Artificial Intelligence (AI) is going to shake up several sectors and its place within business will be of greater importance. From existing applications to the progress it will bring, this article focuses on the advantages and impacts of AI.
Artificial Intelligence becoming universal in businesses
According to a study conducted by Narrative Science (2016), 38% of companies are already using AI and 88% of other businesses are using technologies that rely on it. The 2016 Economist Intelligence Unit/Accenture survey highlights that 79% of company directors believe AI can make their jobs easier and more efficient. These figures demonstrate the extent to which AI is here to stay.
On a production line, thanks to AI, recovered data can be analysed meaning that any potential machine failures can be foreseen. The advantage here is clear: if minor repairs are carried out before the breakdown can happen, there will be no interruptions to the production line.
The Royal Bank of Scotland has also developed its own bot, Luvo. The bot can respond to basic customer requests and carry out simple tasks such as bank transfers. If Luvo is unable to answer the customer’s request, the Adviser immediately takes over. The bank is therefore more efficient and employees can focus on more complex issues.
IBM, we remember, has opened its own center dedicated solely to Watson. The center is being used as a testing ground for new productivity techniques (co-design, coworking, etc.), with everything being driven by Watson, IBM’s AI program.
Another survey from InsideBIGDATA.com shows that for 45% of respondents, the impact of AI is already being seen within their company, and for 47%, the impact will be seen within 3 years.
Which sectors will benefit from AI?
The possibilities of AI are huge. Every sector will benefit from it but to varying degrees. The most developed sectors today are sciences, bancassurance, pharma, automotive, aerospace, telecommunications and energy.
In a study on AI Business in 2017 a survey was conducted which asked CEOs about their future investments in AI. In 88% of cases, the top investment choice was data collection and analysis, the second was customer service with 79%, followed by marketing and R&D.
In a market such as big retail, AI can be used to understand customer behaviour and decide on the changes that need to be made in the aisles and on promotions, for example. The State and local authorities will also reap the rewards from AI, particularly in flow management and public transport.
In the healthcare sector some software can now even diagnose patients by analysing the results from a scanner, x-Ray or other types of medical tests.
As for the advantages, technical managers believe that the biggest benefits will come from predictive analysis, whether this is for machines (with preventive maintenance), customers, or the company itself. This supports the ideas expressed by aviation specialists on digital transformation.
There are still some obstacles in the way, however. These hurdles relate particularly to the difficulties in understanding the capacities and limitations of AI, as well as the need for training, the investments required and managing the data.
The main objective of Artificial Intelligence is to assist with decision-making in every type of process, thanks to precise, automatic and contextual analysis of the company’s data in real time. According to the AI Business 2017 survey, in 67% of cases the biggest hurdle to implementing AI comes from a lack of understanding in regard to its capabilities and limitations. If its integration is well-thought out in advance, however, it will have a major impact in the years to come and across all sectors.
Francois Marie Lesaffre
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