Artificial intelligence (AI) is a key tool for increasing business skills and optimizing productivity. According to the study Artificial Intelligence in Spainprepared by the consulting firm Ernst & Young, 89% of companies believe that AI will serve to improve their operations, while 74% value it for its qualities to attract new customers.
Expanding in environments where AI and data analytics are present puts companies in a regulatory bind. The lack of specific legislation on it and the legal limitations on its use (for example, in everything that affects the privacy of individuals) poses notorious ethical dilemmas when applying these digital models.
The AI ChatGPT, an automated language capable of generating content, is a clear example of what this new paradigm entails. Although the tools help automate certain compliance tasks, improving the efficiency and accuracy of the processes (helping to reduce legal and regulatory risks), ChatGTP cannot replace the experience and judgment of individuals in compliance matters.
Defining a new framework that integrates the functionality of artificial intelligence without forgetting the human factor is of vital importance. The IE-Elecnor Observatory focuses on how in a company the culture of regulatory compliance (known as “compliance”, by its name in English) must adapt and respond to the digital context. The Observatory offers a clear and precise vision of the way in which AI can be used to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the compliance and regulations in their fight against corruption.
Business ethics gain strength
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) policies have a very relevant weight in companies. Sustainability, equality, ethics and compliance are listed as major issues. The IE-Elecnor Observatory has analyzed the way in which companies and society are changing their vision of the search for results and benefits. Little by little, they maintain, more ethical elements will be integrated into the definition of the final processes and objectives.
In a market where, at times, it is difficult to compete in services or price, there are many companies from various sectors that have made ethics their differentiating element.
Jorge Ballester, director of the Elecnor Foundation
“Given the global socioeconomic situation, we can see that issues related to Governance (corporate ethics) are gaining more and more strength,” says Jorge Ballester, director of the Elecnor Foundation. “Business ethics and anti-corruption and bribery practices are priority issues for the future, according to the latest Barometer on Materiality, made by DIRSE & EY”, he concludes.
Customers positively value brands that show transparent management that respects the law and ethics. “In a market where, at times, it is difficult to compete in services or price, there are many companies from various sectors that have made ethics their differentiating element. Therefore, ethics and regulatory compliance are gaining weight as a competitive element”, says Jorge Ballester.
Bet on ‘compliance’
Applying a regulatory compliance model within companies avoids legal problems. Many companies implement ethical policies and practices in areas such as treatment of employees, environmental impact, and interaction with customers.
As revealed by the Study on the Compliance function in Spanish companies, 62.1% of the companies have a specific function in this section. In smaller organizations, this percentage drops to 38.9%, while in larger ones it increases to 92.6%. “From these data it can be deduced that there is a direct relationship between the size of the company and the existence of the function of compliance”, reflects Jorge Ballester.
Organizations are not overly explicit about the reasons why they do not have the compliance. Among the arguments put forward is the non-compulsory nature of having to carry out this function, not belonging to a regulated sector, ignorance and lack of resources, both human and financial.
Artificial intelligence, ethics and ‘compliance’
The latest IE-Elecnor Observatory delved into the way to combine artificial intelligence, ethics and compliance. The meeting was attended by Enrique Aznar, academic director of the IE-Elecnor Observatory for Sustainable Cultures; Richard Benjamins, Head of Artificial Intelligence and Data Strategy at Telefónica; Javier Camacho, expert in Ethics Consulting and professor of Ethical Management in companies, and Manuela Battaglini, expert lawyer in Digital Ethics.
One of the main conclusions is that artificial intelligence can not only improve compliance with different aspects within the company (such as cybersecurity), it also generates options to create new business opportunities adjusted to the requirements in terms of security. compliance.
Regulatory compliance benefits
Applying AI in companies offers great advantages. This is how Camacho points out. “This technology has come to stay. Trillions of dollars are being invested and its applications are already being used in companies, with two key factors: selling more and saving costs. One of the best known examples is the chatbotwhich facilitate customer service, or keywords, which help to generate content”.
This technology has come to stay. Trillions of dollars are being invested and its applications are already being used in companies, with two key factors: selling more and saving costs
Javier Camacho, expert in Ethical Consulting and professor of Ethical Management in companies
For his part, Battaglini points out the existence of a new model in companies far from obtaining profits as the only maxim. “In the long term, it is not sustainable. There must be a change in how we conceive benefits, beyond the merely financial. You can earn money ethically”, stresses the expert.
For Benjamins, the fact that the implementation and processes of AI are marked by the creation of tools for companies that commercialize this technology, establishing parameters that ensure all ethical aspects, is crucial. “The European Commission started to implement ethical guidelines a few years ago, which has changed the definition of artificial intelligence over time,” he recalls.