SINGAPORE: A recent survey has revealed that despite a growing inclination towards artificial intelligence (AI) investments, Singaporean businesses are grappling with significant data challenges that hinder AI adoption.

According to the “2024 Data Streaming Report” by Confluent, integration issues and a lack of security expertise within management are major obstacles.

The survey, which included 161 IT leaders in Singapore and 1,424 respondents across the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region, showed that 69% of IT leaders in Singapore anticipate increased investments in generative AI over the next two years.

However, these leaders also identified critical barriers that are impeding AI implementation. A notable 69% of respondents cited difficulties integrating new data sources into existing systems.

This challenge reflects the complex nature of data ecosystems in modern enterprises, where varied data formats and origins can lead to integration bottlenecks.

Almost an equal proportion (68%) reported issues with fragmented data ownership. This fragmentation often occurs when data is siloed across different departments or systems, complicating efforts to achieve a cohesive data strategy.

Furthermore, 65% of IT leaders acknowledged that their organizations lack sufficient skills and expertise in managing AI and machine learning (ML) technologies.

This skills gap affects the ability of businesses to deploy and maintain AI solutions effectively.

Suvig Sharma, Area Vice President for ASEAN at Confluent, emphasized the need for real-time data in maximizing the value of AI technologies.

He remarked, “Relevant real-time data is the fuel AI technologies need today to deliver maximum value in a timely, secure, and scalable way for organizations and their customers.

Outdated or ungoverned data is not only contributing to ineffective use of AI but also poor and unreliable business decisions.”

Despite these challenges, the outlook for AI investment in Singapore remains positive. With two-thirds of IT leaders forecasting an uptick in AI spending, there is a clear recognition of AI’s potential benefits.

Addressing the integration and data management issues will be crucial for businesses to fully leverage AI’s capabilities and drive innovation. /TISG