Chief Information Officer

The Impact of Artificial Intelligence on IT Professionals

Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies are quickly becoming must-haves for businesses around the globe. These technologies empower companies to retrieve data from myriad sources and perform rapid data analysis. Perhaps best of all, AI drives automation, ensuring businesses can speed up and improve their everyday operations.

Nicholas Fuller, Director of Cognitive Service Foundations at IBM Research, provided insights into AI and its impact on today’s IT professionals during his presentation to Argyle’s CIO membership at the 2018 Chief Information Officer Leadership Forum in New York on June 19. In his presentation, Fuller explained how IT professionals can integrate AI technologies into their everyday work.

Business professionals should not expect the push for AI to slow down any time soon. Companies want state-of-the-art data analysis technologies that they can use to generate actionable insights at any time. Meanwhile, AI helps business professionals immediately collect and review massive amounts of structured and unstructured data, ensuring these professionals can get the insights they need to make informed decisions.

There is no limit to the potential applications of AI, either. If companies devote time and resources to understand AI and incorporate it into their daily operations, these businesses may reap the benefits of their AI investments for years to come. “Business outcomes are very much intertwined with technology drivers,” Fuller indicated. “There is no fundamental limit from a physical standpoint about where [AI] technology can go.”

How a company integrates AI into its everyday operations may have long-term ramifications on the business, its employees and its customers. If a business uses AI in combination with data analytics tools, it could gain insights it may struggle to obtain elsewhere. Then, this business can perform in-depth data analysis to find ways to differentiate itself from the competition, boost its revenues and much more.

“As data continues to proliferate – along with advances in AI – the marriage of the two leads to insights that ultimately help to improve business outcomes, i.e. unleash a new way of doing business,” Fuller said.

The Importance of Automation

Furthermore, the combination of AI and automation is key for businesses of all sizes and across all industries. AI helps companies automate mundane processes, and by doing so, ensures that workers can prioritize high-value tasks.

Automation – like AI – has become a top priority for businesses. As companies consider ways to keep pace with today’s always-on, always-connected consumers, they may leverage AI technologies in conjunction with automation. That way, companies can empower employees to automate mundane tasks and reallocate their time and resources to help their businesses connect with consumers.

Businesses can use AI to analyze their automation efforts, too. If companies understand the impact of AI on their day-to-day operations, they can take the necessary steps to optimize the value of their AI investments. In addition, businesses that deploy AI effectively can use it to manage their automation efforts.

“Automation has gone through its own evolution, from an opportunistic type [of automation] … to one that is more structured and analytically driven,” Fuller pointed out. “Now, automation is governed by intelligence.”

Intelligent automation helps companies simultaneously eliminate manual processes and become more productive and efficient than ever before. This form of automation powers meaningful business improvements, and ultimately, ensures a company can get the most out of its AI investments. “When you apply intelligent automation, you can build on what you did before,” Fuller stated. “You can dramatically reduce the number of manual processes.”

Many companies are currently enjoying the benefits of IBM Watson, an AI platform designed for small and medium-sized businesses and enterprises alike. Watson helps companies streamline everyday business processes and continues to learn about business users over time.

The Full Potential of AI

With AI technologies, business professionals can speed up and improve their everyday operations. The technologies are designed to help businesses maximize the time and resources at their disposal without putting their day-to-day operations in danger. These technologies cannot substitute for business professionals; instead, they complement business professionals and allow these individuals to drive significant improvements.

“[AI] is not about practitioner replacement. It’s about practitioner augmentation,” Fuller indicated.

Generating actionable insights is paramount for business professionals. Now, AI technologies empower business professionals with the insights they need to succeed.

As companies search for ways to analyze the business landscape and drive long-lasting growth, AI and automation may prove to be crucial. Together, AI and automation enable business professionals to obtain actionable insights without delay.

“With the [Watson] platform, you’re automating everything from the building of an IT environment to the maintenance and hygiene of the environment,” Fuller said. “Automation and AI are driving actionable insights so that you can take action.”

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