Is AI Coming For Our Jobs And Our Company’s Data? - Node4
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Is AI Coming For Our Jobs And Our Company’s Data? Node4 Research Reveals AI-Related Career and Cyber Security Concerns Across UK Mid-Market Companies

Findings indicate mid-market companies are laying the groundwork for safe and secure AI implementation and seeking third-party support to remove the most significant AI adoption barriers.

Derby, 27 June 2024 – Concerns that AI could replace existing jobs within mid-market companies are growing. According to Node4’s recent independent research, job loss fears top the list of worries that IT decision-makers have about AI use within their organisation. That number breaks down to 37% of CTOs, 29% of Heads of IT, 27% of IT Directors, 26% of CIOs, and 29% of IT Managers. It’s also a common fear across each vertical sector covered within the report, with a substantial number of respondents in mid-market finance (36%), private healthcare (27%), insurance (27%), retail (29%) and transport (25%) organisations feeling the same way.

Results from Node4’s Mid-Market IT Priorities Report 2024 also reveal respondents are clear about the potentially negative impact that AI could have on their organisation’s IT security:

  • 30% said that AI represents a top cyber security threat over the next 12 months
  • 28% believe AI could expose their organisation to new cyber security risks
  • 25% think AI could accidentally reveal sensitive corporate information 

This may be why respondents confirmed that dealing with AI-related threats is their top cyber security priority for the remainder of 2024—and why a lack of security is the top barrier to AI adoption.

Node4’s research suggests that most mid-market organisations intend to seek help from third parties in addressing their lack of security, as well as other key AI adoption barriers, including poor data availability and data quality. In terms of dealing with a lack of security, most respondents said they would rely on a mix of cloud providers (50%), retained consultants (40%), and MSPs (34%). A similar proportion said that they would opt for third-party support to deal with a lack of data availability (cloud providers, 50%, MSPs, 42% and retained consultants, 36%) and data quality (cloud provider, 57%, MSPs, 35%, retained consultants 32%).

“IT decision-makers identified potential job losses and cyber security risks as their two top AI adoption concerns,” explains Geoff Barlow, Product and Strategy Director at Node4. “At this stage, it’s sensible to take stock and understand not only these key issues, but how AI could also enhance your organisation. Our research suggests respondents are doing precisely that—and with great maturity and informed opinion.”

He concludes: “Respondents appear concerned that their organisations can’t keep pace with the necessary retraining to mitigate against job losses or evolve for an AI-driven economy. They’re also worried about the rapid rate at which new cyber security threats are emerging. My advice on both counts is to plan and prepare now. We know that great leaps in technology actually create new roles and opportunities. IT leaders should take a proactive stance by educating themselves and their organisation, evaluating the scope, scale and speed of their own AI adoption, putting the right processes in place to facilitate upskilling and engaging the necessary third-party support.”

To download a full copy of the report:

Report Methodology

The Mid-Market IT Priorities Report 2024 is based on a survey conducted independently and exclusively for Node4 by Censuswide. It reveals the views of 503 IT decision-makers across the private healthcare, transport, retail, finance and insurance sectors. The survey was conducted amongst Heads of IT, IT Directors, CIOs, CTOs and IT Managers in companies with 100-

1,000 employees, with an equal split for each job title across each sector. This year’s report also references data from the Mid-Market IT Priorities Report 2021/2022 and the Mid-Market IT Priorities Report 2022/2023. These reports surveyed 459 and 300 IT decision-makers respectively — both covering the insurance, transport and logistics, healthcare and online retail sectors.



About Node4

Node4 empowers private and public sector organisations across the UK to deliver positive outcomes through technology and innovation. Thanks to a broad portfolio of fully managed services including Business Applications, Modern Workplace, Cloud, Network, Data and Security, clients are empowered to reach their strategic goals.

Node4 fully owns its own a network of data centres, points of presence and operates best-in-class integrated tooling. Alongside strategic relationships with market-leading vendors such as Microsoft, Cisco and Fortinet, Node4 brings together the best options for infrastructure, platforms and applications, tailored to the needs of their clients.

Key to Node4’s success is its friendly, supportive culture, with Great Place to Work® ranking it as one of the UK’s Best Workplaces™ for three years running (2020, 2021 and 2022). Built on an ethos of exceeding client aspirations, Node4’s Exceptional Service as a Standard ensures a service delivered with knowledge, talent and passion.

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