UK Business Leaders Losing Sleep Over Tech Change, BT Study Finds

A BT report finds 86% of UK business leaders experience "tech-related stress" due to AI and cybersecurity concerns, affecting their sleep. The report estimates this stress could cost the UK economy £11.79 billion by 2030 if not addressed.

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UK Business Leaders Losing Sleep Over Tech Change, BT Study Finds

UK Business Leaders Losing Sleep Over Tech Change, BT Study Finds

A recent report commissioned by BT has revealed that 86% of UK business, leaders, stressing, pace, technological, change are experiencing "tech-related stress," particularly related to AI and cybersecurity, which is affecting their sleep. This phenomenon, termed "bytmares," could lead to "tech paralysis" and cost the economy £11.79 billion by 2030 if not addressed.

Why this matters: The findings of this report have significant implications for the UK's economic growth and competitiveness, as the inability to adapt to technological change can hinder innovation and productivity. Moreover, the potential cost of £11.79 billion by 2030 underscores the need for businesses and policymakers to address these concerns and invest in digital transformation.

The survey, conducted by Censuswide, found that 88% of businesses are investing in new technology this year, with a 31% year-on-year increase in tech investment. However, 62% of business leaders recognize that digital and tech transformation is critical to their company's survival, but 59% worry about the future of their business due to the rapid pace of technological change.

Cybersecurity is seen as the biggest technological threat to businesses, followed by AI, with concerns including data privacy and security, quality and reliability, and existential threats. "Today, every business is a digital business – and our research shows that the pace of change is taking its toll," said Bas Burger, CEO – Business at BT.

The report highlights the importance of addressing tech-related stress, particularly in the areas of AI and cybersecurity. To help businesses navigate these challenges, BT is teaming up with Sarah Willingham, former Dragon and meditation expert, and Izzy Judd to create The Business Reboot, a series of tech-inspired guided meditations. "Dealing with change and uncertainty are two of the hardest things about running a business, and I've always found meditation really helps with that," said Willingham.

The potential consequences of not addressing these concerns are significant, with the report estimating that 104,000 British businesses may defer investment in tech transformation due to stress, potentially costing the economy £11.79 billion by 2030. A separate report from Verizon found that security vulnerability exploitation nearly tripled in 2023, driven by attacks targeting unpatched systems and devices, further underscoring the importance of addressing cybersecurity issues.

As UK businesses grapple with the rapid pace of technological change, the BT report serves as a stark reminder of the need to prioritize digital transformation while also managing the associated stresses and risks. With initiatives like The Business Reboot, companies can find support in navigating the complex landscape of AI, cybersecurity, and other emerging technologies, ensuring they can reap the benefits of innovation without compromising their well-being or bottom line.

Key Takeaways

  • 86% of UK business leaders experience "tech-related stress" due to AI and cybersecurity concerns.
  • This "tech-related stress" could cost the UK economy £11.79 billion by 2030 if not addressed.
  • 62% of business leaders see digital transformation as critical to their company's survival.
  • Cybersecurity is the biggest technological threat to businesses, followed by AI.
  • BT is launching "The Business Reboot" to help businesses manage tech-related stress through guided meditations.