Effective artificial intelligence strategies for business

The tremendous power of AI systems and the need for strategy

There can no longer be any doubt that sophisticated artificial intelligence systems have tremendous transformation powers which can literally turn just about any business around for the better. I suppose one does not have to look any further for proof of the power off artificial intelligence than the Internet. The majority of modern businesses are operating on a scale and in a fashion which would have been alien to business owners just a few decades ago.

Artificial intelligence has allowed business owners to provide a higher quality service as well as more sophisticated products and the data collected by AI systems allows business owners to make more intelligent decisions regarding the future of that business. There are now many people who are suspecting that the future power of artificial intelligence can in fact be infinite. One thing has become abundantly clear and that is the fact that it is those businesses who are embracing new technology and who are adapting quickly that are often in the best position to benefit from upcoming opportunities.

The need to strategize

You can have one of the most modern passenger liner ships but unless you have a captain which is able to navigate and who can use a compass and other modern navigation systems, there is little chance that you will be able to reach your desired destination. Some of the questions which is often asked by business people is whether it’s possible to integrate an AI strategy into their existing business plan? And according to experts it will be best to have a separate artificial intelligence strategy which has been uniquely customized to suit your business and to provide in all of the unique needs of that business. The only exceptions will be if you have a very recent business plan which already includes a detailed AI strategy. However the field of artificial intelligence is providing its own unique challenges which may often require a different set of skills as well as extensive knowledge of all the issues involved in that system and this is why a separate artificial intelligence strategy is definitely the best course of action.

People are wary of change

Whenever there are significant technological advancements within industries and organizations there will always be those people that will become very concerned about their job security. This is why there should be a strategy in place which will be able to deal effectively with what is known as change management. Employees which are facing a future where there will be greater implementation of artificial intelligence will probably be asking how the company culture will be affected by AI and also how those changes are going to be managed. People will simply also like to know which specific employees or teams of employees is most likely to be affected by this proposed AI project. From the part of owners and department managers some decisions will have to be made regarding what exactly will be said to employees and also how exactly the process is going to be handled. Specific decisions will have to be made regarding how the process of change is going to be managed as the workplace starts to change.

Turning strategy into reality

It is one thing to strategize and to plan however it is the implementation of all those things which will have to be carefully considered because it is going to cause many disruptions in the workplace while the new systems is being implemented. Once again management have to carefully look at all the various change management issues. All of the necessary key steps will have to be identified and decisions will have to be made on how they are going to be the implemented. Furthermore management will have to decide how exactly the new AI projects is going to be delivered and also which departments or outside companies will ultimately be responsible for delivering those projects and services. Many businesses turning to artificial intelligence might not have the skills or the knowledge to manage the entire process and therefore decisions will have to be made about those projects which will have to be outsourced.

Addressing AI skills

What this comes down to is how prepared is your employees to work with sophisticated artificial intelligence systems? This is why management will have to carefully evaluate the skills levels of company employees and when necessary additional training has to be provided. There will have to be a process of raising people’s awareness and keeping them involved in the proposed program. It is especially important that management and all other leaders are committed to the new system. The preparation period is essential because it may be necessary to employ additional talent to ensure that the company is prepared for the challenges which artificial intelligence may bring to the company.

The need for objectivity

It is one thing to plan something during a meeting in the boardroom but turning those plans into reality is something completely different. You have to look at the skills and the capacity of your employees because this might determine the type of systems that may be more suitable for that business. Management will have to determine what kinds of technology will be required in order to turn all of the proposed strategies into reality.

The issues of intimidation

There has been so many misinterpretations of artificial intelligence especially by Hollywood that people find it difficult not to be intimidated by these high performance machines. This is exactly why everything the company does has to be ethical and correct and artificial intelligence systems have to be implemented in the correct way. Because of data storage issues the company may require special consent from users, customers and also employees. Implementation of AI has to be done in such a way that it doesn’t invade people’s privacy. Businesses should not neglect some of the legal implications of using artificial intelligence systems.

An efficient database

It simply will serve no purpose to have a sophisticated AI system if you do not have sufficient data in place to keep your AI system occupied. This is why you should you ensure that you have an efficient data strategy in place and that all of the problems be sorted out before the system is implemented. It is possible that the business will require new data collection methods and if that proves to be a problem than it might be necessary to make use of third-party data. Management should ensure that the business has the correct sort of data to ensure that your AI system will be able to function correctly. That sort of data has to be accessible in sufficient quantities in order to ensure that the system is justified.

One final note on competitive advantage: Businesses will have to look at plans to ensure that more data can be acquired strategically in the future.

Contributed by Avi Ben Ezra, CTO of SnatchBot

April 3, 2019

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