Will AI FIx Work: Microsoft Work Trend Index 2023

Microsoft Work Trend Index 2023 releases new insights on how AI will change the way we work in India


The 2023 Work Trend Index surveyed 31,000 people across industries in 31 countries including 14 Asia Pacific markets* as well as trillions of signals from emails, meetings, and chats across Microsoft 365, plus labor trends on LinkedIn. The data shows that the pace of work has accelerated faster than humans can keep up, and it’s impacting innovation. AI is poised to create a whole new way of working and organizations that move first to embrace AI will break the cycle — increasing creativity and productivity for everyone.

Bhaskar Basu, Country Head – Modern Work, Microsoft India, said, “As the nature of work evolves, AI promises to be the biggest transformation to work in our lifetimes. The next generation of AI will unlock a new wave of productivity growth, removing the drudgery from our jobs and freeing us to rediscover the joy of creation. The opportunity and responsibility for every organization and leader is to get AI right—testing and experimenting with new ways of working to build a brighter future of work for everyone. This will require not just investing in AI, but also ensuring that every employee has the necessary AI aptitude to thrive in the new world of work.”

The report shares three key insights for business leaders as they look to understand and responsibly adopt AI for their organisation:

1. Drudgery debt is costing us innovation: We’re all carrying digital debt: The volume of data, emails and chats has outpaced our ability to process it all. There is an opportunity to make our existing communications more productive. Every minute spent managing this digital debt is a minute not spent on creative work. 76 per cent of Indian workers say they don’t have enough time and energy to get their work done, and those people are 3.1x more likely to say they struggled with being innovative. Within Microsoft 365, the average person spends 57% of their time communicating, and only 43 per cent creating. Moreover, an overwhelming 78 per cent of Indian workers agree that they lack uninterrupted focus during their workday.

More than 3 in 4 Indian leaders (84 per cent) say they’re concerned about lack of innovation. The primary culprit disrupting productivity is inefficient meetings, as reported by 46 per cent of Indian workers who feel that their absence in half or more of their meetings would go unnoticed by colleagues.

2. There’s a new AI-employee alliance: While 74 per cent of Indian workers say they’re worried AI will replace their jobs, even more—83 per cent—would delegate as much work as possible to AI in order to lessen their workloads. Over 3 in 4 Indian workers would be comfortable using AI not just for administrative tasks (86 per cent) but also for analytical work (88 per cent), and even creative aspects of their role (87 per cent). 100 per cent of Indian creative workers who are extremely familiar with AI would be comfortable using AI for creative aspects of their job. Meanwhile, Indian managers are 1.6x more likely to say that AI would provide value in the workplace by boosting productivity rather than cutting headcount.

3. Every employee needs AI aptitude: Every employee, not just AI experts, will need new core competencies such as prompt engineering in their day-to-day. 90 per cent of Indian leaders say employees they hire will need new skills to be prepared for the growth of AI. 78 per cent of Indian workers say they don’t currently have the right capabilities to get their work done.

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