3 Ways Small Businesses Can Leverage Artificial Intelligence

3 Ways Small Businesses Can Leverage Artificial Intelligence

When you see the words “artificial intelligence,” what runs through your mind? Some imagine warehouses full of machines pulling items from shelves for order fulfillment, whereas others imagine server rooms operating at maximum capacity. The truth of the matter is that both of these scenarios are correct, depending on the type of organization and industry you’re talking about. Let’s take a look at how artificial intelligence can cut costs, improve operations, and eliminate unnecessary or repetitive tasks for the small business.

First, let’s define what we mean by “artificial intelligence.” In a business environment, when we discuss AI or machine learning, we generally refer to automated technology that can perform tasks that are normally done by human workers. There is usually an emphasis on taking data and applying it to specific scenarios. The technology can then learn and identify trends. Since the AI industry will exceed $390 billion by the year 2025, one can argue that AI will play a vital role moving forward--one that your business can benefit from in the long term.

Here are some ideas you can apply when considering AI for your organization.

Streamline Tasks and Operations

Managing resources and maintaining operations can take a lot out of you, and AI offers a way for organizations to overcome these challenges by making certain tasks far easier to deal with. It goes without saying that some tasks will take more time than others, and some of the especially important tasks, like vetting new hires and assisting customers, require a considerable amount of focus.

Take vetting new hires, for example. Imagine what it would be like if you could take all of that time sifting through resumes, cover letters, and job applications and instead apply it to a part of your operations that makes you revenue. This is just one way that artificial intelligence can help. Instead of doing all of that work yourself, AI can identify the most qualified candidates so you can focus on other tasks. Services like Jobscan and Eightfold use AI to help businesses perform this task. Now imagine having a call line set up where AI systems can help answer the most frequently asked questions by customers or clients. While you would still want your staff on hand to address more complex problems, it’s likely that most problems fall into that frequently asked questions category, leaving your staff with more time to focus elsewhere. There are several options on the market that can be “trained” and configured to be the front line of your customer support.

Enhanced Data Analytics

Most businesses collect data of some sort, but how that data is used is what makes the difference. Some organizations have the tools to analyze data, but don’t know how to properly utilize them. Others might not have the means to analyze the data at all. AI is the key that unlocks all of that potential and gives organizations the opportunity to put that data to good use.

AI uses what is called predictive modeling to extrapolate data for trends. Through this process, AI can take a crack at what the future might hold, giving your business the chance to make better choices. In this way, your organization can work toward a future armed with knowledge that could make a difference in the long term.

Lowered Costs and Increased Efficiency

Some people might think that AI is stealing jobs, and in a way they might be right, but the fact remains that this is the wrong mindset to approach AI. While this might be of concern to laborers in unskilled industries, the truth boils down to the fact that most workers can stand to gain something from AI in at least some capacity. If you look at it in a different light, you might realize that AI is not necessarily stealing jobs, but making jobs easier through the use of automation. This takes the edge off of it and makes it a bit less disconcerting.

Ultimately, if you look at AI as a value proposition, you’ll notice that both simple tasks and complex ones can be made easier overall. Simple tasks might be completely automated, whereas complex tasks can be broken down into more manageable chunks. If you ask us, if you have the opportunity to use technology to make your job easier, you should do so.

What do you think about AI in the business environment? Do you have any ideas for how you might implement it? Let us know in the comments.



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