Study: Over half of users operate generative AI without employer approval


  • 64% of workers have passed off generative AI work as their own.
  • Over half of global workers employ generative AI without formal employer approval.
  • 32% anticipate integrating generative AI into their work routines.
  • Top 3 secure practices: company-approved GenAI, no confidential data in prompts, and no personally identifiable customer data.
  • Top 3 ethical guidelines: fact-checking, validated accuracy, and company-approved tools.
  • 70% of global workers lack formal training in safe and ethical generative AI use.
  • Generative AI policies vary across industries, with some lacking clear regulations.
  • 71% of the workforce believes generative AI enhances productivity.
  • 51% anticipate increased job satisfaction with GenAI proficiency.
  • 44% expect higher pay for mastering generative AI.

Main AI News:

As the realm of generative AI continues to evolve, a startling revelation has emerged from the corporate landscape. Recent research conducted by Salesforce, spanning a diverse global workforce of over 14,000 individuals across 14 nations, underscores a significant trend – a staggering 64% of workers have surreptitiously presented generative AI work as their own intellectual creations.

This research highlights a pervasive phenomenon: a substantial portion of employees harness the capabilities of generative AI without the formal imprimatur of their employers. Astonishingly, over half of these AI practitioners operate without explicit approval or guidance from their organizations. Furthermore, this incursion shows no sign of abating, with an additional 32% anticipating integration of generative AI into their work routines in the near future, irrespective of official oversight.

The survey, a part of Salesforce’s Generative AI Snapshot Research Series, offers valuable insights into the responsible and ethical deployment of this transformative technology within the workplace. The findings identify the top three secure practices associated with generative AI:

  1. Exclusively employ company-sanctioned GenAI tools and programs.
  2. Refrain from using sensitive, confidential corporate data as prompts for generative AI.
  3. Vigilantly avoid incorporating personally identifiable customer information in generative AI inputs.

Additionally, the research delineates the three principal ethical guidelines for GenAI in the professional arena:

  1. Rigorously fact-check generative AI outputs before their utilization.
  2. Confer trust only upon generative AI tools that have been rigorously validated for accuracy.
  3. Adhere strictly to company-approved generative AI tools and programs.

The survey’s findings also shed light on intriguing facets of generative AI utilization in workplaces, including the practice of attributing generative AI-generated work as one’s own, a practice indulged by a substantial 64% of workers. Equally concerning, 41% of employees admit to contemplating the exaggeration of their generative AI proficiency to secure employment opportunities.

Perhaps the most disconcerting revelation emanating from this research is that a substantial 70% of global workers have never received formal training on the safe and ethical employment of generative AI in their professional responsibilities.

It is noteworthy that the adoption and regulation of generative AI exhibit significant disparities across industries. A mere 15% of all industries possess loosely defined policies governing generative AI use in the workplace, with the United States reporting a slightly higher rate at 17%. Alarmingly, close to a quarter of industries, or 24%, lack any discernible policies regarding generative AI usage, a figure rising to 33% within the United States. An illustrative example emerges from the healthcare sector, where an overwhelming 87% of global workers lament the absence of clear-cut policies within their organizations. Additionally, a substantial 39% of employees worldwide report that their employers maintain a neutral stance on generative AI’s role in the workplace.

Despite these challenges, the advantages of embracing GenAI in the professional milieu are conspicuous. A resounding 71% of the workforce attests to the heightened productivity facilitated by generative AI. Furthermore, nearly 60% of employees express a greater sense of engagement in their work when aided by GenAI. In terms of career prospects, 47% of global workers believe that mastering generative AI would render them more coveted in the job market. Over half, or 51%, perceive it as a pathway to augmented job satisfaction, while 44% contend that it would equate to higher remuneration compared to their non-GenAI proficient counterparts.


The widespread, unregulated use of generative AI in the workplace, with a significant portion of employees claiming AI-generated work as their own, poses both opportunities and challenges. As GenAI continues to proliferate, industries need to establish clear policies and invest in training to harness its potential for productivity and job satisfaction while mitigating ethical risks. Businesses that embrace this technology responsibly will likely gain a competitive edge in a rapidly evolving market.