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Knowledge management is the fastest-growing area of AI spend

Knowledge management will overtake virtual assistants as the top AI use case next year, Gartner predicts, but AI maturity is still at least four years away for most organisations.

By Afiq Fitri

Knowledge management is the fastest-growing area of AI spend, according to IT analyst company Gartner.

Global business spending on AI will grow by 21.3% to reach $62.5bn next year, Gartner predicts in its latest forecast. This figure will be driven by growth in five application areas: knowledge management, virtual assistants, autonomous vehicles, digital workplace and crowdsourced data. 

While knowledge management was found to be the third-largest segment of the AI market in 2021, falling behind virtual assistants and autonomous vehicles, it will grow by 31.5% up to $7.2bn in 2022, Gartner expects, becoming the largest segment.

Gartner defines knowledge management as a "business process that formalises the management and use of an enterprise’s intellectual assets". According to software vendor Document360, AI can improve knowledge management through discovery – for example, by using text analytics to identify the content of documents; content creation, by advising users on creating accessible documents; and collaboration, by suggesting relevant documents when they are needed.

An earlier survey of CIOs and other technology executives by Gartner found that 48% have deployed AI and machine learning (ML) technologies within their businesses, or are planning to do so within the next year. 

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Despite this apparent interest, Gartner predicts it will take another four years for half of organisations globally to reach what its AI maturity model describes as the 'stabilisation' stage.

“The AI software market is picking up speed, but its long-term trajectory will depend on enterprises advancing their AI maturity,” says Alys Woodward, senior research director at Gartner. “Successful AI business outcomes will depend on the careful selection of use cases. Use cases that deliver significant business value, yet can be scaled to reduce risk, are critical to demonstrate the impact of AI investment to business stakeholders.” 

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