Artificial intelligence (AI) has taken the world by storm in the last few years with the introduction and continued innovation of virtual assistants like Siri and Alexa, customer service chatbots, smartphone facial recognition, and much more.
Unsurprisingly, AI has wormed its way into the workplace, with 37% of organisations already using the technology in some form. In fact, companies using AI have seen higher employee retention rates and job satisfaction.
AI is a machine with the ability to replicate the human intellectual process to think or act like a human. However, here are three things that humans have that AI doesn’t yet:
- Emotional intelligence – AI tries to mimic human intelligence, but emotional intelligence is not as easy to replicate as AI doesn’t feel pain or suffering and, therefore, can not empathise with others.
- Creativity – AI functions on the data it receives from humans. It is designed to complete tedious, repetitive actions and lacks the ability to create new ways, styles or patterns that are helpful to a creative workflow.
- Soft skills – AI-powered machines cannot develop soft skills critical to workplace development and growth. Soft skills such as teamwork, time management, attention to detail, self-awareness, and effective communication require higher reasoning and emotional intelligence.
Even so, 52% of 18 to 24-year-olds in the UK are worried about AI’s impact on their future employment prospects. While people are right to worry, it is essential to understand that the ever-adapting technology can positively assist humans at work rather than replace them.
Here are three ways businesses can partner with AI to improve their workflow:
Allow AI To Help With Repetitive Tasks
AI can automate mundane, repetitive, data-driven tasks to improve the workflow. These tasks include:
- Invoice management – AI can extract key data such as names, invoice numbers, payment details, and amounts directly from the documents.
- Document management – AI can write, process, send, and back up documents.
- Customer interactions – AI can offer customers essential support and answer basic questions through chatbots.
- Inventory management – AI can order, store, and count a company’s products or services.
- Calendar management – AI can schedule meetings, send and answer emails, create new events, and reschedule events.
Allowing AI to help with these tasks frees up more time for employees to focus on skilled, creative, and emotionally driven tasks.
Allow AI To Help With Maintenance
AI technology can identify when machines and equipment may need maintenance or repairs, reducing the need for routine maintenance checks. AI can also predict failures before potential problems become severe, which ensures production remains at optimal levels, helps businesses avoid customer aggravation, and saves IT teams time, effort, and money.
In addition, equipment maintenance is already being improved with the use of digital twin technology – a digital characterisation of a physical object or process. Digital twin technology can help businesses to simulate real situations and outcomes, ultimately allowing them to make better decisions for the future.
Allow AI To Help With Filling The Gaps Of Your Current Inefficiencies
AI partnerships enable businesses to expand on what they currently do and don’t offer to their customers, providing a solution for companies with inefficiencies in areas such as customer care, marketing, and manufacturing.
AI-powered machines can now recognise people and objects to work safely alongside humans in production and manufacturing industries. For example, an AI-powered robot could handle repetitive tasks requiring heavy lifting, while a warehouse worker performs accompanying tasks requiring human skills and judgement.
In the marketing industry, professionals can use AI-powered tools to speed up the writing process for blogs, emails, social media posts, press releases, and more.
In addition, businesses can offer more personalised recommendations to their customers by allowing AI to do what it does best: analyse and process mass amounts of data to recommend specific offerings or actions.
For example, the music streaming service Spotify uses AI algorithms to generate personalised playlists for each user according to previous songs, artists, and genres they have listened to on their smartphone, tablet or laptop. AI-driven personalised marketing campaigns can help build stronger customer connections and increase brand loyalty.
Finally, AI will drive 95% of all customer interactions by 2025 through chatbots and other customer service automation. This will help businesses provide faster and more efficient customer service as AI solves some issues whilst employees have more time to answer complex customer queries that the chatbot can’t.
It is vital to recognise that, despite how helpful and powerful AI can be, there would be no artificial intelligence without human intelligence.
Humans are required to design, maintain and operate the technology, as well as write the lines of code and input the data that the technology uses to complete tasks. In addition, AI content needs to be fact-checked by humans as the text can often be inaccurate.
So, the lesson is clear: organisations that use AI tools and machines to replace workers with automation will miss the full potential of the technology. Tomorrow’s business leaders will be those who embrace AI to transform their operations and workforces.