By now, most people have at least heard of Artificial Intelligence (AI), and its subsection of machine learning. More and more businesses are incorporating AI into their companies and practices. Studies claim that nearly 50% of companies are already incorporating AI into their workforce. A sizable portion of these companies has invested in fully functioning AI teams. In general, there has been a significant increase in spending on the development of AI and machine learning programs in recent years, demonstrating a considerable increase in an initiative for the implementation of these tools. The use of AI and machine learning has been increasing as people realize the unique advantages of employing such strategies.
However, if you find yourself less familiar with these subjects, it may leave you to wonder:
All these questions are valid, and we can help you find the answers.
What is AI? What is Machine Learning?
Just because you’ve heard of these terms doesn’t mean you’re clear on the intricacies that distinguish them. The field of AI is an advanced section of computer science and can be a little difficult to wrap your head around, especially if you’re not an IT person.
AI is the science of any machine or program that can operate independently in a manner that resembles human thinking. This thinking can be demonstrated in diverse forms and employed for varying uses. AI can be applied in entertainment, like when someone plays against CPUs in computer games such as chess. Such programs have been known to outperform human opponents occasionally. Of course, AI is an especially useful tool in modern business and can be employed for communication, organization, analytics, and so much more.
So, if AI is the study of teaching computers to think independently, then machine learning is a subsection of this process that focuses on the teaching aspect. After all, before the machine can operate on its own, someone has to teach it how to do this. There are many forms of machine learning, including supervised, unsupervised, and deep learning.
All of these forms of machine learning can be compared to how human beings learn, which is what makes machine learning and AI so unique. Common types of machine learning rely on reinforcement, and someone telling it when it is right or wrong. Slowly, this repeated process filled with reinforcement and correcting builds up in a way that resembles the human neural network.
This process can be difficult to achieve successfully, but more and more programmers, including the programmers at Tizbi, are perfecting this art. It may be a complicated process, but it enables programmers to craft tools that are oriented towards the specific needs of individual companies. After all, no software, especially not AI, fits under a one size fits all equation.
What are the benefits of AI?
First and foremost, it’s important to understand what AI actually means in the context of today’s technology. Society as a whole may not be at the point where advanced AI, such as humanoid androids and self-driving cars, are explicitly ingrained in our day-to-day lives.
However, the transformation towards AI is very much happening more subtly. In fact, many everyday activities are already incorporating AI. Just think about the process of calling a customer service line. Before speaking to a human representative, the caller must answer a series of questions to an auto-receptionist. Think about how your email’s inbox filters out spam without ever bringing your attention to the fact that this is happening. Think about the automatic vacuum cleaner that has learned the layout of your house to clean more efficiently.
There is a lot of future potential in the field of AI, and the possibilities are endless. Every day the study of AI leaps forward in advances, and new uses are discovered. Some developers think of AI on a scale that rates a program in its independence from human supervisors. On the low end of the scale, an AI program needs constant monitoring from a human operator to ensure it functions correctly. On the other end of the scale, one would observe a program that operates entirely independently without human supervision.
Realistically, most modern AI lies somewhere in the middle of this scale, with a few exceptions on both ends.
Now that your attention is drawn to this transformation, it might feel exciting, alarming, or even possibly disturbing. Not everyone is a fan of those auto-receptionists, they aren’t always the most empathetic conversationalists, nor does everyone trust an automatic vacuum cleaner to do tasks correctly. However, both of these tools save a lot of time for people in their way.
Another fear about the growing rise of AI is that one-day intelligent machines will completely replace the human workforce, but this shouldn’t ever be the case. The real point of this transformation is to make the day easier for human workers. If AI programs work along with human workers, then enormous amounts of time will be saved as AI easily tackles time-consuming, often mind-numbing tasks, leaving their human counterparts time to accomplish the many other tasks they wish they could prioritize.
There are a few points to take away from this discussion. First, that which is considered AI lies on a diverse spectrum. Second, not all AI is completely independent of human operators. Lastly, companies who add AI to their toolbox can save major time, funds, and gain a unique competitive advantage. These benefits create an environment that optimizes resources and produces impressive results in a given workday.
Why should I add AI to my company?
It can’t be stressed enough that the companies who employ AI save so much time, funds, and effort.
Most tasks that AI accomplishes tackles all three of these chores at once. In the classic example, an AI program can accomplish something that a human worker would rather not do. Certain tasks are time-consuming and mind-numbing, but the program has no problem with this. It is already saving the time and effort of the human employee. Second, most tasks performed by AI are accomplished very quickly, saving everyone time. Naturally, if the job is accomplished rapidly and accurately, this saves resources, the most critical resource being money.
