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Social Innovation

Consulting AI: the five pillars of a successful AI-based transformation

The Artificial Intelligence (AI) market is climbing towards its apex, with an estimated industry value of $3.7 billion by 2025. AI dominance will arrive before that; by 2020 AI will be found in almost all new software products and services. However, progress comes with challenges. Specifically, it is difficult to integrate AI in a way that helps the business become more profitable.

So how can this be achieved? There are five identifiable steps that companies can take to ensure a successful AI-based transformation.

1.Demonstrate effective digital leadership

The transition to AI must come from senior leaders who drive the new ways of working, fund them adequately and encourage testing of new concepts. Small-scale testing helps keep the cost of the transformation manageable and allows the organization to prove the technology us effective before scaling it up.

2. Create new value propositions

AI has the potential to change what products or services a company sells. To do this, the company must be open to re-examining the ways in which it delivers value to customers and other stakeholders.

3. Enhance customer engagement

AI can help a business better understand customers and more accurately predict their actions and needs. The only way to achieve this is to put the customer at the centre of the AI vision and constantly strive to close the gap between business and customer.

4. Improve the operational environment

AI can help root out issues and opportunities in a business, whether that is in supply chain, internal operations, product and service design or customer engagement. By identifying where disruptions are happening, companies can then use AI to simplify processes, change behaviors and improve operational performance.

5. Evolve the core architecture

Creating an IT system which is easy to use and provides easy access to business data and apps is one of the biggest challenges that established companies face. New IT capabilities are the key to this transformation, and these can be achieved by either evolving or overhauling existing systems.

An AI case study

AI is already being successfully used in businesses. Take the example of a manufacturer outfitting its workers with wearables that tracked their eye and arm movements. The data from the wearables fed into an AI platform that determined the ideal way to perform a task and told the workers how to do it. It also alerted shop-floor managers of potential mistakes, enabling them to prevent breakdowns or waste. The workers found the system was there not to take their jobs but to help them do their jobs better. For the business, the greater efficiency reduced cost and increased profit.