Quick Wins For Your Business Using AI
An undeniable fact is that every company is trying to find a quick, straightforward way to get an edge in their market. While there are a lot of solutions claiming to have the “Silver Bullet” of seamless automation, the major holdup, even more then money, is the sheer amount of time and disruption to the workplace that these solutions cause. We have entered an age where we need to show quick wins, and the promise of glory a year from now is no longer considered acceptable. A lot of companies are now trying to lean on Artificial Intelligence (AI) to help them achieve this, but many executives still struggle to find the real business world application of them. Furthermore, we are now entering a new reality, that these solutions are really no longer an option and will force us to change, learn and adapt to them or find ourselves no longer considered cutting edge.
We have made great strides in AI recently, but part of the misconception is just how far we have really come. To better understand how AI can help us, we must first understand what it is. The most common approved definitions of AI put it on a range between Weak AI (Reactive), Strong AI (Self Learning), and True AI (Self Aware). Currently, even our most advanced AI arguably still falls into the Weak AI category, and when we pull back the covers, still require human interaction to produce output. This brings us to issue number two, that most people have a challenging time even defining what AI is to begin with, which is complicated further by the fact that AI takes two different forms. One form, which is the more visible of the two, is those using it for Intelligent Automation as is mostly discussed in this article. The second form is where you are utilizing the Machine Learning side and taking historical, real time and behavioral data to gain better Predictive Analytics. Ultimately, in either form, AI is taking a process that a human would otherwise have to perform, and utilizing the AI system to automatically accomplish those actions with limited or no human interaction.
Now that we understand and have defined AI, we can start to look at how we can use it in our business. There are really three basic steps to implementing an AI strategy. First, is to identify and evaluate your business for repetitive, non-revenue generating functions. Now we are not talking about the one-offs, but tasks that require an employee to repetitively perform, in a “nonphysical” interaction, i.e. tasks other than making calls, or deciding based on subjective reasoning rather than process. Second, is to have a firm, documented workflow of these processes to make sure that they are being performed correctly and as efficiently as possible. The old saying of “garbage in, garbage out” still applies to AI. If you feed it a bad process, it may help, but it will still be a bad process. Lastly, what are the short and long term goals of the company. There are times, where very robust, costly and disruptive technologies are necessary like a WMS, ERP or CRM for your business.
Solutions like Robotic Process Automation are really making huge waves in the market. For the first time, companies can automate functions, a little piece at a time. Even though you still need to have a properly defined process, it is a lot simpler to look at one process, streamline, and automate it, then to wait until you have streamlined all your processes before starting any automation. This is allowing companies to only bite off what they can chew and recognize the results of one automation before moving on to the next one, without causing disruption to their business or clients. Lastly, because this model is more modular in nature, this also opens better cash flow for a business where they see the ROIs come back to them quicker.
Accelirate is on a mission to help their clients determine how they can Accelirate Business Processes using RPA, BPM, AI and Cognitive technologies; and focuses both on RPA and “Smart” RPA Technologies