Canadian CEOs say AI is Fueling New Job Creation and Risk-taking to Compete: IBM Study

  • More than half of Canadian CEOs say they are hiring for positions that did not exist last year due to generative AI, but struggle to fill key technology roles.
  • 72% of Canadian CEOs reveal they will take on more risk than their competition to outcompete.
  • 62% of Canadian CEOs say the productivity gains from automation are so great they are willing to accept more risk.

Markham, ON (May 29, 2024) – A study by the IBM Institute for Business Value has found that AI is fueling new job creation and risk-taking among surveyed Canadian CEOs as they prioritize generative AI to maintain and enhance their competitive edge in the global market while simultaneously transforming their workforce to meet new demands.

Canada was one of 30 countries included in this annual global IBM study of 3,000 CEOs. Key themes dominating the Canadian findings include the willingness of CEOs to accept more risk in an increasingly competitive landscape driven by generative AI. In fact, 64% of Canadian CEOs believe that competitive advantage depends on having the most advanced generative AI capabilities, higher than the global average of 59%. Additionally, 62% of Canadian CEOs say the productivity gains from automation are so great they must accept more risk to stay competitive, and 72% say they will take more risk than the competition to maintain their competitive edge.

“We are at a tipping point with generative AI as Canadian business leaders are transitioning from experimentation to integration that delivers real business impact,” said Craig Eaket, Managing Partner, IBM Consulting Canada. “As with any transformational change, there are challenges but there is also widespread recognition of a tremendous opportunity with AI for increased productivity. The potential business value is extraordinary.”

“Process automation is not about replacing an individual. It’s about enhancing the value of individuals—making human work more human,” said Javier Tamargo, CEO, 407 ETR. “AI has a role in helping us advance to provide better service to our customers.”

The findings also show that generative AI continues to fuel significant workforce changes. While more than half of Canadian CEOs reveal they have not yet assessed the impact of generative AI on their employees, they do believe the workforce will grow by nearly 6% over the next three years. In fact, while 59% of surveyed Canadians CEOs say their teams have the skills and knowledge to incorporate generative AI, 52% reveal they are hiring for roles that did not exist last year due to generative AI. Despite this push, however, 58% of Canadian CEOs say they are already struggling to fill key technology roles, highlighting the ongoing challenge of finding qualified talent.

The IBM study also reveals that CEOs recognize good governance is essential to effective generative AI, an area for which Canadian CEOs give themselves top marks. Of all the countries surveyed, Canadian CEOs are most satisfied with their AI governance plans, with 48% saying they have good governance in place today, significantly higher than the global average of 39%. Brazil reported in at second place with 43% and the United States’ self-assessment ranked them last with 32%.

Other key study findings include:

  • Just 22% of Canadian CEOs see customer experience as important for enterprise transformation, lower than the global average of 30%.
  • More Canadian CEOs (35%) categorize efficiency and cost savings as the key objective in their AI deployment than the global average of 26%.
  • 43% of Canadian CEOs are prioritizing technology modernization over the next three years (9% more than the global average), and 34% are prioritizing their ecosystem and partnerships, higher than the global average of 24%.

To view the full study, including actionable strategies to help organizations navigate the complexity of generative AI adoption, visit:

For more information about IBM Canada, visit

Study Methodology

The IBM Institute for Business Value, in cooperation with Oxford Economics, conducted interviews with 3,000 CEOs from over 30 countries and 26 industries from December 2023 through April 2024 as part of the 29th edition of the IBM C-Suite Study series. These conversations focused on business priorities, leadership, technology, talent, partnering, regulation, industry disruption and enterprise transformation.

gic partners like Microsoft. IBM data and AI consultants typically employ multiple models, each applied to a specific use case. Different models can be optimized for specific tasks, enhancing performance and efficiency.

About IBM

IBM (NYSE: IBM) is a leading provider of global hybrid cloud and AI, and consulting expertise. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. More than 4,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and consulting deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s long-standing commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service. Visit for more information.

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Source: IBM

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