One specific way that AI can save workers these valuable resources is the way most programs tackle large data sets. An AI specialty is to comb through large sets of data and parse out the information that is truly valuable in an instant. On a good day, this same task can take multiple human worker hours. Another benefit for the way AI can tackle big data sets arises when you consider that most companies are already in possession of loads of data that no one has time to go through. Company data may come in the form of recorded customer service phone calls, or possibly sales records that have accumulated over the years, or in many other ways. The good news is that all of this information can be incredibly useful for a company’s development. The bad news is most companies never actually get to this accumulated data, often because the sheer size of the information is intimidating, and no one has the time for it. This is where a well developed AI program could come into play to quickly go through this information and pinpoint where the gold is, so all that a human worker would have to do is consume the results of the AI investigation.
AI saves time by organizing data, sorting emails and phone calls, optimizing communication, and many other ways. The possibilities in the ways AI can help a business are only limited by imagination.
It might not be easy to develop a good program, and it can take a while to build, but if you invest what is needed, you will earn back everything that went into development and more.
What common types of businesses rely on AI?
In short, the easy answer to this question is... All of them!
There is not a single industry that doesn't, in some way, rely on AI. Take it a step further and consider that not a single industry couldn't benefit from the implementation of AI in the future. For this article's purposes, we will focus on the financial, banking, healthcare, science, and retail industries, as they have been pinpointed as the most popular industries for the implementation of AI. Many of these industries, and other industries that were not listed overlap in similar ways for how they can apply AI to their day-to-day and long term business practices.
The banking and financial industries have been increasingly investing in AI, as there have been many developments in how this technology can improve fraud detection. AI programs can be used to catch anomalies in large data sets, which is one way fraud detection can be identified using AI. By keeping track of the patterns in an individual's spending, AI can pinpoint any unusual activity.
In general, any industry that has to keep track of large datasets mainly benefits from AI, and this includes finances. Many programs exist that include such benefits as keeping track of and organizing data and implementing predictive algorithms for gauging possible future outcomes based on old data.
Some incredibly impressive progress has been implemented in the healthcare and scientific fields when it comes to the diverse uses of AI.
There has been a recent push in the clinical research community to incorporate advanced tools like AI to increase clinical trial quality. All of the same general benefits of AI can be applied to this community. The electronic organization of data is incredibly helpful in the context of moving from trial to trial. Then, predictive algorithms can be incredibly useful in deciding which drugs are more likely to be successful, and therefore more worth pursuing in research. AI can analyze data, running statistical computations to find essential information on drugs. Impressively, AI can be trained to monitor participant compliance with tools such as smart pill bottles that remind patients when it is time to take their medicine. Further, AI programs have been incorporated to simplify patient recruitment by examining thousands of records in an instant to find the most appropriate candidates for an experiment based on an analysis of patient demographics.
Branching deeper into the fields of healthcare and science, AI programs have made impressive strides forward in the context of the medical professions. Through tools like image recognition AI has been trained to read medical exams, recognize abnormalities in medical scans, and even diagnose patients.
AI has been implemented in simpler tasks like within administration where they can sort through electronic health records to keep information organized and relevant. Further, these records can be used by programs to predict the course of a patient's disorder and treatment.
AI can also be employed on imaging tasks. There have been multiple studies conducted in which AI has successfully analyzed medical scans such as radiology images to diagnose medical concerns successfully. This technique is particularly useful as AI programs can notice abnormalities and changes so tiny that human physicians may have trouble noticing them. Examples such as this are important because AI may serve its purpose in catching medical issues like cancer in earlier less noticeable stages.
Even the field of psychology has begun incorporating AI through chatbots. Although cases of AI in this field are very preliminary, programs trained in the detection of vocabulary linked to anxiety and depression may be able to intervene in suicidal ideation cases successfully. If employed correctly, this could be a very useful tool in the context of psychological intervention. Ideally, such programs could help with lowering suicide rates through quick response.
Lastly, AI has served to be an increasingly beneficial tool in the retail industry, especially in the context of online shopping. As society turns more and more to shopping online, programmers in big retail companies have had plenty of time to incorporate AI solutions into their marketing strategy.
Machine learning can train programs to identify objects visually. This tool helps create an experience for each user that is unique. As AI learns a customer's consumption patterns, it can construct a series of purchase recommendations tailored to the user's interests. Based on other items a user may have searched, AI can recommend similar objects that resemble or complement the original item purchased.
