Nowadays, it’s almost impossible to open a (digital) newspaper, a newsletter, or read a blog without a referral in it to Artificial Intelligence. Judging from what the press writes, the capital made available to invest in AI makes it seem like every entrepreneur is working on it. However, practice and research figures* show that this is certainly not (yet) the case. The need to transform and make the company futureproof with AI seems clear to everyone at first sight. Yet in the Netherlands, not every entrepreneur seems convinced to investigate AI’s possibilities for their business. There are still some obstacles to overcome.

Motivations for entrepreneurs not to invest in AI applications for their company yet:

  • People think AI is the same as automation – we are already automated, what does AI add to this?
  • People think they need a lot of technical knowledge in-house to develop, roll-out, and implement AI projects – do I need to hire someone, especially for that?
  • People think that applying AI within an organization is very expensive and that measuring the effects is difficult – what does it yield?
  • People think that AI is only interesting for entrepreneurs in the manufacturing industry – AI are robots, aren’t they?
  • People do want to do something with AI, but how? – Where should I start within my organization? How do I apply AI in my specific processes?
  • Above all, the fear of change also dominates – How will AI change my current organization? Will there be new roles? New functions? How do I fill them? How do I deal with these within my organization?  Do I have to fire people?
  • AI also provides ethical discussions in the field of privacy, discrimination, and freedom. This clarity is still lacking, and this creates uncertainty.
  • Moreover, a clear framework for monitoring the use of AI and algorithms by governments and companies is still lacking.

 

Why companies need to participate in the digital transformation with the help of AI

In short, there are still many reasons why entrepreneurs are cautious and suspicious about actually using AI within their company. However, the fact remains that if companies do not go along with the digital transformation that is going on worldwide, the gap between them and companies that do will grow. Because large international companies are now freeing up budgets and investing heavily in AI, these companies’ suppliers will also have to go along. Otherwise, they will miss the technological connection.

The previous paragraph mentions several reasons why investing in AI is necessary for both large and small companies. Below you will find a summary of why you, as an entrepreneur, cannot and do not want to stay behind in this transition.

Consequences of deploying AI at the Macro level:

  • The U.S., China, and our neighbouring European countries are already investing vast amounts of money in AI With good reason; this technology will significantly impact our daily lives, economy, and society. It will have significant geopolitical implications: China and the U.S. are investing heavily, trying to become technological world leaders. Those who do not have a plan will quickly see their talents disappear to these countries.
  • AI is a dominant technology that will play a central role in all industries and domains. From auto-driving cars, smart cities, robotization in healthcare, better diagnostics to self-organizing production lines in industry and services. AI will bring significant breakthroughs in our society and economy and get our prosperity and well-being higher.

 

Consequences of AI’s deployment at the Micro level:

  • AI accelerates decisions thanks to better data
  • It automates labour-intensive manual processes
  • It increases the company’s ability to adapt to market changes thanks to real-time information and forecasts that go far beyond human capabilities
  • AI lowers inventory levels because demand can be better predicted
  • AI simplifies workflows
  • It leads to more accurate forecasts
  • It creates new data-based business models
  • AI makes companies significantly more efficient, increasing their competitiveness; in other words, investment in AI results in:
    • Lower costs
    • More yield

 

Where and how to start with AI within your business? 

You realize the added value of AI for your organization and business case, and you see the need for transformation. But where do you start, and how do you begin this within your organization? Of course, you can choose to get AI knowledge in-house. However, AI specialists are scarce and difficult to find and recruit. You can also consider first investigating with an external AI party the possibilities for applying AI in your organization before making all kinds of investments. Datamaister is such a party. With over 20 years of experience combining AI and business, we like to help companies on their way with their digital transformation honestly and reliably. You know your company, we are experts in AI, Data Science and Machine Learning. Together, we can determine how to strengthen your business, product, service, and business case with the help of AI

*  Links to articles with more statistics and figures regarding AI:

https://www.techrepublic.com/article/only-29-of-companies-regularly-use-ai/

https://financesonline.com/artificial-intelligence-statistics/