The use of artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming an increasingly important tool for companies of all sizes, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). In this context, IONOS, the main European partner for the digitalization of SMEs, has published a new study that shows that Spanish SMEs, with 74% of respondents, evaluate the use of AI most positively in various business areas, including customer service, image design or word processing as very or very positive. On this question, Spain is ahead of the United States (63%), France (60%), Germany (55%) and the United Kingdom (48%).
The study, conducted by YouGov for IONOS In these five countries, a total of 4,800 companies with up to 250 employees were surveyed and the perception of small and medium-sized companies on the use of AI in the business field, the risks, benefits and other considerations were analyzed at a given point in time that this technology is increasingly present in the business environment.
Spain, the country that sees AI most useful
In addition to its positive nature, Spanish respondents are also the ones who highlight AI the most for its usefulness, rating it as fairly useful or very useful compared to the rest of the countries. In this regard, you see it in topics such as search, Creating or selecting images (71%), copywriting (71%), web design and search engine optimization (67%), customer communication (58%) and sales (55%). However, in the area of human resources, for example, the majority do not think this makes sense (51%).
Spanish SMEs, along with those in the US, are also the first to consider this The quality of AI-generated content that meets your needs is fairly good or very good (60%).. At the same time, 39% of SMEs in Spain in the workplace say that they use AI from time to time (23%) or frequently (16%) and 62% consider that they have a good level of knowledge of AI (48% ) or very good (14%).
When asked if they are considering AI as an option for their companies, only 21% say they are already implementing it, and almost one in four would do so if the cost was less than 1% of monthly billing or if the takeover free of charge would meet their needs (24% also vote for this option). On the other hand, 27% of the SMEs surveyed said that they would not use it in their companies.
Security and error-proneness are major hurdles when implementing AI
When Spanish SMEs are asked about the obstacles to the introduction of artificial intelligence in their companies, 66% vote equally for the quality achieved and the susceptibility to errors as well as data protection and security. The lack of transparency regarding the sources or origin of the content also deters 63% of respondents in Spain.
On the other hand, the lack of knowledge about this technology and the cost also represent a barrier to its adoption in the company, with 60% rating them as important barriers.
AI simplifies and accelerates processes, but its effects are difficult to control
Small and medium-sized companies in Spain believe that AI has great advantages in business use. The most important point is simplifying and streamlining processes, which was chosen by 69% of respondents. This is followed by the development of creative ideas (65%) and cost savings (60%). The majority also believe that AI helps them with product development and innovation (60%).
The survey also shows what risks the companies surveyed see in this technology. 76% believe the difficulty of controlling the impact of AI poses a medium or high risk. 76% also say that misinformation is a risk, 74% classify it as a risk due to a lack of quality controls, including for the security and protection of data, and 73% believe that it is a medium or medium risk high risk for the data involves job losses. 71% of all companies surveyed believe that the use of AI should be regulated by the state.