PwC Thailand encourages businesses to responsibly use AI

Thursday 01 February 2024 11:29
GenAI adoption is expected to increase significantly in 2024
PwC Thailand encourages businesses to responsibly use AI

PwC Thailand has issued a stark warning for Thai businesses about the risks associated with using generative AI (GenAI). As more organisations leverage the power of GenAI to enhance their internal operations, explore new business models and generate more revenue, the firm has emphasised the importance of using the nascent technology responsibly.

Vilaiporn Taweelappontong, Asia Pacific Financial Services Consulting Leader and Consulting Lead Partner, PwC Thailand said a significant number of Thai companies have already adopted GenAI as they seek to boost work productivity, leading to workforce upskilling and data quality improvement.  

In July 2023, the Electronic Transactions Development Agency (ETDA), in collaboration with the National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA), revealed their research on AI readiness in Thailand's public and private sectors. They found that 15.2% have already integrated AI into their organisations, while 56.65% plan to do so in the future, and 28.15% have no plans for adoption. 

"This year, there will be a significant uptick in GenAI adoption as organisations focus on enhancing workflow and introducing the technology to employees through small use cases. They're also prioritising workforce upskilling and data quality improvement," Vilaiporn said.

According to 2024 AI Business Predictions, an article by PwC US, 73% of US companies have already adopted AI for at least some areas of their business practices. More than half of companies surveyed (54%) had already implemented GenAI into some business areas, just one year after ChatGPT's launch into the market. 

"GenAI offers benefits to every industry. So far, it has mostly been used for back-office operations, such as finance, HR, research, and report preparation. But it can also be leveraged for front office work that requires client interaction, such as chatbots, data searches, product comparisons or even giving advice on selecting the right products," Vilaiporn said. 

The need for a 'Responsible AI' framework

Vilaiporn explained it's critical that every business develops a framework for using AI ethically and responsibly. First, they need to understand the risks before they can work to mitigate them. She groups the risk factors into four categories for businesses to consider. 

  1. Data use risks: These include analytical errors due to low quality data or the AI model generating misleading and harmful information, which could infringe intellectual property rights.  
  2. Model and bias risks: This refers to the limitations or flaws in the AI model itself and the potential for violating ethical practices and producing discriminatory and biased results. 
  3. Imported data risks: Complex prompt commands or poorly managed data can be harmful to the AI model and can produce misleading information.  
  4. User risks: This refers to the potential dangers that arise when users employ GenAI results in an incorrect or inappropriate manner. 

"It's critical that every business has a framework for using AI ethically and responsibly. A good framework is divided into three parts starting with controlling adoption, design, procurement, or development of AI models, to ensure data is correct. This is followed by model validation to determine the criteria for assessing risks of the AI model. Finally, AI model management is needed to present results from the analysis before being used," Vilaiporn said. 

Organisations need to set clear guidelines around mitigating and identifying biased data and human bias, upskilling teams, the use of machine learning models, as well as setting criteria to assess potential risks. This will help prevent misunderstandings, improve data interpretation, and tackle cyber threats and privacy concerns. 

"Strong governance is required to ensure the use of AI is fair, accurate, reliable and protects privacy. This will help to maximise the potential of the technology and enhance human-led work, while bringing the greatest benefits to organisations and society," Vilaiporn said.

PwC's business prediction article provides six AI predictions that are expected to happen in 2024.

  1. The right AI choices will provide companies a significant edge.
  2. GenAI will redefine the work of leaders as much as employees.
  3. The moment of truth for trust in AI is coming.
  4. GenAI will be the 'missing link' for data.
  5. GenAI will transform transformation.
  6. GenAI will give rise to new classes of products and services.

"Pre-trained GenAI that aligns with business needs will help employees choose the right way to use it for their work. It will also increase the speed of searching for information, summarising documents and conducting basic data analysis. This will support organisations to make informed decisions based on comprehensive information, while also reducing costs and reducing work time," Vilaiporn said.