The hottest tech trends have exploded out of betas, labs and trials into everyday use cases for many businesses, with a raft of new products or developments. If your business isn’t looking to take advantage of ML, AI and bots, it may not be in business for much longer.
Every aspect of business will be transformed in some way by machine learning (ML) and AI. For example, bots are already taking over in human resources with the likes of TalView using ML to find candidates and using AI during the interview process. Other AIs, like Swedish recruitment robot Tengai are being used to help provide fair and unbiased interviews to avoid discrimination, an increasingly vital part of the hiring process.
If these smart systems can help get better quality recruits in the door, it can have an impact on literally any area of your business, no matter what the market.
Robot Process Automation (RPA) has helped many businesses automate simple but time-consuming tasks and make data more accessible for analytics and improved decision making. Imbue RPA with machine learning and business can perform analytics on the fly, do sentiment analysis, using natural language to understand the text in reports or documents and flag up issues immediately.
It can also improve workflow based on what’s happening with the RPA, perhaps scanning orders and invoices, and highlighting important customers that can benefit from the human touch, even as the business moves to greater automation.
Beyond internal business functions, ML is helping in supply chains and ordering, by finding the best prices among suppliers automatically, factoring in delivery speed, quality and reliability to automatically build supply networks that are efficient and flexible, to keep any parts or raw materials flowing. As the Internet of Things picks up speed, AI will help whole city transport networks function better to help deliveries, and your business can benefit from that too.
And, when it comes to building brands, engaging on social media and so on, AI is coming to the rescue with tools to help keep on top of the fat data pipes of posts and responses. How influencers are using AI is a look into the future of how many businesses will handle their social media efforts.
Chatbots help out in huge numbers
If your business is a fast-moving startup, chatbots are already essential in handling the customer support service function, saving on the need to outsource or hire and stock a costly service centre. That’s as fast-growing business pick from the huge number of cloud services for office, HR, accounting and other tasks – all of which are starting to use AI and bots to help with their own support issues.
Bots help huge businesses with millions of customers deal with their ordering, travel, financial queries and other issues, but are also becoming more personal and smarter using customer information to tailor chats to people’s needs, to resolve issues faster, using AI to adjust their tone and to find the right answers to tricky questions. Health and lifestyle brands are fast adopting chatbots and virtual assistant skills, like Alexa’s new Vitality health advice skill to engage and offer advice on a wide number of platforms beyond the smartphone or desktop to help make them more accessible and convenient to use.
AI and bots won’t kill jobs
Despite the lack of evidence, there are still plenty of stories about all of these technologies wiping out millions of jobs. Notably, the recent “Amazon robots are sacking workers”, story quickly got debunked. The truth is that most people who enjoy their roles will still get to keep doing them, but doing the parts that add more value to the business and their customers.
The bots and machine learning tools, can help people do their jobs better, which is what Amazon’s aims to do, and to help them hit targets. Yes, there will always be a percentage of people who can’t keep up in any role, but the bots are only helping identify them faster than traditional manager reviews and appraisals would.
Keep checking back for the latest in AI and bot news, to find out how it can benefit your business and help it compete in the digital office future.
Chris Knight writes about where technology will take us next, from the power of neural networks, artificial intelligence and chatbots, to the endless worlds promised by augmented and virtual reality. From the latest in gadgets and hardware to how digital businesses can use technology to grow, Chris makes the future clear and understandable to all.