PwC Canada today announced a major investment of $200M to enhance its Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities over the next three years, marking another milestone in the firm’s digital transformation journey. This investment comes on the heels of Azure OpenAI Service unveiling its latest feature, ChatGPT, a highly advanced AI model that’s already transforming the way enterprises innovate.
The centrepiece of this investment is a robust industry-leading partnership with tech giant Microsoft. Together, they plan to create scalable solutions using OpenAI’s GPT-4/ChatGPT and Microsoft’s Azure OpenAI Service. The collaboration will empower PwC to revolutionize its operational procedures and enable clients to reinvent their businesses, delivering superior outcomes through generating insightful data, enhancing productivity, and creating new products and services.
ChatGPT, since its introduction, has found applications in numerous scenarios such as content summarization, email copy suggestions, and software programming assistance. With its preview now available in Azure OpenAI Service, developers can integrate this AI powerhouse into their own applications, leading to improved bots, faster customer service, personalized ad copy, automated claims processing, and more. The strategic partnership between PwC Canada and Microsoft to utilize these transformative services signifies a monumental step towards reshaping business processes and driving sustained outcomes.
Upskilling and Retooling for a Digital Future
This financial commitment will be utilized in equipping PwC Canada’s 9,000-strong workforce with knowledge on AI tools and capabilities. It also includes an accelerated drive to hire more STEM talent. This is an extension of PwC’s ongoing efforts to digitally upskill two million Canadians by 2025, with a sharper focus on increasing the firm’s pro-bono capabilities to augment its social impact.
Chris Dulny, Chief Digital, Data, and Innovation Officer, PwC Canada, stated, “Generative AI has the potential to transform the way we live and work, and will reshape our clients’ business models for products and services. Our investment underscores our core purpose and strategy: to build trust and solve important problems.”
A Shared Vision with Microsoft Canada
Expressing his excitement about the collaboration, Chris Barry, President, Microsoft Canada, shared, “Through this new collaboration, PwC will utilize Microsoft Azure OpenAI Service to enhance their capabilities and offer cutting-edge customer solutions, backed by Azure’s trusted enterprise-grade features and AI-optimized infrastructure.”
Building Trust in AI
As part of its commitment to responsible AI, PwC Canada aims to utilize Generative AI in a safe and trustworthy manner. This includes driving governance and accountability through its Responsible AI framework, focusing on governance, fairness, transparency, explainability, and data security.
This investment strengthens PwC’s long-standing commitment to AI, with PwC Global’s capabilities in AI recognized by leading firms such as Gartner, IDC, and Forrester.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) promises boundless potential for societal advancement, but the benefits come with substantial risks. As organizations increasingly use AI for critical decisions involving sensitive data, understanding how AI operates becomes crucial. The key lies in ensuring accurate, bias-aware, privacy-compliant decisions while governing and monitoring AI’s capabilities. To tackle this challenge, global firms are turning to Responsible AI (RAI), with stages of implementation varying widely.
Mitigating AI Risks: PwC’s Journey Towards Responsible AI Implementation
RAI helps mitigate AI risks, preparing organizations for future regulations and ethical technology building. PwC offers a RAI diagnostic survey to assess an organization’s RAI performance and provide insights on improvement areas. This diagnostic tool could give early adopters a competitive edge that rivals may struggle to match.
AI risks can vary across sectors, use cases, and technologies, and PwC identifies six significant risk categories: Performance, Security, Control, Economic, Societal, and Enterprise. Performance risks are particularly concerning, as AI algorithms can inadvertently learn and mirror existing biases.
To address these issues, PwC developed the Responsible AI Toolkit. This customizable suite of frameworks, tools, and processes enables organizations to use AI responsibly from strategy through execution. The Toolkit tackles crucial aspects of Responsible AI, including Governance, Compliance, Risk Management, Bias & Fairness, Privacy, Security, and Data & AI Ethics.
PwC, in collaboration with the World Economic Forum, works towards forward-thinking guidelines for AI development across industries. It supports all stages of the RAI journey, including assessment, building, validation, and monitoring. The firm is also offering a free Responsible AI Diagnostic tool to help organizations ascertain their readiness to implement AI.