Insights for Organisations

Artificial Intelligence: Is it the Right Move for Your Business?

Paul Brown
20.11.23

Artificial Intelligence (AI) presents a transformative force in the business world, offering immense potential, but also posing significant challenges. As AI technology becomes increasingly accessible, organizations must carefully consider how they want to harness its power.

To do so, they must evaluate their unique needs and objectives, assessing whether AI can streamline operations, enhance customer experience, drive data forward, or improve employee satisfaction. Yet, at the same time, it’s crucial to be mindful of the potential dangers of AI technology, such as any ethical concerns it may pose, data security risks, inaccuracies, or algorithmic biases. Likewise, businesses must acknowledge that AI adoption is a significant organizational change that may require training programs, employee upskilling, new staff members, and the like.

As such, a thoughtful and strategic approach to AI adoption, including mitigating risks and measuring ROI, is essential for businesses to thrive in this era of technological advancement. So, if you’re looking at the endless possibilities of AI to see how it can fit in with your business, and what exactly the transition process could look like, we’ve got you covered.

What’s in this article?

Executive summary

Where could AI fit into your business?

There are many ways organizations can harness the power of AI within internal and external business processes, Here are a few examples of where AI could fit into your business:

Learn more about how to use AI to supercharge your digital transformation strategies and some of the top uses of AI in business.

How to assess whether AI is the right move for your business

Is your business ready to embrace AI with open arms? To find out, you must carry out the appropriate assessments of your current business model, internal processes, operating systems, products, and services. You should begin by identifying your specific objectives for using AI. Are you aiming to improve efficiency, enhance customer service, improve data analysis, or something else?

Here are a few questions to ask yourself to assess your business’ need and readiness for AI, and where you’ll benefit most:

Step-by-step guide to making the transition to AI-powered solutions

Transitioning to AI solutions is an ongoing process that requires adaptability, continuous improvement, and a commitment to addressing both employee and customer needs. Here are 8 steps your business can take to help make the transition to AI-powered solutions as seamless as possible:

  1. Define your objectives and conduct needs assessments
  2. Start with pilot projects
  3. Be transparent with staff
  4. Employee training and upskilling
  5. Data integration
  6. Feedback from internal and external stakeholders
  7. Track and measure key performance indicators (KPIs)
  8. Celebrate successes

1. Define your objectives and conduct needs assessments

The first step involves all that has been discussed above in How to assess whether your business is ready for AI. Make sure to cover all bases, such as what you want to get out of AI, whether you have enough data, the right resources, and budgets.

2. Start with pilot projects

Begin with small-scale pilot projects to test the AI solutions. This minimizes risks and allows for fine-tuning before full-scale implementation. For example, if your pilot project fails, you’ll have kept financial or reputational losses to a minimum. You’ll also have plenty of learnings to take from this initial project if you choose to relaunch another similar project in the future.

3. Be transparent with staff

You should also ensure that your AI solutions are transparent and explainable as this is critical for building trust with employees. This is particularly important as approximately 69% of employees fear that AI will take over their roles when, in fact, AI is a powerful tool that can be used to enhance their daily work lives and make their jobs easier. In turn, this actually improves employee satisfaction!

4. Employee training and upskilling

To harness AI’s disruptive potential and address employee concerns around job safety, the focus should be on upskilling rather than layoffs. To do this, provide your employees with the necessary training to understand and use AI solutions effectively. This should include:

If your employees are not on board, it’s unlikely that your AI aspirations will take flight, and upskilling plays a key role in this!

5. Data integration

Ensure your AI solutions can seamlessly integrate with your existing data infrastructure and systems. Data quality and accessibility are key factors in AI success.

Getting your data in check is crucial to pave the way for successful AI integrations, so preparations may need to be made. Start by organizing and centralizing your data from various sources into a unified repository. Ensure data quality by cleaning and standardizing it, addressing duplicates, and resolving inconsistencies. It’s al;so important to implement data governance practices to establish ownership, access controls, and data security!

6. Feedback from internal and external stakeholders

Involve customers in the process by seeking feedback on AI-powered services or products. Implement user-centered design principles to make AI solutions user-friendly and customer-oriented.

Moreover, establish continuous monitoring of AI systems to identify and resolve issues in real-time. Collect feedback from employees and customers to make ongoing improvements. Employees especially will often have valuable insights into the practical implications of AI in daily operations.

7. Track and measure key performance indicators (KPIs)

Set clear KPIs to measure the performance of your AI solutions. Regularly track and analyze these metrics to ensure they align with your business objectives. This way, you can improve upon or shut down any AI operations that are not meeting objectives, and invest more resources into the AI projects that are seeing results and hitting KPIs.

8. Celebrate successes

Celebrate milestones and successes achieved through AI implementation. This should include recognizing and rewarding employees who contribute to the success of AI projects as this will act as incentive for others to follow suit.

Maximize the potential of AI with trained talent

AI adoption within organizations is a transformative endeavor with the potential to revolutionize business operations and decision-making. However, the success of this adoption heavily relies on having a trained and capable team in place. Without the right staff, unlocking the full potential of AI becomes a significant challenge. Learn more about the fastest-growing AI roles.

We’ve discussed the importance of employee upskilling to ensure everyone is on-board with new processes and have the skills to use AI technologies, however, at what point should you consider hiring new staff to help with the transition?

At FDM, we understand that every business is different and digital maturity among teams will vary, which means there is no one right answer to this question. However, here are some of the factors to consider to help you decide:

Artificial Intelligence for Real-Life Business Challenges

Earlier this year, FDM hosted an Industry Insight event at our Toronto office in collaboration with Microsoft. Through panel discussions, fireside chats and interactive Q&A sessions we uncovered some interesting perspectives into the most critical issues concerning AI at this nascent stage of its integration into business.

We were joined by:

Our panelists discussed how machine learning, natural language processing, and computer vision can enhance your business’s processes, decision-making, and customer experiences.

They all spoke about leveraging AI to reduce errors and increase efficiency. From AI-driven PowerPoint design suggestions to accelerating medical diagnoses and fraud detection in healthcare and finance – the potential for AI is endless.

However, despite these significant capabilities, the panel were most interested in how AI-powered automation can relieve human beings of mundane, repetitive tasks so they can instead focus on more strategic and creative projects.

Among the other issues around AI adoption another common concern was around safe AI use. How can organizations address challenges around data quality, privacy, ethics, and other potential hurdles?

The panel emphasized the importance of coming together as a society to make a collective effort to ensure the responsible and ethical use of AI. They mentioned using responsible AI principles, building responsible AI dashboards to monitor those principles and also building the evaluation framework to make sure that AI is being used ethically.

The event also discussed the advantage of partnerships with AI tech providers for successful AI integration and provided an overview of Microsoft’s AI tools, resources, and how they can assist businesses on their digital transformation journey.

Could your organization benefit from accessing trained AI expertise that blends seamlessly within your existing teams? We provide businesses with trained consultants who have the expertise to support technical organizational projects through curated technical training programs. Tap into our diverse talent pools and benefit from tailored services that meet your unique business challenges and suit your working methodologies!

For more information, check out the FDM Consultant services or get in touch to find the right individual for the role.