5 ways AI is reshaping businesses
Lately, AI has opened a lot of opportunities for businesses. We explain 5 areas in which AI is reshaping businesses today
Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning are changing the way business operations are performed today. They are providing a new source of competitive advantage to companies. We can distinguish two major ways : First, they enable companies to increase their operational profits by automating a share of small, mundane, and manual tasks. This helps to decrease companies' costs, and increase their productivity rate significantly. Furthermore, AI has opened a lot of opportunities for businesses that did not exist in the past or seemed far from reach in the near future. Through predictive analytics, for example, businesses can leverage their data and create better, more accurate forecasts that uncover hidden aspects of their businesses. There are many ways in which AI is helping and reshaping businesses, from organization and management to process automation. For the sake of simplicity, in this article we are going to structure 5 areas in which AI is reshaping businesses today:
AI helps in creating new sources of value
Beyond this, they can help companies create new services or products for their customers. For example, companies can use AI to collect insights about what their customers are saying about their products, or even sometimes, how customers are complaining about their products. Collected at scale, these are rich insights that can be used to guide a company on 1. new products to develop or 2. possible ways to improve and further develop its products and services. By collecting, structuring and analyzing feedback, suggestions and messages, companies can become even more relevant to their target segments. Overall, AI can help companies to transform their data into an asset. For many companies that are not using their data, we usually notice that AI makes them perform a considerable leap forward.
AI is both saving time and reducing costs
AI can improve the speed of operations within companies and decrease operational costs. In essence, AI helps to decrease mundane tasks so that employees can focus on more value-added tasks. A simple example is a chatbot. A chatbot is a piece of software that conducts a conversation via auditory or textual methods. Chatbots enable companies to provide 24/7 customer support that can (partly) guide customers or answer to their questions. Employees intervene only in specific cases where a human intervention is needed, for example to solve a complex problem or deal with a high-value customer. Another example is predictive maintenance. Predictive maintenance techniques are designed to help determine the condition of in-service equipment in order to estimate when maintenance should be performed. For companies that operate assets, predictive maintenance is an obvious choice as it leads to lower downtime and less expenses. For other industries and sectors, there can be significant differences in the opportunities in terms of cost-cutting. Choosing them accurately is a driver of profits and productivity.
AI improves decision making and productivity
AI-based solutions have the capacity to rapidly process very large amounts of data and find hidden patterns, correlations and causalities. These patterns are usually invisible to the human eye. Thanks to these hidden insights, artificial intelligence is increasingly used to "augment" the work of the managers by providing them with data-driven recommendations. McKinsey predicts that machine learning will reduce supply chain forecasting errors by 50%, leading to more accurate decision making. For example, predicting how prices will evolve can lead to better decisions in procurement and sales. In the area of marketing, lead scoring can help target the best customers and increase the hit rate (the probability that a lead will become a customer).
AI is improving customer relations at scale
Sales and marketing are the area where AI is expected to create the most value in the next few years, and it is no surprise. Companies usually collect data about their customers and their customers' preferences, and can't leverage this data easily if they don't use AI. This is especially the case for companies that have many products, or many customers, or both. At every stage of the customer journey, AI can make the journey more relevant and more satisfactory, increasing client retention. For example, AI can help companies to predict which customers are likely to churn, when this might happen, and design a strategy to prevent churn. Another example is the use of AI to personalize the customer journey by providing the right content at the right moment, and ensure the attention span of the customer is not 'wasted' with irrelevant content.
AI is improving companies' security
Any company or individual must be very careful in managing the risks in terms of fraud and security. Whether we know it or not, Artificial Intelligence is a growing tool to enable this. For example, in a field where Kantify is very active, i.e accounting, we see that AI is the best technology to spot fraudulent suppliers invoices before they enter the accounting workflow. In the field of cyber security, AI is used to detect spam, phishing emails and malware in real-time. Finally, in the field of banking, AI enables to detect and prevent malevolent use of credit cards. Next time you use your credit card online, think about the hidden software that protects you !
The future of AI in business
Artificial Intelligence is rapidly moving its applications from the research labs to the business world. We see more and more success stories of companies using AI to grow, keep their market position or even disrupt their market. According to a global PwC research, it is estimated that by 2030 AI will contribute to $15.7 trillion GDP increase of the global economy, "making it the biggest commercial opportunity in today's fast changing economy".
Do you feel that it is time for your organization to accelerate with AI? Are curious to find more about how AI can benefit your business? Contact us for a 15mn introductory call or write us a short note, we will get back in touch.