It is important to reiterate that listed above are just a few examples of how AI can help specific industries develop and grow. Many programs are still preliminary, and more amazing uses for AI and ML are currently in development. These tools show great promise in how they can help companies advance, benefiting the industry employees and consumers alike.
What is the application of artificial intelligence?
It is important to remember that as every business has its own unique goal, every AI solution will be similarly unique. There is no "one size fits all" answer to any software approach, which remains true with AI and machine learning.
That said, programmers are getting creative in their approach to applying artificial intelligence, and many businesses are already reaping the rewards that come with the implementation of advanced tools.
One business solution provided by AI is the overall improvement of the customer journey. A potential customer has to jump through a lot of hoops before they decide to buy into a business, and there are many points along the way where it is possible to lose someone's interest. This is why it is crucial to optimize the customer journey, making their task as easy and enjoyable as possible.
There are many ways in which AI can improve the customer journey. Image recognition enables a program to compare certain items with a customer's previous searches and purchase, allowing the program to make recommendations for the customer and help them find the items they may need. AI is also exceptionally good at predictions, often exceeding human ability in these functions, which also helps in anticipating a customer's behaviors, and improving the overall experience. AI can also manage the content of large documents, varying from written to visual media. This tool enables a person to find relevant portions of a document based on keywords with AI assistance.
All of these functions allow the customer journey to be custom-tailored, allowing for a more relevant and efficient customer journey, leading to a more satisfied user. A happy user increases the odds of a transaction, as well as a return to repeat business.
AI can help companies in problem-solving and decision making elements of labor. Naturally, every company encounters several roadblocks along the way. However, imagine how much time and resources could be saved if many of these problems were foreseen. The company in question was able to take precautions to avoid the problem altogether. As many purposes of AI stem from the collection of large data sets, AI can get familiar with the details of a company. A program can make intricate calculations on a multitude of different scenarios. With more exposure to their gathered information, companies can make better, faster, and more educated decisions. Machine learning can identify potential problems and then find ways to solve these problems.
For example, AI can predict when a facility may need maintenance. Over time, there is natural wear and tear of tools and work environments. It can be challenging to track everything, especially in big warehouses, which many businesses rely on. However, if the maintenance of a facility is not kept up to date, it can create a hazardous work environment for employees. By keeping track of a facility, such programs will monitor when maintenance is needed for a specific environment. This allows companies to avoid situations in which certain parts of a facility get neglected. This predictive maintenance can save company money by keeping everything up to date and taken care of. It also fosters a safer work environment, which is just as important.
Another major business solution provided by AI is communication. Communication remains one of the most important areas of a successful business. A company may have all the right tools, but hundreds of potential customers might slip away if there are faults in communication. This is why every company needs to prioritize tools that facilitate excellent communication and training in this area. AI can help with both of these elements.
To start, AI chatbots and auto-receptionists can be employed to greet customers and point them to the appropriate representative. Some common problems may even be resolved without human intervention.
AI is already all over email, organizing important messages, and separating them from spam. Similarly, some tools can remind an employee to reply to an email correspondence they may have forgotten.
A great modern implementation of AI in the communication department is by organizing recorded voice calls for the training of future and current representatives. The right AI program can go through those hundreds of recorded voice calls that many companies collect, to find key information. These programs can help human representatives know what works well on a call and what doesn't. All in all, this strategy can vastly improve an organization's communication abilities.
The solutions listed above are just the tip of the iceberg. There are countless other ways in which AI and machine learning might be able to advance a business. This is something to consider moving forward. AI programs are custom made for individual companies and can be employed diversely.
Is AI right for my business?
The answer to this question is simply yes.
We understand that it is an intimidating process, especially for those who have never worked with any form of AI or machine learning before. However, despite how new and innovative these tools may seem, they’ve been around for decades. We at Tizbi believe that every company deserves the highest grade resources at their disposal. Most importantly, artificial intelligence and machine learning can help businesses of all sizes, from big to small, the possibilities are endless. If the concern is that your company is too small for such an advanced tool, then understand that this is simply not true. Reconsider whether or not you have any compatible projects, most likely you have many that would hugely benefit from these implementations.
It can take a while to train AI, and it is a bit of an investment, however, it is undoubtedly worth it. Any time and money put into the development will be earned back, and then some. Every industry can find uses for AI, just as every company should consider implementing it. However, it is more than just about “finding a use” for AI. It is about how using AI can significantly improve the quality of your business operations, while saving you money on resources.
There is no reason to wait. Contact Tizbi for a consultation, and find out how AI can be integrated for your business needs.