Artificial Intelligence in industry is no longer a futuristic technology but a reality present in various sectors. In Spain, more and more companies are adopting AI as a strategic tool to improve their business processes and stay competitive in an ever-changing global environment.
The adoption of Artificial Intelligence, however, requires a cultural change in the company in order to optimize the value provided by this technology, with the consequent challenges. In the following sections we will analyze the benefits and best practices for implementing this type of technology with the lowest risk and maximum utilization.
Benefits of Artificial Intelligence in companies
Implementing AI in business processes offers a number of key advantages for companies. Speed in making data-driven decisions, the ability to provide fast, 24×7 responses to changing situations are crucial factors in maintaining a competitive advantage in today’s marketplace.
Additionally, the implementation of Artificial Intelligence in the value chain of companies allows the automation of processes that are traditionally intensive in the use of human resources, freeing up people’s time, which they can devote to more value-added tasks, completing the virtuous circle in the improvement of the company’s competitive capacity.
The automation provided by AI is applicable in a multitude of industry processes, ranging from the demand forecasting and the inventory optimizationto the command and control systemsin assembly lines as well as in production planning, including the ability to anticipate failures in assets, improve the quality of the products, and optimize energy consumption or the carbon footprint of companies, achieving tangible improvements in costs and in the tasks that provide value for the company.
In short, AI enables the best decisions to be made thanks to its ability to anticipate possible incidents and/or trends, and to provide lines of action based on data.
Risks and fears surrounding Artificial Intelligence in industry.
One of the biggest challenges in adopting technologies such as AI is resistance to change and fear of job losses. It is crucial for companies to understand the need to adapt and match technological change with the required societal change in the way they understand the business and its processes as they adapt to a “data-driven enterprise” vision. The adoption of technology is as important as the education and training of workers in the new technologies; technology alone is not capable of providing all the performance that can be achieved in the hands of people who know how and want to use it.
Employee training will allow the staff to identify covert use cases that will further optimize the initial use cases implemented in the company.
For this reason, one of the main factors that will determine the success of the adoption of this or any new technology will be the willingness of the workforce to acquire new knowledge and skills, and to adapt to this change and take advantage of the opportunities that AI brings.
As for fears about AI development, stopping research in this area does not seem feasible, nor desirable by many of the players in the market; no one wants to stop advancing in an area that has shown, and continues to show, spectacular progress every day.
It is necessary to develop legislation that guarantees a friendly and safe integration, in case AI reaches a level of singularity in which it presents certain levels of self-awareness (assuming that the scientific community will eventually determine what “being aware” implies). The potential of AI is so promising for humanity that it seems neither possible nor desirable to dismiss or slow it down without compelling reasons that actually demonstrate the “danger” that is being referred to lately in certain media.
Artificial Intelligence, therefore, has to be treated as a “recommender” (recommender system), with more or less autonomy depending on the criticality and impact of the task, becoming the “recommending system”. ideal collaborative tool for decision makingThe company’s employees are relieved of the most burdensome and menial tasks. The adoption of AI-based mechanisms and tools in industry is an opportunity to improve productivity, team performance and employee satisfaction with the responsibilities assigned to them by their company.
Starting point for implementing AI in an enterprise
Adopting a data-driven approach is not a process that can be done on the fly, it requires employing a methodology and following steps to ensure success and provide measurable benefits to the organization.
The first step is to analyze the business processes. At this point, collaboration between the client and the AI consulting team is essential to identify concrete and measurable opportunities. From this analysis, the initial list of use cases for implementation is obtained.
Once the use cases have been identified, an analysis of the state of the company’s data policy and governance must be performed , and a strategy must be defined for the data needed for the established cases: availability, location, accessibility, existence of update and ingest policies, data quality, etc. Sometimes, depending on the degree of maturity in the management of business data, before starting the adoption of technologies such as artificial intelligence, it is essential to rationalize the company’s data policy and governance. This rationalization is always beneficial, as it provides a complete view of the business from the point of view of the data and the interrelationships between them. Additionally, it helps to identify gaps and blind spaces, as well as specific resource needs to fill them.
The gradual implementation of the identified use cases, prioritizing those that entail a lower implementation cost and greater benefit for the company, ensures a gradual and effective adoption of Artificial Intelligence in industry in the company’s processes while providing time for the workforce to embrace the cultural change necessary to get the most benefit from Artificial Intelligence.
Solutions offered by Grupo Oesía
Grupo Oesía presents itself as a strategic ally for the companies that wish to adopt the AI. It offers a wide range of services ranging from the identification of specific use cases for each company to the implementation, integration and deployment of the data ecosystem and AI models. to the implementation, integration and deployment of the data ecosystem and AI models tailored to individual tailored to individual needs.
The Oesia Group’s Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence Competence Center is dedicated to designing and deploying data infrastructures to obtain the best results from process automation, enabling companies to improve their competitiveness and adopt the “data driven” culture.
Which companies should adopt AI
AI is applicable in any business sector. Each industry has its own needs and maturity levels, which requires tailoring AI capabilities to each particular use case and business.
Contrary to popular belief, it is not necessary to invest heavily to adopt and deploy Artificial Intelligence models. From the simplest to the most complex use cases, it is possible to improve business competitiveness through a scalable and affordable adoption of AI.
The use of AI is not limited to large companies. Small companies can also benefit from automation in their value chains. It is a mistake to believe that AI implementation requires massive investments. By following a structured and controlled process, small and medium-sized companies can adopt AI in an affordable and phased manner, adapting it to their specific needs. Improving service quality, speed and adaptability to customers, based on business data, is critical to the survival and growth of small and medium-sized enterprises.
From skepticism to the future
Faced with an understandable initial skepticism, the recommendation we make from Grupo Oesía is to test with limited and controlled use cases that allow to measure quickly and reliably the benefits they provide, validating the initial hypotheses.
The tangible benefits to be gained in this initial test may persuade the more reluctant and demonstrate to them the potential of AI to improve the competitiveness and efficiency of their companies.
AI has the potential, as it is already doing in other sectors, to revolutionize Spanish industry. Companies that do not adopt this technology run the risk of being left behind in an increasingly competitive and global market.
The adoption of Artificial Intelligence in industry and its value chain offers numerous benefits to industrial companies: data-driven decision making, cost reduction, energy efficiency, or the ability to improve the sustainability of the company are just some of the aspects on which it has a direct impact, making Artificial Intelligence a necessity in the next five years, or ten at the most, if we want to compete on equal terms with the rest of the participants.
Companies that have already begun to deploy this technology have a head start; the rest, if they do not start down this path as soon as possible, will gradually disappear from the market, unable to compete at the same level as the others.
Manuel Gallardo, Director of Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence of the Oesía Group.