains an area where many have room to improve:

  • Cybersecurity remains the most recognized risk among respondents, yet a smaller share says so than did in 2020, despite the rising threat of cyber incidents.
  • Respondents in emerging economies report lower recognition of many risks compared to those in developed economies (although numbers are low here as well).