AI and IT: How AI Shaped the IT Industry in 2023

Written by Kate Lake on January 19, 2024

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AI had a significant impact on IT in 2023, in large part because its developments brought many AI functions from rudimentary to viable business assets. In a 2023 McKinsey survey, more than two-thirds of respondents said they expect their businesses to increase their investment in AI in the next three years. Further, the majority of respondents already reported seeing revenue increases related to AI. 

The following are some of the most significant developments that are contributing to AI’s growing role in the workplace.

1. NLP Powers “Smart Helpdesk” Support

What Is NLP?

Natural language processing (NLP) is the ability for computers to interact with humans by processing, interpreting, and responding to natural language input (i.e., someone speaking or writing in a normal, conversational way). 

Research and development in NLP technology has been underway for decades. It’s based on large language models, which are a form of recurrent neural network that first entered the scene in the 1980s. Since then, forms of NLP have made their way into popular culture in the forms of voice assistants like Siri, chatbots, more intuitive web searches, and others. 

With some of NLP’s latest developments, which were spurred by large-scale (and expensive) versions of previous efforts, we were met with functional, easy-to-use, and surprisingly human-like content generation capabilities. OpenAI was one of the first to pioneer this hyper-scale data mining method with ChatGPT, but other companies are employing this technique, and the sophistication of NLP continues to evolve. 

What Is NLP’s Role in IT?

These recent strides have fueled the development of several useful tools for automating the IT helpdesk process. 

IT teams are harnessing AI’s ability to analyze helpdesk tickets, understand user queries, and facilitate smoother communication between users and IT support systems with chatbots, virtual assistants, and other “smart helpdesk” tools. These tools can offer instant responses to user queries, troubleshoot and resolve common issues, and provide insights on helpdesk data (like most common ticket types, for example). 

When executed well, smart helpdesk tools can improve the user experience, alleviate IT’s workload, and shed light on opportunities for optimization.

2. Generative AI Is Driving Augmented Work 

What Is Generative AI?

Before 2023, generative AI was something the general population knew little about, and those who were aware of it usually saw it as more of a toy than a business tool. In 2023, however, generative AI and tools like ChatGPT have become household — and workplace — names. In fact, a recent Gartner poll of 1,400 executive leaders found that more than half of them are piloting or producing with generative AI at their companies.

NLP’s increasing sophistication accounts for one instance of this: written content generation. However, other forms of generative AI grew significantly in 2023 as well. From product design to image creation to code generation, businesses are finding ways to leverage generative AI in many aspects of their everyday work. 

GenAI’s Role in IT

The rise in generative AI and other AI tools — like data analyzers and scheduling assistants, for example — has driven many businesses to embrace the concept of AI-augmented work. 

With this approach, AI complements traditional work by taking over the tedious, time-consuming tasks to create space for people to innovate, strategize, and optimize. AI can also help gather and report on data in this process, which allows IT departments to continue to hone their processes.

Augmented work comes in many forms, but some popular ones in IT include:

  • Automating helpdesk functions.
  • Streamlining workflows. 
  • Helping write or completing code
  • Automating software testing.
  • Facilitating continuous software integration and delivery.

This work augmentation helps the IT industry automate repetitive tasks, increase efficiency, and enable IT professionals to focus on more complex and strategic aspects of their work. A well-automated IT environment allows each IT team member to work more strategically, either on a wider variety of tasks, or on more deep and complex tasks. 

3. Better Data Insights Drive Strategic Business Decisions

This increase in AI in IT environments has led to more (and cleaner) data, which provide better insights into current IT environments and their potential future state. IT departments are harnessing AI’s increasing sophistication with big data, data management, and predictive analytics to make more strategic decisions around resource optimization, cost and budget analysis, and more. This can help IT departments improve their overall efficiency and better plan for growth and change.

Further, AI is playing a larger role in security and threat detection capabilities. Machine learning algorithms are improving their ability to analyze patterns and anomalies to identify potential security breaches, strengthening overall IT security.

Note that there’s a flip-side to this development. Bad actors are also leveraging AI, and it’s been increasingly present in some of the most recent attack vectors. Phishing is one example: bad actors have begun harnessing the power of malicious AI content generators to develop convincing phishing scams. 

Pro tip: Phishing-resistant, passwordless authentication like JumpCloud Go™  can help combat the risk of increasingly sophisticated phishing attacks.

Learn More on AI in IT

We recently hosted two experts, Dr. Scott Gerard and Dr. Joe Wilck, to hear more about AI and ChatGPT in a session of JumpCloud IT Hour. Watch it on our Community page.

Kate Lake

Kate Lake is a Senior Content Writer at JumpCloud, where she writes about JumpCloud’s cloud directory platform and trends in IT, technology, and security. She holds a Bachelors in Linguistics from the University of Virginia and is driven by a lifelong passion for writing and learning. When she isn't writing for JumpCloud, Kate can be found traveling, exploring the outdoors, or quoting a sci-fi movie (often all at once).

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