In the last few years, Artificial Intelligence (AI) has gained momentum in every industry. Healthcare, transportation, manufacturing, logistics, retail, and more have started to use AI-based applications to improve productivity and performance.
According to PwC, Artificial Intelligence will contribute $15.7 trillion to the global economy by 2030. So businesses can reap huge benefits from investing in AI. The MIT Sloan Management Review’s 2017 Artificial Intelligence Global Executive Study and Research Project found that 85% of executives believe that AI will help their businesses gain or sustain competitive advantage.
The best way to evaluate any emerging technology is to figure out its practical use in your business. So here are some uses of AI applications that can lead you to a path of growth and success.
1. Use AI-based Analytics to Make Better Business Decisions
The improvements in network and storage technology have brought about the age of big data. But the collected data is useless without analysis. Due to the large size, it’s impossible to analyze the data using human intelligence. It’s an area that machine learning and deep learning algorithms can help.
HANA, SAP’s in-memory data platform that uses machine learning to analyze and find patterns in big data, is helping Walmart with their data analytics. Walmart has more than 245 million customers visiting their stores and websites all over the world. So there is an enormous amount of data. HANA’s machine learning algorithms are bringing the important data to the forefront, so Walmart employees can make more data-driven decisions.
2. Add Automation to Make Your Marketing and Sales Soar
AI-based applications can start handling routine tasks. They can customize marketing and sales information for consumers. AI-based Chatbots can go further and help with responding to customer service requests to improve customer satisfaction and create recommendations for upselling.
Machine learning can also help with price-optimization for various markets. RapidMiner, a data science platform, leverages data about competitors, suppliers, consumer preferences, and risks to create pricing models for individual market segments automatically. This AI-based approach helps businesses optimize profit margins.
3. Make Inventory and Supply Chain Management a Breeze with AI
Machine learning algorithms can help retail and other businesses better manage their inventory. It can automate refilling requests and optimize supply chains. You can hand over your inventory management and supply chain decisions to AI-based applications.
Major AI players like IBM Watson are heavily investing in supply chain management. IBM’s supply chain products help you automate your order management and fulfillment. Another company TransVoyant is combining machine learning and Internet of things (IoT) to create applications that predict supply chain movements.
4. Improve the Maintenance and Safety of Your Equipment
Artificial Intelligence can help the manufacturing and transportation sectors improve their maintenance schedules. For example, the airline industry tries to predict the wear and tear on their fleet’s mechanical parts to prevent downtimes. AI-based predictive analysis can improve this process dramatically. It can help the airline industry create more optimized maintenance schedules to avoid unwanted delays.
The manufacturing industry has been already using AI for maintenance and safety. General Electric (GE) has developed the Predix platform that uses Artificial Intelligence to optimize and scale industrial applications.
5. Get Better at Hiring and Find the Top Candidates
Finding the right candidates for a job is a time-consuming process. There are new AI-based facial recognition applications that can interview candidates and evaluate their performance using emotional cues. It can help businesses streamline their recruitment process.
Companies like Unilever, IBM, Dunkin Donuts are already using Artificial Intelligence to screen entry-level employees. Unilever has declared their AI-aided hiring a huge success. Applicants can give an interview using the HireVue app on their smartphone. The app takes in the video and audio data from the interview, analyzes it and provides recommendations for the next steps to human recruiters.
6. Use AI to Fight Fraud and Prevent Cybercrimes
Businesses spend enormous time trying to detect fraudulent transactions. But fraud detection depends a lot on pattern recognition. So machine learning tools can pick these tasks up. Similarly, cyber security threats are also a matter of detecting pattern anomalies. So AI-based applications can help in this area too.
The company deepsense.ai is using machine learning techniques to develop solutions that can help companies better detect fraud. With rule-based systems, there are a lot of false positives. Machine learning algorithms can decrease these false alarms.
7. Expand Your Business With Self-Driving Technologies
Advances in self-driving cars are dependent on Artificial Intelligence. Businesses that depend heavily on transporting products can use self-driving trucks to lower costs and improve reliability. Manufacturing and other sectors can use autonomous cars to improve their operational efficiency.
Waymo has announced in the 2018 Google I/O conference that it will start self-driving taxis in Arizona by the end of 2018. GM is preparing to release self-driving cars next year. Starsky Robotics has tested a fully unmanned truck in Florida and will start hauling commercial freight with unmanned trucks this year. These vehicles will open up new opportunities for businesses to improve current processes and create new business revenues.
AI Development — Heaven or Hell? Depends on You. For business leaders who are looking to figure out Artificial Intelligence, the bad news is there is no shortcut. During the starting of the Internet, companies had to experiment to understand what worked for them. Businesses have to take a similar path of experimentation for Artificial Intelligence. Here are practical steps you can take to figure out your path.
Find the Hidden Business Opportunities. Evaluate your business to find out where you can use Artificial Intelligence. Depending on your requirements, you can benefit from inventory management or chatbots. Look at the return on investment (ROI) for your particular situation.
Get Ahead of the Business Risks. The problem with any emerging technology is that it can fail. So you might lose your investment. You can take an incremental approach to mitigate risks. Smaller increments will also give you an opportunity to course correct faster.
Find Reliable AI Partners Who Will Support Your Growth. Building an AI infrastructure is expensive and time-consuming. It requires developers to build the systems, data scientists to train neural networks, data mappers to label the raw data, and necessary machines to process the algorithms. For most businesses, hiring 100s of data mappers or establishing their own AI data centers isn’t practical. So finding reliable managed service providers can help you get the benefits of AI without heavily investing in expensive infrastructure.
Gain Experience Through Being an AI Practitioner. You can only learn by trying. It’s normal for organizations to get things wrong. If you start implementing solutions, you will learn from your mistakes. Your experience will give you an advantage over your competitors.