Our AI Point of View

“AI is the new electricity. Just as 100 years ago electricity transformed industry after industry, AI will now do the same.”— Andrew Ng Founder & Lead, Google Brain

What is AI?

This is one of the most frequently asked questions in regards to artificial intelligence (AI); broadly speaking AI is a “computer system(s) able to perform tasks that normally require human intelligence”. (This answer is normally followed up quickly by something about killer robots or AI’s that will take over the world…)
Just as Andrew Ng stated in the intro quote, AI is the new electricity, meaning it is the fuel by which we can transform our businesses.

In business the intention of AI is to bring intelligence to business processes through utilizing historical data in order to predict future outcomes. This can result in a better customer experience by receiving the right offer at the right time; or if you are a sales rep, knowing what lead needs to be followed up with next without spending 2 hours digging through records. (We’ll get into more use cases later in this article)

The point of AI in business is to enrich the users experience and enhance the function they are trying to perform.

How is AI changing our world?

To set the stage, let’s look back into our past. Over the past two centuries, we’ve progressed through 3 revolutions spanning from Steam to Electricity and onto Computing. Each one of these revolutions has caused a massive growth in the global economy and had huge impacts on how businesses function.

In the last several years we’ve begun the 4th revolution, which is building upon the immense data collection work starting at the beginning of the 3rd revolution. In this era, data is the fuel in industrial revolution. The intelligence revolution is using that fuel to provide potential that up to this point has been un-tapped.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution
The Fourth Industrial Revolution (Source: Salesforce)

AI is already making an impactful change to the companies that are choosing to be the early adopters; in IDC’s recent report they stated:

“IDC (International Data Corp) is already seeing that organizations using these technologies to drive innovation are benefitting in terms of revenue, profit, and overall leadership in their respective industries and segments.” – Boston Business Journey

With almost every major software company infusing AI into their platforms, it’s no longer a question of IF we need to bring AI into our businesses, it’s a matter of WHERE, WHEN and HOW.

How can AI be applied to your business?

As you’ve probably noticed recently, the word AI is used everywhere! This makes it very difficult as a business leader to understand tactically where AI can be applied in your business and what impact it can make. To cut through some of the smoke I’ve listed a few tactical examples across different industries where we’ve seen AI be successful.

  • HR
    • Candidate Application process – Improve the quality of your candidates experience, by surfacing relevant jobs to known candidates.
  • Sales
    • Lead Scoring – Prioritize your sales team efforts by scoring leads on their quality, the higher the score the more promising the lead they are. (We’ve seen this increase revenue by 25%!)
  • Marketing / eCommerce
    • Recommended Products – Recommendation are very common in the AI space, being able to determine what products should be shown next to items other items in a browsing experience can increase overall cart spend.
    • Next Best Offer – A challenge with marketing is keeping a consistent message across all channels; using AI you can ensure the user has the best offer based on what they’ve done in the past. This can extend into the service space by ensuring the next time a representative interacts with your customer they know what offer has been given and how they should follow up.
  • Service
    • Chatbot – Reduce the amount of time & cost your call centers have by allowing a chatbot be the first line of defense to answer questions.
    • Sentiment Analysis – Escalate support tickets to the appropriate level based on the sentiment of the customer, if frustration is detected you can escalate to get to a solution faster.
    • Support Recommend Articles – When solving a case, have the most applicable articles attached to open support cases to improve the time to resolve the case.


Our Approach to AI

You are probably thinking… “These are great, but where do I start? Or where should I apply AI?”

At the end of the day, as a company, you are looking for AI to provide ROI; which can come in multiple forms, whether that’s an increase in cart spend for eCommerce, a better customer experience, or reduced time it takes doctors to screen a patient.

At Horizontal, we help clients make the decisions necessary to identify the right use case and most importantly track ROI to any solutions that is put into place. We commonly work with businesses in these types of capacities to enable their implementation of AI:

  • Strategy – This work is the most important phase of any AI initiative, in this phase we curate a list of where AI can be applied and what are viable applications.
    • Executive Workshops
    • Use Case Definition
    • AI Roadmap & Prioritization
  • Platform Partnerships – This includes helping businesses identify and execute on any quick wins from platform based solutions they might already have, including Salesforce Einstein features.
    • Piloting
    • Feature Implementation
    • ROI Tracking
  • Analysis & Modeling – This work includes the full lifecycle of the machine learning or AI development cycle, from analysis of what data is available to refining / training a model.
    • Feature Engineering
    • Modeling

Wherever you’re at in your AI Journey, it’s important to keep the end in mind. The end goal of any injection of intelligence into your company should be an improved experience for a persona, whether that be internal or external.

If you’re interested in chatting more with our AI experts to talk about how we go about injecting intelligence into business, reach out to us through our contact us form: https://horizontalintegration.com/digital-agency


AI, Digital strategy