‘Big Four’ company Deloitte has provided 75,000 members of staff access to a chatbot tool to help them carry out simple tasks quickly.
The company’s own chatbot, named PairD, is being introduced to company staff members in the UK, Europe and the Middle East. Developed by Deloitte’s AI Institute, PairD is an internal generative AI (Gen AI) platform designed to help its workforce with day-to-day tasks, including drafting content, writing code and carrying out research safely and securely.
Increasing numbers of companies are looking to further embrace automation as the future of work. The decision to develop and use a chatbot throughout the company is another example of how Deloitte aims to harness AI to its full potential moving forward.
Committed to closing the digital divide
Deloitte has recently launched the Global Generative AI Market Incubator in conjunction with the company's AI Institute. This aims to deliver early-stage proofs of concept and rapid prototypes in Gen AI.
PairD is able to create project plans, give project management best practice advice and suggest task prioritisation. The decision to roll out the chatbot to its employees in the UK, as well as Europe and the Middle East, is part of the company’s broader investment into AI and analytics.
Deloitte says PairD can be used by staff to answer emails, draft written content, write code to automate tasks, create presentations, carry out research and create meeting agendas. It is also the hope that this type of company investment will reduce time restraints and cost in the long-term.
Unlike other companies that have created chatbot tools in partnership with other companies, Deloitte has launched PairD solo. The chatbot was entirely created within the company’s AI Institute, highlighting how industries are increasingly adopting Gen AI to automate tasks.
However, The Financial Times reported that the chatbot could remain a work in progress, with staff having been cautioned about the tool potentially producing inaccurate information about people, places and facts. Users have been advised to use their own discretion and quality assurances when using the tool
Making AI accessible for all
Following 75,000 employees gaining access, disability equality charity Scope and its 800 employees will gain access at some stage in 2024. This will form part of a supportive initiative with Deloitte that focuses on understanding the barriers for those who are not digitally native and have disabilities. Deloitte is particularly interested in helping make AI access more inclusive and has plans to take learnings from the work with Scope to help other charities in a similar way.
The Scope partnership is part of Deloitte’s pledge to close the digital divide. Since January 2021, Deloitte has donated over 12,000 laptops to schools, charities and refugee groups to help tackle the digital skills gap and support people to overcome barriers to education and employment.
The company has also recently opened applications and welcomed 30 charities and social enterprises to join the third cohort of Deloitte Digital Connect, a programme that helps charities scale their digital impact.
Richard Houston, CEO of Deloitte UK and Deloitte NSE, said: “Gen AI should be available and accessible to everyone and businesses like ours must ensure that the adoption of AI promotes social equality rather than exacerbating existing disparities.
“But it’s not only about access to technology – it’s access to the skills to use it that will really create opportunity to help close the digital divide. We want to increase the accessibility of our AI platform and help Scope make full use of PairD to benefit the charity and the people they support.”
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