Almost all (99%) IT decision makers in Australia, regardless of region or industry, recognise Generative AI’s transformative potential to influence change within their organisations, according to a newly released report from Elastic.

Three quarters (74%) of respondents’ organisations in Australia are eyeing increased investments in GenAI in the next 24 to 36 months. While a skills gap may continue to slow GenAI adoption, nearly four in 10 respondents believe it will eventually help upskill and educate employees. 

Australian respondents indicate that improving customer experience and engagement (48%) was the most likely Gen AI use case. 47% reported improving resource use, such as staff time with more than half (53%) of IT decision-makers saying search powered Gen AI could save employees at least two or more days per week. More than two in five (42%) said increasing personalisation was a likely use case.

However, the vast majority of organisations (95%) face data search challenges driven by a struggle to use search results effectively (48%), an inability to confirm accuracy of the search results (44%), and an inability to obtain responses quickly enough (40%). 

While 80% of organisations in Australia believe that effective implementation of Gen AI will offer a competitive edge, 72% of respondents express concerns about inaccurate responses from Gen AI as the primary risk when adopting the technology. 

Nearly all organisations in Australia (97%) face IT security challenges, from the ability to detect and respond to threats quickly to maintaining current and relevant security practices, but respondents also anticipate Gen AI will bolster security postures, such as improving automated threat detection systems (47%), generating training exercises (47%), and automating responses to common security problems (46%). 

Nearly all (96%) organisations in Australia report observability challenges including lacking the ability to quickly identify what is not working within their systems (54%) or building actionable insights into how they can improve are difficult to obtain (49%).

But nearly all respondents are confident GenAI would benefit from their observability postures, specifically to increase the ability conduct rigorous and regular data quality assessments using synthetic data (44%), enhance missing data handling (41%) and improve anomaly detection (39%). 

“In a little more than 12 months, the disruptive potential of Gen AI has shifted from reverie to reality, capturing the imaginations and budgets of IT and data leaders,” Elastic group vice president and general manager of search, Matt Riley said.

“While data may fuel this technology, search is the engine that powers its effectiveness. Unsurprisingly, businesses that adopt search-powered GenAI quickest – grounded by business context – will lead and uncover the insights needed to securely innovate, build more efficient businesses, and pioneer new customer experiences.”