As we gear up for a new technological era in 2024, revelations from Freshworks' top executive trio - CEO Girish Mathrubootham, CIO Prasad Ramakrishnan, and President Dennis Woodside - hint at a revolution powered by the advancements in the field of generative artificial intelligence (AI).
CEO Girish Mathrubootham believes that in the years to come, generative AI will unravel connections previously unimagined, remarking, "Humans only look for things we recognise. But gen AI engines, like our own Freddy AI, do not have that bias." He draws attention to the immense transformative potential of AI, significantly impacting those who were typically excluded from technological advantages just as the fintech revolution did in India.
However, Mathrubootham is also aware of the hurdles on the road ahead. Noting various enterprises capitalising on the notion that using generative AI requires specialized technical skill, he anticipates a widespread increase in understanding and use of these technologies as the rewards generated are recognised. "Prompt engineers themselves are going to train language models so well, that they will soon enough be looking for their next big opportunities!" he predicts.
Complementing the CEO's perspective, Freshworks' CIO Prasad Ramakrishnan foresees AI exiting the current hype cycle in 2024. Valid use cases will emerge with AI propelling IT efficiency to new heights, leading to an overhaul of IT pros' decision-making processes. Ramakrishnan advises next-gen CIOs, "Never be a solution looking for a problem." He further anticipates a purging of shallow AI solutions, where simple SaaS add-ons masquerading as automation tools will be exposed, drawing upon a recent survey showing 71% of IT pros leveraging AI to support their workloads.
Ramakrishnan also emphasises the importance of tool consolidation and rationalisation in this age of AI, hinting at a continued drive to reduce complexities in the technology stack, especially after the pandemic-induced rushed and often suboptimal tool selection.
From a customer relationship perspective, Freshworks' President Dennis Woodside speculates that 2024 will demand business leaders strategize AI deployments to optimise customer relations, cost-effectiveness, and operational efficiency. He asserts that despite generative AI's adoption in enterprise markets, business-to-consumer companies are likely to harness its potential even faster. Woodside also ponders on the impending trend where AI interactions will be explicitly labelled to enhance transparency.
In perhaps the most intriguing prediction, Woodside envisages a unique form of peer pressure among government institutions as they strive to match the consumer experiences offered by public companies in adopting generative AI. Highlighting the significance of satisfying voters' expectations, Woodside concludes, "Those that ignore this pressure will stand in much starker contrast to the others."