What is AI and What Can It Do for Your Business?

Artificial intelligence solutions are already a key part of the business landscape and will only become more important to successful business operations in the coming years. You have undoubtedly used artificial intelligence (AI) in your everyday life already, whether you know it or not.

When you fly, the plane you fly on uses AI autopilot. When you order a rideshare like Lyft, your fare is calculated accurately thanks to AI. Even your email spam filter operates on AI. Don’t forget the voice recognition feature on your computer—that uses AI, too. You are more familiar with AI than you may realize.

In business, software applications can “think for themselves” thanks to advanced algorithms that allow programs to learn from the data that they process. This machine learning is independent of the programmers who designed them. AI features can do some amazing things, but they still need human input and monitoring. With your help, AI can give your business a leg up on the competition.

Automate Processes

Automation in and of itself is not an AI process. However, automation can be augmented by AI to increase production and reduce human error. Intelligent automation is a combination of traditional automation with AI. 

First, AI tools “observe” how employees are working, discover the “optimal” workflows and then develop an automation path to follow. When automation begins, AI uses artificial intelligence to gather and analyze more information, which allows it to continually adjust and improve processes. In short, employing AI in these operations means having automation that can improve itself over time as it receives more information.

Analyze Data

AI is a powerful tool when it comes to analytics. It can identify patterns in huge amounts of data and then draw insights from these patterns. Of course, humans can also find patterns in data, but not at the speed or with the accuracy that AI operates. AI can identify opportunities for improvement in your business workflow that you can immediately implement.

AI is also good at predicting outcomes based on data about your products, services and customers, letting you know what will work and what won’t. Essentially, you will save time and money because your AI will deter you from making poor business choices. Also, AI can pull information together from multiple platforms and provide a unified view of these data sources in minutes.

Interact with Humans

AI needs human design and input in order to work. Eventually, humans may take on more of an assistive role to AI, but AI is currently seen as the supplementary tool.

First, humans design and then equip an application with machine-learning algorithms to perform the necessary tasks. Your language translating app must be taught idiomatic phrases, for example, “I’ve lost my mind.” Medical apps have to be trained to diagnose illnesses. 

These AI applications also have to learn how to work with humans. After all, Siri and Alexa didn’t learn to be charming and helpful on their own. Your conversations with Siri are a good example—as she becomes used to your voice and your preferences, her performance improves. These applications learn from innumerable instances of human interaction.

Then, once AI programs begin to learn and come to conclusions, experts are still needed to explain these conclusions to others. For instance, these “explainer” experts are called upon to recount what went wrong during an autonomous car accident or to explain why an AI-aided medical procedure went as it did.

Additionally, humans are necessary to maintain AI systems and to monitor them to make sure they continue to work properly. So even though AI might take over certain jobs that are currently being done by humans, new human positions are created to assist those programs, albeit highly trained ones. The interaction between humans and AI is an ongoing process, one that will take years to master. 

Although they can sound intimidating, artificial intelligence solutions are not exotic processes anymore. They are now the norm in many industries, whether it be in manufacturing or customer service. Most often, you are dealing with machine learning, the process by which algorithms adjust performance as they gather more and more data.

Your business can benefit from AI in automation, customer communications, workflow optimization, employee scheduling and task monitoring. In fact, the applications for AI are nearly endless. Unfortunately, many businesses are not taking full advantage of AI software to improve what they do. To stay competitive in a world where technology has a place in every business, your company will be better off if it uses all the tools available, and that includes AI.

To learn more about AxiaTP’s artificial intelligence consulting, contact us today.