Over the two years of Covid-19 pandemic, AI adoption has seen a high rise among companies. Strangely, the power of AI and analytics was most visible to industry leaders during the pandemic. 52% of companies adopted AI or accelerated their plans towards that goal in 2019 due to the pandemic. 86% companies said that AI is becoming mainstream in 2021. All in all, I can see that AI adoption rate in industries has increased from 19% to 31% in the two years of the pandemic.
Oil and gas industries, especially, are seeing a faster adoption rate of AI technology. As these industries deal with very high-value assets, lots of operational data and processes that need hundreds of checks and guarantees, AI does seem like the right solution, in my view. In these industries, AI is used for maintenance, quality control, fault detection, inventory management, and production planning. So true AI and not just the predictive AI will become an industry standard, at least in the oil and gas industries.
With the new ways of working, be it remote or hybrid, AI and analytics became critical, especially for consumer purchasing. Adoption of these technologies, I believe, will continue across industries. Business leaders need to understand the potential and power of analytics and AI on their businesses. Business leaders must ask themselves: How can I take advantage of data? How can I get a better idea about my customers needs?
AI and analytics can create agility in supply chains and distribution networks. It is possible, with this technology, to create new business models powered by data. With AI and analytics, data is the foundation. Data sets can be used for powering insights solutions that can optimize business processes, creating more agility so that business leaders can learn more about their customers and build new revenue channels.
Let’s face it, Covid-19 hit many industries hard like the travel and hospitality industries. Still, there is a lot of pent-up demand now that Covid-19 pandemic is slowly clearing. These industries now need resources to meet the demands. Across industries, there have been a shortage of skills, seen especially in the restaurant industry. Even truck drivers and warehouse workers are in a shortage. AI and analytics are increasingly needed to compensate for these shortages, and shortages of AI development skills. AI, algorithm, and automation jobs saw a huge gain.
According to me, AI will be critical in the post-pandemic world where skills need, and training will be more needed than ever. AI is already helping fill shortages of skills through career transition support tools. AI will also help employees do their jobs better and faster. With AI digital assistants, in-house AI-driven training programs and the like, we can train skills and help them work better.
AI helps to prevent or alleviate skills shortages. Support personnel, for example, help solve problems when it comes to digital products and other kinds of technology. A trained chatbot equipped with AI and analytics technology can answer basic and simple questions from customers. Natural language processing (NLP) can scan documents for canned phrases.
We know that it is difficult to assess the increases in productivity when new technology is adopted. However, AI and analytics technology can deliver productivity increases. The combination of machine learning algorithms developing, declining data storage prices, and improved computer power can change companies’ strategies from vision and speech to prediction and diagnosis.
AI and analytics can also help to increase the pace of innovation. There are lingering effects of the Covid-19 crisis on the economy. Many items, from lumber to semiconductors, are in short supply due to the pandemic-related disruptions. AI and analytics can predict, prepare, and see issues that may disrupt their abilities to deliver products and services. While many businesses are still trying to manually check their supply chains, AI is a great alternative. When AI is adopted, I predict companies will receive significant competitive differentiation.
Predicting supply chain disruptions and supply chain planning can benefit by AI because AI can handle the easy problems, freeing up workers to address complex supply chain-related problems. AI can also provide solutions and speed up the analysis of possible solutions.
AI is a blessing to start-ups as they can use the latest data-driven technologies to enter the newer markets (for them) with niche solutions. Start-ups can collaborate with other companies, like bigger organizations that can experiment with AI, and embrace the partnership and collaborative spirit. Companies are also able to compete with niche start-ups through AI as AI tests and iterates the potential opportunities.
In business, the next boom will be data-driven, of this, I am sure. There will be many opportunities for entrepreneurs to use AI and improve their businesses. Next-generation technologies — artificial intelligence and analytics — will play a key role in boosting business innovation and advancement in this environment, as well as spur new business models.