If there is any topic that has stirred its own levels of controversy, it must be Artificial Intelligence, or AI. Aside from the things you may have seen in a sci-fi movie, its future is something that has been in debate within numerous businesses, especially in recent months. The conclusions have been a mixed bag – some negative, others positive, and others are stuck in the middle. An example would be a 2017 report by PwC, where 37 percent of respondents expressed concerns that AI would cause them to lose their jobs, an increase from 23 percent three years prior.
Machines within the workplace are not a recent phenomenon – after all, you do have some machinery within your own office and at home. They are as useful as the safety levels top services will provide when you are surfing the internet, which you can also get from the list of the 10 best VPN services. However, a critic of artificial intelligence is now facing the idea that these machines are suddenly ‘removing the prospect of jobs’.
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When you think about it, does it mean all business owners need to change their perspective on issues regarding this development? When it comes to the small business sector, what should business owners do? If you are not knowledgeable on the field of AI, the work of incorporating it into your daily operations can seem daunting – but it does not need to be. You cannot afford to ignore it either.
If you need some help, here are some mindsets that may prove useful to you when navigating the issue.
It can be useful in gauging and enhancing the performance of your employees
Thanks to AI, numerous aspects of the customer’s journey have gone through significant improvements – and have also gotten much of the attention from the media. The most important thing to remember though, especially when it concerns business, is that giving your customers a great performance begins from the inside.
That means the buck stops with your employees. If they cannot do their job effectively, then the problems will inevitably spill over to the customer experience. When you are conducting your research regarding AI, then you must have the mindset of improving the employee experience first.
The good news is that there are plenty of AI tools out there, which can all be game changers, especially in predicting an improving the performance of your employees. In fact, you can even begin implementing them before employing new employees.
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For example, within the hiring process, you can utilize AI to screen the candidates who you are looking for to handle specific assignments. It can search if they have traits such as problem solving, organization, communication skills, and so much more. The machine will then use some company-specific and publicly available datasets, and predict to you how the prospective employee will perform at their job.
In addition, you can use some tools to keep track of the metrics of a particular employee, and use that to compare to the overall ROI (return on investment) you have. After this point, you can then use the tools in AI to identify different patterns, which will determine the average performance of specific departments in your company and all the top performers’ traits, while also analyzing each person’s weak areas.
The insights you will get from the information will definitely be extensive, and you can use it to make a ‘golden standard’ that every employee must be held accountable for. That can include aspects such as emailing habits, time management, multitasking approaches, and other habits. In the long term, this eliminates bias and raises productivity.
Elimination of numerous and time consuming tasks
Many employees today will tell you one thing they fear about AI is that it will eventually occupy the positing human operated jobs have done in so many years. Even though this aspect is undeniable, you cannot also deny that it can end up becoming a lifesaver for many entrepreneurs who are trying to get their businesses to profitability but have little resources to sustain a workforce.
The summary here is that the introduction of AI means that you can automate many tasks that would previously need you to either increase your overhead through hiring extra people, or working endless hours.
An example of this is sales forecasts. The tools you can get from AI eliminate the task you would have to try and find patterns within large data sets just to predict a spike in demand for your products, yet making a mistake along the way and having to restart the process. With AI tools such as Aviso or Pipe drive, you can save much of your energy and time, because you do not need to do data entries or research activities – which mean you can spend time building your business.
In addition, you can also remove significant aspects of the legwork involved in trying to increase your presence on social media platforms, thanks to tools such as Brandwatch and Hootsuite that monitor your accounts for you.
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Provision of insights into granular customer service
The latest development into the world of AI is its insights regarding customer service – and it is among the areas that have the highest levels of skepticism. The non-supporters will say customer service remains a human-human effort, which is understandable.
However, AI can prove to be a useful tool. For instance, the rise of chatbots. Because these are automated, that means your customer care service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. That is only the tip of the iceberg though – many chatbots also have the ability to do machine learning as well as NLP (natural language processing) to identify common threads in complaints and measure the inquiries from the customers.
However, the consumer interactions for each case still remain independent, and the system will gain insights so that it improves its responses.
The increase of people considering using AI does not need to be an intimidating prospect – it can be useful in improving various aspects of your business, as long as you can utilize it well.