Artificial intelligence, yes but…

Hype, trend, buzzword – artificial intelligence has certainly not been a marginal phenomenon in recent months. Do we really need to draw even more attention to the topic? Haven’t all the superlatives already been used? Yes, the technology is disruptive and the way it works is a turning point in society. But while experts and the broad mass of technology enthusiasts are equally amazed by the meteoric rise of machine intelligence, we still don’t seem to have a clear picture of the possible extent of this fundamental transformation of AI-driven digitalisation.

However, the enthusiasm is unbroken – even in more traditional to conservative German boardrooms, an enthusiasm for technology is spreading that is unusual by German standards, as AI also promises answers to major challenges such as the shortage of skilled labour. Above all, AI could provide relief for the IT sector, which is understaffed, as the gap between machine-generated and human-generated code continues to shrink as the tools improve. However, we must not forget the downsides of this development.

One obvious risk is the growing danger of specialisation. If tools take over programming based on prompts in natural language, the number of developers who write code themselves could decrease in the long term. If there is then a fire, the question arises: who do we call? Another problem that is not quite so obvious concerns offshore programming. Outsourcing software projects has been a common strategy for local companies for years. But if companies increasingly rely on AI solutions, the need for offshore partners could become obsolete. What will then happen to companies with an affinity for programming and their well-trained specialists abroad? They will not disappear into thin air. On the contrary, they will have the necessary expertise to launch competing products on the market and act as new rivals. A dynamic whose effects are almost impossible to predict – but which could well turn the industry on its head.

It is possible scenarios like these that are quickly overlooked in the prevailing AI euphoria. German companies that have outsourced their programming abroad to any degree must now think about a possible change of course: what exit strategies can be implemented? What consequences does the automation of software programming have for internal processes?

Certainly, AI promises great things in the near future. That’s why now is the time to not only look at the positive potential, but also to think seriously about the negative effects and possible consequences of this development. Offshore programming is a wonderful example of the ambivalence of AI technology. On the one hand, it could one day almost certainly replace a programmer and thus save costs and hard-to-find staff – but we can only speculate about the possible domino effect and uncertain market dynamics due to new players from countries with great IT expertise and manpower. Therefore, despite all the enthusiasm, a critical look at possible risks and the proactive development of strategies is essential. AI will probably prove to be the death knell for offshore programming one day. Those who were aware of the possible consequences at an early stage will then be well prepared.

This press release can also be found at

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