Because AI has incredible potential to create business value, it’s vital that business executives know several important things about this vital technology.
To do that, executives must understand the business options artificial intelligence creates and also what can make it a higher risk.
It’s also important to pinpoint the best organizational structure to infuse AI and to consider how to manage the technology.
Continue reading to learn more about what executives need to know about AI.
AI is many different technologies that work as one to allow machines to understand, sense, act, and learn with intelligence that approaches a human-like standard. As it turns out, many people have different ideas of what AI is because it isn’t any one thing or technology.
Natural language processing and machine learning are two examples of AI which each changing and evolving in separate paths. When these disparate technologies are applied with analytics, data, and automation, businesses are better positioned to achieve their goals, whether it’s to increase sales, enhance customer service, or optimize the global supply chain.
It’s also helpful to understand the differences between ‘narrow AI’ and ‘general AI. Narrow AI is what most people see in their daily lives, such as digital assistants, weather apps, and software that analyzes large amounts of data to optimize various business functions.
Narrow AI is powerful, but they focus on relatively small roles.
That said, narrow AI has a lot of power to transform lives and organizations, so pursuing narrow AI efficiencies is well worth doing.
General AI is what we often seen in science fiction, such as robots acting and thinking like human beings.
They’re able to think strategically and creatively – handling all kinds of incredibly complex tasks.
While machines can do some complex tasks faster than people, general AI has yet to be fully realized in the real world.
The collaboration of human beings and machines is still essential for the best results.
At this point, AI is an extension of human beings and never a replacement.
For your organization to adopt AI to its best advantage, you should understand the possibilities it offers.
To do that, you should understand some of the basic possibilities AI can give your company:
If your company plan for AI is to drop a ton of money into it one time and that’s it, you’re probably not going to be successful with it.
Artificial intelligence can definitely increase your company’s bottom line by increasing profits and reducing costs. However, the accounting department needs to allocate regular funds to ensure the models and algorithms are working correctly and are being updated as warranted.
Some experts say you should think of AI like an F1 car. These high-tech race cars perform optimally when the crew can watch in real time from the pits how it’s performing on their monitors.
Monitoring AI all the time while its doing its work is essential and that takes a regular set aside in your budget.
CEOs and other executives needn’t be intimidated by artificial intelligence. You may not have a computer science degree, but you can understand the tech that undergirds AI.
Any proper use of artificial intelligence or machine learning will be based on something your organization is already doing; it won’t be some out-of-this-world Skynet mystery.
When an executive is evaluating whether an AI project is a good fit for the firm, they should have the confidence to say if something isn’t making sense. We mean that an effective, well run AI project should be easy to understand in layperson’s English.
For instance, it should be easy for you to grasp how the AI project will affect real people, whether those are customers, employees, managers, etc. If your team or vendor cannot easily explain how the AI project will help your organization, it may not be for you.
Companies have had to learn how to deal with and use technology for decades. First there were radio and TV ads, then personal computers, and now cell phones and apps. AI is the same thing and you shouldn’t see it as intimidating or scary.
Executives should consider what they want to achieve with AI and how their employees can do it with the help of AI and machine learning.
Remember, the most important part of your business is having the most enthusiastic and talented people working for you.
We find this particularly true in the realm of software development, whose tasks are performed by people, not robots.
Unlike people, computer algorithms are almost totally reliant on the data that is provided and the emphasis on the jobs that need to be done.
It sounds simple, but learning the parts of your organization that benefit from AI is essential to providing real-world results to the enterprise.
Bringing AI to your company for no particular reason might look cool but it won’t offer value.
AI offers a lot of benefits when the employees using the technology perform a lot of tests. They should know what needs to be tested, when it should be tested, and what the test results mean.
Two companies using identical technology can devise different roadmaps for their business future.
That’s one of the reasons digital transformation requires a great deal of customization.
Organizations that perform heavy AI testing will enjoy more benefits now and in the future.
AI has so much potential in organizations of all kinds.
It’s important that executives be well-grounded in the basics of AI so their organizations have the best chances of success.
Ryan is the VP of Operations for DEV.co. He brings over a decade of experience in managing custom website and software development projects for clients small and large, managing internal and external teams on meeting and exceeding client expectations–delivering projects on-time and within budget requirements. Ryan is based in El Paso, Texas.