Artificial Intelligence / Platform

62% of IT Leaders Say Their AI Systems Aren’t Ready – What Does This Mean?

By Sasha Semjonova

With AI having been at the helm of almost all conversations surrounding Salesforce and the wider tech sector in 2023, 2024 brings a new direction to the discussion: how will companies actually leverage it? And do they have the tools to do so?

According to MuleSoft’s annual Connectivity Benchmark Report, the passion is there to get things started, but the execution falls flat. 62% of IT leaders admit that their data systems are not configured to fully handle AI. We’re seeing data silos, skills gaps, and more clash with AI goals, which is already causing problems.

The Drive is There

It goes without saying that most tech/IT-centered companies are keen to make use of generative AI. 85% of IT leaders expect AI to boost productivity, so it definitely has its socioeconomic perks. 

For Salesforce, AI plays an important role within the interplay between historical and real-time Salesforce data. It can help teams with making those all-important data-driven decisions and get a definitive view of customers and clients, predicting their next moves, and offering them more tailored solutions.

READ MORE: Evolving Roles in Salesforce: How to Get Your Team AI Ready

Data, Data, Data

Despite the willingness to adopt AI, 81% of IT leaders say that data silos are hindering digital transformation efforts. Not only that, but 72% of IT leaders also said that they are stuck grappling with systems that are overly dependent on one another.

This disconnection of data can quickly become detrimental to AI efforts; successful AI strategies rely heavily on strong data integration in order to reap the benefits of improving operational efficiency, productivity, and employee and customer experiences. 

An over-dependent system isn’t a good case in any scenario, but with AI adoption, it raises challenges such as not being able to analyze data in a unified way, reducing the quality of the data, and a lack of collaboration due to the lack of connectivity.

“This data shows IT leaders are increasingly aware that their ability to operationalize AI and drive business and customer value will be dependent on their ability to integrate it with their existing systems to create new opportunities for growth.

Param Kahlon, EVP and GM, Automation and Integration

The Looming Skills Gap

Unfortunately, the struggle doesn’t stop at the data– it also lies with the people managing it. Automation is a golden word to many IT businesses, especially as they gravitate towards self-sufficiency, but the myriad of issues arising from AI adoption has left many IT teams inundated and overburdened. After all, it’s reported that IT team project requests have risen by an estimated 39% just in the last year.

According to the report, a staggering 98% of organizations said they were experiencing at least some degree of challenge with their digital transformation efforts. As we now know, integration and data issues make up a big part of these challenges, but it’s also reported that skills gaps make up a large part too.

This skills gap is felt tremendously from company to company, but it’s a bigger issue than people might think. According to a study by Red Hat, 72% of IT leaders across just the UK believe that AI skills need to be addressed promptly.

Closing this gap will involve strategic collaboration and upskilling, and in the sphere of Salesforce, the learning resources are only becoming more accessible, so it’s crucial that companies pay attention now to avoid the risk of being outpaced.

What’s the Solution?

According to MuleSoft’s report, APIs could be key to solving persistent integration problems and act as the catalyst for successful AI adoption for many businesses.

In their simplicity, APIs streamline data access and utilization to fuel growth by seamlessly connecting different applications and systems. Additionally, Salesforce reports that an estimated third of all revenue comes from API and API-related offerings.

Revenue isn’t the only marker to note here either; IT leaders report that APIs increase agility and promote self-service (54%), increase productivity (48%), and benefit business teams by helping them meet their demands (46%). Not only that, but the majority of IT leaders are already using them to build integrations.


AI adoption is going to be something that really sets companies apart from each other – there is already a substantial risk involved with falling behind. However, without the right strategy, many organizations will struggle to even get their feet off the ground.

It’s evident that your AI solution is only as good as your data, so starting there is paramount. Having strong integrations, a wide and clean variety of data, and upskilled and confident teams ready to implement will be the key to success.

The Author

Sasha Semjonova

Sasha is the Video Content Lead at Salesforce Ben.

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