The importance of deploying AI correctly
Businesses recognise the potential of artificial intelligence (AI) deployment. IDC estimates that USD$35.8bn was spent on AI in 2019.
However, some companies are struggling with AI because they are taking half measures, only implementing them in small use cases or in environments where the data is insufficient to power its success. That’s causing their businesses to flounder.
Enterprise AI isn’t something that businesses can dip their toes into. Companywide buy-in and methodical planning ensure that one’s eyes aren’t too big for his stomach. According to PwC, AI has the potential to contribute $15.7trn to the global economy by 2030 and boost GDP for local economies by as much as 26%.
Yet, return on investment is directly correlated with the sophistication of the AI deployment. Successfully implementing AI requires that companies think big—and with long-term goals in mind.
Operating a 24/7 business
Take for example a business that needs to operate 24/7. There are many challenges and expenses associated with round-the-clock, particularly multi-market service. The biggest one is the struggle to acquire enough talent to be in the office at all times. That’s why most businesses limit many services within a single time zone. But in this constantly connected world, where clients and customers expect assistance at any moment, the need for an always-on solution has never been more pressing.
Cognitive AI—that is AI capable of “learning” over time—is able to turn any business into an always-on and always ready entity. By drawing on organizational data, cognitive AI is able to answer customer questions around the clock and handle typical high-volume but low-value tasks with little to no human involvement. This allows customers from around the world to engage with the business whenever it is most convenient for them and substantially reduces the strain of providing 24/7 service on human employees.
According to McKinsey, 45% of workplace activities which currently rely on human intermediation could be replicated by machines and therefore, be executed with machine efficiency. That isn’t to say that humans would be replaced, however. Humans will still be central to identifying the tasks necessary to achieve a result, and they would be responsible for building the workflow based on those tasks, but AI can build the automation that transforms how business is done.
Previously, the only way to create automation that addressed a company’s unique needs was to have a dedicated team of engineers research business processes and then identify and describe all necessary steps to reach a resolution
With intelligent automation, however, systems can combine analytics, cognitive AI and guided machine learning to hasten the creation of new automation. Without having to execute the entire process themselves, the human staff can spend more time on the work that adds value, such as conceiving new products and services or improving the customer journey.
Making the right investment
It is not an exaggeration to say that AI will revolutionize the enterprise and bring a wealth of financial and productivity gains. Its promise makes it an unavoidable line item for any business hoping to compete in the global economy. But, like any investment, if it is poorly implemented, it will be high-risk, costing companies so much in the long-term.
This article was contributed by Chetan Dube, CEO, IPsoft