For the study, Accenture surveyed 1,500 C-suite executives from companies with a minimum revenue of $1 billion in 12 countries, across 16 industries.. Photo: iStock
For the study, Accenture surveyed 1,500 C-suite executives from companies with a minimum revenue of $1 billion in 12 countries, across 16 industries.. Photo: iStock

AI not limited to pilot projects, now helps companies improve efficiency

Global consulting firm Accenture’s ‘AI: Built to Scale’ study said companies are using AI to enhance customer service, productivity, brand perception, working capital utilization and to plan new product offerings

BENGALURU : The use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is not just confined to pilot projects, with AI and related technologies now actively being leveraged to enhance various key processes in companies across the world, according to a new study.

Global consulting firm Accenture’s ‘AI: Built to Scale’ study said companies are using AI to enhance customer service, productivity, brand perception, working capital utilization and to plan new product offerings. For the study, Accenture surveyed 1,500 C-suite executives from companies with a minimum revenue of $1 billion in 12 countries, across 16 industries.

Although a majority of companies surveyed are still stuck at conducting AI experiments, a small but growing group of organisations across the globe have successfully used AI to improve efficiency.

A major North American technology company required a dynamic integrated approach for its vast and complex supply chain. Open source machine learning (ML) tools were used to analyse demand uncertainty, cost drivers, customer relationships, and rate of technological change. This resulted in a personalised supply chain transformation with AI at the core, driving new efficiency - 30% faster speed to delivery with more accurate forecasting. Operating income increased by 45%, and manufacturing and freight costs decreased 25%, the study said.

Top officials of Indian companies in this domain say that AI can help improve productivity, delivery of services, customer experience and customer satisfaction.

Swapnil Jain, co-founder and CEO, Observe.ai, an AI-powered voice customer service platform believes in "using AI to improve human performance".

“There are so many opportunities to do all of the things listed with AI, particularly to improve working capital utilisation and productivity. We believe the $300 billion-customer service industry is one of the most prime areas for AI disruption due to the amount of tedious work that is done by millions of agents, quality analysts, and supervisors around the world," Jain said, in an e-mailed response to questions from Mint.

“In particular, we believe the biggest opportunity today is to use AI to automate some tedious parts of the quality assurance process, such as call selection and scoring, while offering targeted, data-driven coaching to agents," he said. "In the near future we see opportunities to augment agents and supervisors with voice insights on live calls to improve the customer experience. With the deep insights you can get from analysing 100% of your calls with technologies like Natural Language Processing and AI, you open up massive opportunities to drive efficiencies and improve agent coaching and training."

Heath tech startup Niramai offers a radiation-free, non-invasive breast cancer screening solution for hospitals and diagnostic centers. Their core technology uses a high-resolution thermal sensing device and cloud-hosted AI-based solution to analyze thermal images.

Dr Geetha Manjunath, CEO and CTO of Niramai, believes that more startups will leverage AI for their unique solutions and it may become imperative that they use AI.

“AI-based applications are going to be seen making a huge difference in different domains. Almost every company today is deriving insights about the likes and dislikes of its customers by mining customer information. Product roadmaps are mainly determined based on such learnings about gaps in the product, improving customer satisfaction and delight," she said.

She added that healthcare is also seeing increasing adoption of AI in improving patient experience, healthcare delivery and quality care.

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