Salesforce [NYSE: CRM], the global leader in CRM, today announced new research from IDC detailing the economic impact of artificial intelligence (AI) on CRM. AI-powered CRM activities will drive new efficiencies in how companies sell, service, and market, ultimately expected to create more than $1.1 trillion in new GDP impact worldwide and 800,000 net-new jobs by 2021—surpassing those lost to automation.
AI has impacted nearly every aspect of our consumer lives, redefining how we engage with technology and each other. With the convergence of increased computing power, big data and breakthroughs in machine learning, AI is also poised to transform how people work. While some researchers predict automation driven by AI could impact 49 percent of job activities and eliminate around 5 percent of jobs,1 new data from IDC suggests AI could also augment and increase the productivity of employees, specifically in CRM-related fields. From predictive sales lead scoring to service chatbots to personalized marketing campaigns, AI could provide every employee with tools to be more productive and provide smarter, more personalized customer experiences.
According to the new IDC White Paper, commissioned by Salesforce,2 2018 will be a landmark year for AI adoption. More than 40 percent of companies said they will adopt AI within the next two years. In fact, by 2018, IDC forecasts that 75 percent of enterprise and ISV development will include AI or machine-learning functionality in at least one application. AI-powered CRM activities will cover a large spectrum of use cases and touch almost all facets of an enterprise, including accelerating sales cycles, improving lead generation and qualification, personalizing marketing campaigns and lowering costs of support calls.
“AI is impacting all sectors of the economy and every business. For the CRM market—the fastest-growing category in enterprise software—the impact of AI will be profound, ushering in new levels of productivity for employees and empowering companies to drive even better experiences for their customers,” said Keith Block, vice chairman, president and COO, Salesforce. “For companies embracing AI, it’s critical that they create new workforce development programs to ensure employees are prepared for this next wave of innovation.”
Beyond the Hype: Companies Turn to AI to Work Smarter
Key findings from the IDC White Paper on the economic impact of AI on CRM include:
- AI associated with CRM could boost global business revenues by $1.1 trillion from the beginning of 2017 to the end of 2021.
- This global business revenue boost is predicted to be led primarily by increased productivity ($121 billion) and lowered expenses due to automation ($265 billion).
- The types of AI companies are planning to use, or exploring, range from machine learning (25%) and voice/speech recognition (30%), to text analysis (27%) and advanced numerical analysis (31%).
- New jobs associated with the boost in global business revenues could reach more than 800,000 by 2021, surpassing those jobs lost to automation from AI.
- Underpinning the adoption of AI, 46 percent of AI adopters report that more than 50 percent of their CRM activities are executed using the public cloud.
- The United States is predicted to lead the way in new business revenue growth due to the economic impact of AI ($596 billion), followed by Japan ($91 billion), Germany ($62 billion), the U.K. ($55 billion) and France ($50 billion).
Salesforce Leads the Way in Delivering AI to CRM
With Einstein, Salesforce is removing the complexity of AI and empowering every Salesforce customer and business user with AI embedded across the company’s leading apps for sales, service, marketing, commerce and more. Salesforce is leading the democratization of AI for CRM, and its customers are among the early adopters who are driving this economic impact. In fact, Salesforce customers are expected to account for $293 billion of the $1.1 trillion GDP impact and more than 150,000 of those direct jobs by the year 2021.
Salesforce Trailhead Empowers Everyone to Skill-Up on AI
As with past technology revolutions, the rise of AI will change the employment landscape as more tasks are automated and new opportunities are created. AI for CRM will soon become a global economic engine for new innovation, business models and jobs. With more than 800,000 net-new jobs expected by 2021 as a result of new global business revenues, it is imperative that job seekers skill-up on AI. Trailhead is Salesforce’s free, interactive, guided and gamified learning platform, where anyone can develop skills that empower them to land a job in the workplace of the future. With the AI Basics trail, as well as Einstein trails, anyone can learn the AI and advance their skillsets. Since launching in 2014, Trailblazers have earned 2.5 million badges, which directly relate to in-demand job skills.
- Download a full copy of the IDC White Paper, Economic Impact of AI on CRM study at: https://sfdc.co/AI_IDCReport
- Learn more about Salesforce Einstein AI at einstein.com
- Like Salesforce on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/salesforce
- Salesforce Trailhead: https://trailhead.salesforce.com/
- Follow @salesforce on Twitter.
Findings from the report are based on IDC’s Economic Impact Model (EIM), which has been maintained since 2002 and takes inputs from IDC’s market research on IT spending, exchange rates, and vendor market share, along with public inputs such as GDP, tax rates, and overall labor force from other sources. The output of the EIM is IT company and employee counts by geographic region. In 2009, IDC added inputs for spending on cloud computing, percentage of IT resources available for innovation (the rest used on legacy system support and upgrades), and business revenue as a multiplier of GDP per country.
To develop an estimate of the economic impact AI will have on CRM activities, IDC analyzed business revenues from 2016 forecasted to 2021, third-party GDP, gross outputs and employment estimates from enterprises in 54 countries. IDC also surveyed more than one thousand enterprises from Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom and United States on how much AI could improve CRM activities in the first year of AI implementation, the timeline for adoption and what this improvement could mean in terms of efficiencies for a company in cost savings and new potential revenues.
For more information on the methodology of the study, please download the full study at: https://sfdc.co/AI_IDCReport
Salesforce, the Customer Success Platform and world’s #1 CRM, empowers companies to connect with their customers in a whole new way. For more information about Salesforce (NYSE: CRM), visit: www.salesforce.com.
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1 Source: McKinsey, “A Future That Works: Automation, Employment and Productivity,” January 2017
2 Source: IDC White Paper, “A Trillion-Dollar Boost: The Economic Impact of AI on Customer Relationship Management,” commissioned by Salesforce, May 2017