Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a hot topic in today’s world. At the same time, on a practical and operational level, for a lot of organizations AI can be a tedious subject.
Start with Artificial Intelligence
AI's potential is expected to be far-reaching with capabilities to really transform businesses and their way of working already in the near future. Where do you start with AI, how will it impact your business and where can it strengthen your business?
In this AI spectrum, Cognitive Intelligence sits between RPA and Machine Learning and focuses on the automation of human thought, analysis and decision-making capabilities. It’s one step up from RPA (Robotic Process Automation) where the focus tends to be on more basic and repetitive business processes which are typically driven by structured data, and comes just before Machine Learning, a fascinating but complex field of AI which today still has limited direct application areas in general business.
The field of Cognitive Intelligence (CI) is fast growing new area of software automation with a direct impact on the efficiency of organizations. It’s a technology that is relatively quick to implement, especially when deployed as a platform, and is focused on the more complex processes within an organization, both in the back-office as in the front-office. So typical areas where strong ROI’s are seen are in HR (absence management & reintegration, maternity leave, etc), in Finance (accounts payable, accounts receivable, vendor management, etc.) as well as in Shared Service Centers, Customer Service, Claims Management, etc.
Therefore, for organizations that want to get a feel for what AI and AI related technologies can do for them, Cognitive Intelligence is an ideal place to start.
Putting knowledge at the center of your business
Staff in key back-office and front-office functions are typically well educated and have a broad level of experience. This staff is typically referred to as Knowledge-Workers, important value-added resources that tend to be difficult to replace. Resources that at the same time are often exposed to tedious, complex and repetitive processes that involve the collection of data and information from a wide range of disparate systems. Information that comes in different formats, both structured and un-structured (contracts, forms, correspondence, email, etc.). Information that needs to be gathered, ordered, analyzed and interpreted before decisions can be made. These are ideal business process to be automated through the use of Cognitive Intelligence, creating Cognitive Apps or Cognitive Agents.
Cognitive Intelligence allows for the automated simulation of the analysis-work and decision-making done by front-office and back-office experts:
- the automated gathering if any information necessary for the specific case at hand, from virtually any source, nature and format: external databases, applications, contracts, forms, correspondence, etc.;
- the automated analysis and interpretation of this information, in-line with the knowledge, experience and procedures as available internally;
- the automated decision making, based on this information, the knowledge, rules, experience, etc. Either independently making the process completely autonomous or in support of the agent/expert, leaving them in control but dramatically increase their efficiency.
CI and the Competitive Advantage
Some of the advantages of cognitive applications are:
- Faster response times, due to automated information gathering, interpretation, analysis and decision making;
- Higher efficiency around expert back-office and front-office resources, by alleviating them from the tedious and repetitive process of gathering, interpreting and analyzing information and supporting them with the actual decision-making process, better use is made of their time and skills;
- Greater job satisfaction, due to the fact that expert staff can focus on areas where they add value and that all the repetitive tedious information gathering and analysis work is automated;
- Greater flexibility, due to the fact that a lot of the knowledge and experience around certain expert rolls and procedures is built into the CI system, it becomes easier to blend, circulate and hire staff;
- Happier clients, either internal or external, as recipients of the different services, due to the fact that they get answers on their requests much quicker;
- Consistency of policy, due to the automation of the processes and related decision-making consistency in the actual outcome is guaranteed and any internal policies as defined are safeguarded.