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India ranks first in adoption of Generative AI technology across Asia Pacific: Deloitte survey

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Deloitte released the India findings of its Asia Pacific report Generative AI in Asia Pacific: Young employees lead as employers play catch-up today, highlighting India’s exceptional response to Generative AI (GenAI), with 93 percent of students and 83 percent of employees actively engaging with the technology. Surveying 11,900 individuals in Asia Pacific, the report positions India as a frontrunner among 13 countries for GenAI use and adoption. Emphasizing the need for employers and policymakers to adapt to this rapidly evolving technology.

According to the survey, the robust adoption of GenAI has been driven by tech-savvy, young employees, known as “Generation AI,” who are driving GenAI adoption, presenting new challenges and opportunities for employers as they adapt to these changes. Per the report, “Generation AI” is leading the way in saving work hours, creating new skill development opportunities, creating more sustainable workloads and increasing productivity.

The dynamic business impact of GenAI adoption, coupled with a projected 182 percent increase in daily usage over the next five years, reflects a dynamic trajectory towards deeper integration. Such optimism is echoed in the belief of 75 percent of Indians regarding GenAI’s potential to elevate Asia Pacific’s role in the global economy, with 83 percent expressing confidence in its ability to enhance social outcomes.

Key findings from the report

  • Generation AI leads the way: Students and employees lead the GenAI revolution across Asia Pacific, but only 50 percent believe their managers know they are using it.
  • Significant impact: GenAI could significantly affect 17 percent of working hours across Asia Pacific, amounting to almost 1.1 billion work hours annually.
  • Traditional technology hierarchy: This may be disrupted with the rapid adoption of GenAI in developing countries at 30 percent, which is higher compared with developed economies across Asia Pacific.
  • Talent benefits: GenAI users across Asia Pacific save ~6.3 hours per week, with Indian users saving 7.85 hours per week, enabling employees to acquire new skills.
  • Saves time: GenAI can support more sustainable workloads and productivity, with 41 percent of time savers believing this has improved their work-life balance.
  • Managing risks: Three-quarters of businesses are falling behind on GenAI adoption, according to their own employees.

Commenting on the report, Chris Lewin, Deloitte Asia Pacific’s AI & Data Capability Leader, said, “One of the most exciting aspects of working with GenAI is that across the globe, it is happening to everything, everywhere, all at once. What we have experienced in the last 12 months is that the challenges faced by our clients in Indonesia or India are almost immediately relevant to teams in Italy and Ireland. One key lesson is that the rapid adoption of AI will not directly eliminate jobs, but the impact will be felt by businesses that fail to adapt. Their employees, and in particular, talent new to the workforce, will be drawn to rival businesses offering AI applications that can redraw the future of modern work.”

Anjani Kumar, Partner, Consulting, Deloitte India, added, “GenAI has revolutionised the approach and future of work. Unlocking newer possibilities can help us do things faster, better and in a more creative way leading to more meaningful experiences for talent. To fully use this transformative technology, it is crucial to address implementation challenges and deepen our understanding of its capabilities. Despite its clear benefits, obstacles such as implementation complexities, risk aversion and knowledge gaps impede widespread adoption.”

“Leaders should use these technologies not only for efficiency gains but also to fundamentally reshape business models and processes. Overcoming implementation hurdles requires proactive engagement and a comprehensive understanding of AI’s capabilities among stakeholders” he added.

GenAI holds enormous potential to reshape our work and innovation landscape. With its promise of improved efficiency, enhanced quality and amplified creativity, businesses and universities stand to unlock unprecedented growth opportunities. Notably, 86 percent of Indian users report faster task completion, 85 percent note improved output quality and 83 percent emphasize enhanced ideation capabilities.

A big bang, short fuse scenario

To further unpack GenAI’s impact on the Asia Pacific region, Deloitte Access Economics mapped 18 industries in terms of the extent of GenAI’s impact—the “bang”—and how soon those industries will be affected—the length of the “fuse.” It is estimated that USD5 trillion of economic activity within industries will face a big bang, short fuse scenario.

Finance, ICT and media, professional services and education are the four industries affected, which account for an average of one-fifth of the economies of each market in Asia Pacific. This share is expected to increase as some markets shift towards service industries such as professional services, finance and ICT that face higher impact. These industries are also where over 40 percent of students who are using GenAI to start their careers, further accelerating the pace of transformation.

Three key actions for businesses to adopt

The rise of GenAI means that business leaders and employees need to think strategically and act proactively to respond to the rapidly changing environment. Based on the analysis of the report’s findings, businesses should take the following high-impact actions:

  1. Develop and implement a GenAI strategy that brings your employees on the journey.
  2. Empower employees to own their AI journey.
  3. Develop data infrastructure iteratively as needed to embrace GenAI.
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