In June of 2017, a McKinsey discussion paper covering the impact of AI in the business world was released. It's predominant theme is summarized by the following statement from the paper:
Artificial intelligence is poised to unleash the next wave of digital disruption, and companies should prepare for it now.
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) also published a report titled Sizing the Prize in the 3rd quarter of 2017 whose conclusions largely concur with those reached by the McKinsey paper discussed above. The PwC report provides analyses and comparative estimates of AI's potential impact for several different industry sectors, and claims that “the impact [of AI] on productivity could be competitively transformative – businesses that fail to adapt and adopt could quickly find themselves undercut on turnaround times as well as costs. They stand to lose a significant amount of their market share as a result.”
The 2017 Forbes article How Artificial Intelligence is Revolutionizing Business in 2017 summarizes the findings in the MIT Sloan Management Review article Reshaping Business with Artificial Intelligence. Among the findings in this article, based on a survey with a broad and sizeable range of business leaders, is the observation that in spite of the fact that “84% of respondents say AI will enable them to obtain or sustain a competitive advantage”, “only 23% of respondents have incorporated [AI] into processes and product and service offerings today.” To be fair, another 23% of the respondents indicated that they at least have AI pilot projects underway. Despite this, over half of the respondents had not yet adopted AI in any of their company processes.
The MIT article summary states “One sizeable difference [between companies that are leaders in understanding and adopting AI, and companies that lag behind] is their approach to data. AI algorithms are not natively ‘intelligent.’ They learn inductively by analyzing data. While most leaders are investing in AI talent and have built robust information infrastructures, other companies lack analytics expertise and easy access to their data.”
In short, to maintain a competitive advantage in the future, businesses in nearly all economic sectors will need to adapt their processes to incorporate the benefits offered by AI technologies. Without planning for this, a company will eventually lose any competitive edge it might once have had to its competitors that have embraced AI in their processes and products.
Edgington Engineering's years of experience in doing hands-on research and implementation of AI in the business and manufacturing world underpins our ability to advise your company on effective ways of incorporating AI into your existing processes or products in order to maximize the impact on your bottom line. The process we follow begins with information-gathering and listening, followed by formulating potential plans jointly with company decision-makers, and finally after iterating on the first two steps, executing pilot projects that have been identified as having the potential to largely impact the company's bottom line. Interested in exploring more? Drop us a line!