Artificial intelligence has been around for quite a while, but not exactly the way we know it today. The technologies that drive AI were often inaccessible due to cost, practicality, and in some cases the lack of application. However, with the ways that we can seamlessly integrate AI into everyday tasks, it has become a major part of today’s work and the future of work.
AI is simplifying the way we work. Automating mundane tasks, conserving energy to create a greener working environment, and assisting employees in maintaining and improving the quality of work are just a handful of ways AI is being used.
The AI industry is also helping reduce office vacancies in some markets. San Francisco is quickly becoming the hub of AI and contributing to vacant office space. AI is having an impact far beyond how we work. It’s having an impact on jobs, communities, and the commercial real estate market.
What is AI?
AI isn’t an idea or technology that should be feared. It’s an invaluable tool that when used correctly, is hard to replace. The technology isn’t used in the same way by everybody, but the idea is the same. Machines are able to perform tasks, assist employees, and improve the quality of work.
The way companies use AI really depends on the scope of work. Some companies use it to reduce extensive data sets that can be quickly analyzed, monitor and track employees, or increase security measures for sensitive information. The applications and possibilities are endless and as we realize the benefits and uses further, the future of work will continue to evolve.
AI in Emerging Markets
San Francisco has become a destination for AI companies. The support for AI-driven companies is overwhelming in the Bay Area. Microsoft announced a project in September that will revolutionize the way startups operate. This project by Microsoft is the AI Co-Innovation Lab.
The AI Co-Innovation Lab is set to be a resource for AI-based companies. The goal is to help companies of all sizes develop, integrate, and see their AI ideas come to fruition. This isn’t the first of its kind in the U.S. but the impact it will have on local business is something that San Francisco hasn’t seen itself. Along with Microsoft’s AI Co-Innovation lab aimed at helping startups, there have been a couple of other large companies that have made their impact on San Franciso.
What does this Mean for Office Vacancies?
One might think the large investments into the Bay Area are helping right the struggles we’ve seen in commercial real estate markets across the country. In the wake of the 2020 pandemic and the mass adoption of remote and hybrid work, there have been massive jumps in office vacancies. The Atlantic offers insight into how empty office buildings can lead to our next crisis. Although many large companies have pushed back on this model, some companies have since realized the benefits of hybrid and remote work. The companies that are embracing return-to-work initiatives – even if it’s occasional attendance – aren’t translating into rising occupancy rates.
The Microsoft innovation lab and other investments into the area aren’t necessarily an immediate answer for San Francisco. These innovative businesses aren’t all occupying existing office space. The San Francisco Standard talks about how the road to recovery might be longer than it appears. New campuses, complexes, and office buildings might lead to a negative effect and a rocky start to fixing what has become a problem for many. However, they might be in a better position than most.
London Breed, the Mayor of San Francisco has named the area the AI Capital of the World. This along with the massive investments into the area has the potential to trigger a pilgrimage for AI companies from all around, and that is how office vacancies drop. This isn’t an overnight solution to the rising office vacancy, but as larger companies grow and invest return work rates are on the rise.
What Other Markets Can Learn from San Francisco
While other cities and commercial real estate markets might love to be the self-proclaimed industry capital of the world, they’ve missed the boat for one of the fastest-growing spaces. However, there’s a lot other markets can learn from what San Francisco is doing with AI.
San Francisco is becoming a model for what AI can do for businesses and markets. Businesses can turn to them to watch how AI is revolutionizing business models, the future of work, and how they can replicate these practices. Right now, a lot of companies across the country are in a state of flux. There’s an ongoing power struggle between companies and employees with their return-to-work initiatives and companies are trying to find the most cost-effective to continue their day-to-day operations. You can’t help but wonder if San Francisco and their relationship with AI can pave the way.
How effective AI is in San Francisco can be the model of how successful it can be across the country. The more effective the technology the more valuable it will become to employees, companies, and local economies. Three years later we’re still seeing the lasting effects the 2020 pandemic has had on everything from our personal lives to commercial real estate. San Francisco and AI might be the duo we need to guide and alter the future of work.
How AI is Changing the Workplace
AI’s ability to analyze data and optimize performance is making it possible to bridge the gap between companies and employees. This can help companies and employees compromise when it comes to building effective return-to-work initiatives. Companies are finding ways to accommodate employees by giving workers what they have come to need in their offices. However, AI is also helping companies analyze employee behavior and the efficiency of remote employees. The concerns about inefficiency and low productivity are being addressed by companies through the use of AI. Because of these technologies, we’re finding the real answers.
There’s still a struggle when it comes to determining what companies should do, and it isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer. It depends on the type of work, the size of the workforce, and the company’s resources. As other markets work toward developing the right return-to-work initiatives, eyes are on the AI Capital of the World. What San Francisco and AI companies are proving is that the future of work is and will continue to evolve.
Learn more about how you can incorporate AI in the workplace to create an intelligent workplace!