As businesses embrace the adoption and integrate Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies in the business operations, it will certainly bring about various changes, including impacts on employees, both positive and negative.

The integration of AI in the workspace seeks to improve efficiency and productivity which creates the potential for possible layoffs. Even though this is not the first time an innovation has brought both progress and uncertainty in the workspace, the emerging concerns of AI displacing people are real and require serious considerations.

As the ‘New Employee’, AI has both advantages and disadvantages on businesses or employees. Some of these are as follows:



AI is promising to permeate innumerable facets of our daily routines at the workplace which will result in significant changes to the way many organizations operate – delivering momentous improvements in productivity and efficiency. This will revolutionize the way work is done. The following are some advantages of Artificial Intelligence (AI) at the workplace.

  • INCREASED EFFICIENCY: One core aim of AI is to bring efficiency at the workplace. This will be achieved by AI’s ability to automate repetitive and time-consuming tasks leading to improved productivity and efficiency. Apart from its ability to generate repetitive tasks, it can also work 24/7 without fatigue, thus no need for employing more hands for mundane tasks – achieving more results in less time, as well as processing data more accurately.
  • COST SAVINGS: Cost is a major component in any business venture and, therefore, any opportunity to reduce cost or eliminate same is quickly embraced. The benefit of efficiency for using AI at the workplace, especially for repetitive tasks, offers an obvious reduction in labour costs associated with those tasks. This anticipated benefit makes it attractive to explore other uses of AI with potential cost-driven outcomes.
  • DATA ANALYSIS AND INSIGHTS: One key strength of AI is its ability to process vast amounts of data and identify patterns faster providing invaluable insights for decision-making. This is a real advantage for businesses in making informed decisions and choices, while optimizing operations to improve outcomes. This is a significant breakthrough for organizations whose activities revolves data generation and usage for customer service and key business decision-making.
  • IMPROVED CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE: It is a known fact that customer service offers potential opportunity for companies to succeed in their chosen markets. This choice has not come without challenges ranging from less time spent on the customer; customers not attended to on time or customers unable to escalate their issues due to unattended calls. These acts and others have led to unsatisfactory customer services provided by companies. To find solution to these recurring problems, therefore, companies are leveraging the opportunity AI tools such as AI-powered chatbots and virtual assistants to enhance customer experience. This is enabling instant responses to customer enquiries and questions with personalized recommendations – with the potential to improve overall customer experience.



The adoption and integration of AI is not without disadvantages. Some of which are discussed below:


  • JOB DISPLACEMENT: As has been witnessed lately across the globe, AI’s capability to automate certain tasks has led to potential job losses and displacement for certain roles at the workplace. While businesses are excited about AI’s ability to efficiently take up certain repetitive tasks and deliver them excellently at a lower cost, this has, however, led to declaring the involvement of humans in carrying out those jobs obsolete leaving businesses with no choice but to layoff these individuals. The effect is the creation of social problems like unemployment. The caution, however, is for businesses not to view AI as a replacement, but rather job transformation. This way businesses can create new opportunities for employees to grow and contribute to the development of the intended benefits from the use of AI. As has been witnessed so far, some of the transformation AI has brought to the workplace has enabled automation of repetitive and mundane tasks, freeing up employees to focus on higher-value work that requires human creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. By reimagining the transformation AI is bringing to jobs, roles and responsibilities, businesses can create a harmonious environment where humans and AI can complement one another’s effort for more fulfilling outcomes.
  • LACK OF HUMAN TOUCH: Because of its inanimate nature, AI lacks emotions, empathy, and intuition, limiting its ability to understand nuanced situations or engage in interpersonal interactions which otherwise were exhibited by humans who did those roles. To maximise the potential benefits of AI, this glitch must be addressed as quickly as practicable to ensure the presence of those key ingredients that are necessary to creating those crucial effects that can only be derived from human interactions, as well as the emotional connection that must be generated by people in jobs like customer service, counselling and the like. The general perception is that AI is an alternative to humans and hence the push back from employees. Rather than seeing AI as a replacement of humans which is creating fear and anxiety among employees, businesses should encourage collaboration between humans and AI systems. No organisation can do without some amount of human involvement and interventions in its operations. AI should be positioned as a tool to augment human capabilities, providing employees with invaluable insights and support to enhance their decision-making processes and output ultimately. By leveraging AI as a tool, businesses can boost productivity and efficiency while empowering employees to do more to achieving business objectives and breaking new grounds.
  • SKILLS GAP AND TRAINING: As new innovation, businesses are required to invest in training to upskill or skill their employees in readiness to adopt and use AI effectively at the workplace. Due to its novelty, the skill gap with AI’s introduction is huge with very few skilled professionals available to manage this tool, thus it is anticipated that the labour market may experience a demand for AI professionals outstripping supply in its early stages. This can also affect cost of labour as demand for skill is likely to drive up hiring cost in the immediate period. Again, the innovation creates the need for talent to man the tool for effective rollout and outcome. The need to fill the anticipated talent gap, therefore, calls businesses to prioritize reskilling and upskilling their workforce. Employees can be trained in new areas that complement AI, such as data analysis, programming, or AI management. This allows employees to work alongside AI systems, fostering a symbiotic relationship rather than direct replacement.
  • ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS: Just like any other technological tool, critical to the myriad of concerns people have about AI is the ethical concerns to data privacy, algorithmic bias, and the potential misuse of these coupled with their unintended consequences. There has been the call to governments and businesses, as a matter of urgency, to address these emerging challenges to ensure that the benefits of using AI outweigh the disadvantages. This is necessary as AI has a huge social and economic potentials on countries. Some other ethical concerns raised about AI aside potential job loss range from lack of transparent communication about the purpose for its introduction, areas of the business to be affected and possible impact within the organization. These concerns can be alleviated to foster trust between the parties to ensure that AI systems are fair, impartial, and accountable to helping mitigate any negative impacts it may have on employees.
  • TECHNICAL LIMITATIONS: Core to its design, the AI systems are heavily reliant on the use of data which they are trained on and restricted to in order to function effectively. Their performance, therefore, may be limited in unfamiliar situations when faced with unstructured or ambiguous data. As a new innovation this limitation calls for developing a system that is adaptable and robust to surmount other foreseen challenges and developing the kind of AI systems remains a complex task currently.

While AI brings several advantages to the workplace, acknowledging its limitations and addressing potential challenges is crucial for responsible implementation and maximizing its benefits for both businesses, employees, and the markets. A careful consideration of the tool reveals that AI’s integration would, however, create a lot of new jobs in the near future. Thus, one of the ways forward to taking advantage of these opportunities will be for businesses to encourage their employees to upskill, reskill, or acquire new skills in AI for possible job transformation, ethical implementation, and collaboration between humans and AI. This is because employees are still essential in providing human-soft skills that AI may not easily do. By embracing these strategies, businesses can benefit from AI automation while ensuring the well-being and growth of their employees in the face of new technological advancements.



DENNIS YAW MATEKPOR HEDIHOR is an Associate with the Employment and Labour Practice Group of Sustineri Attorneys PRUC, a client-centric law firm specializing in Corporate, Transactions, Tax, and Disputes. Dennis welcomes views on this article and is reachable at