Artificial intelligence (AI) and automation are two areas of technology that are extremely popular right now, and that’s not likely to change any time soon. Because of these branches of technology we are facing many more changes to our lives and work in the near future.
Historically, it’s always been the big corporations that have jumped in first with new technologies as they tend to have the scale and resources to do so. But, with AI it’s different. With these technologies being so widely accessible it’s the SMEs that are starting to gather up these opportunities first and take on the big beasts for once.
There are various benefits that SMEs can secure from both AI and automation, but these are three of the main ones:
• A low-cost, easy-accessible way to enable companies to make better choices. For example, machine learning techniques are being used in agriculture currently that profiles soil fertility and then goes on to make predictions as to when and where to fertilize a certain crop based on the weather and climate.
• Anticipate what a customer may buy next by using predictive algorithms.
• Deepen relationships with customers through personalization, using AI.
Automation is also a fantastic help to a number of different businesses where repetitive tasks are carried out. One company that’s benefited greatly from it is a life sciences company that uses automation to speed up the creation of drugs. In one particular case, the drugs effectiveness was measured by counting which cells were affected by the disease. This was done through a biopsy. However, opposed to a laboratory scientist carrying out the repetitive task on their own, a pattern-matching, machine learning algorithm was on hand to help by recommending which cells were affected and which weren’t. The more the AI completed the task, the faster and more accurate it became. This approach is called “assisted intelligence”. Rather than replace the role of the person it simply helps them perform their job better.
SME’s that will benefit most from the likes of AI are those that are engaging with their employees, and making them feel a part of this big change. It’s about educating them in all the capabilities the AI can bring and will enable the company to get the best out of their current staff opposed to having to look to replace them. Companies also need to recognize which tasks are best suited to AI, particularly those that are repetitive and data-intensive. With this in mind, there’s a very good chance SMEs can reap the benefits of AI before their bigger rivals have the chance.
Original source PA Consulting