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01 September 2022


How Artificial Intelligence Can Help Businesses Gain Competitive Advantage

What if we told you that artificial intelligence (AI) is the key to unlocking a competitive advantage in your industry?

While it might sound too good to be true—and we’ll be the first to admit that it takes a lot of work—developing a comprehensive AI strategy is almost guaranteed to give you a leg up over the competition. 

Need more proof? When Mastercard, a leading financial services organization, was facing a massive increase in credit card fraud (identity theft via credit card was up 44.6% from 2019 to 2020), they used AI-powered technology to identify emerging patterns of criminal activity before they became major problems. By using AI, they saw a three-time reduction in fraud

If you’re seeking more AI-powered inspiration, read on. We have five more examples to dig into with you. 

How Can You Leverage AI for Competitive Advantage? 

Mastercard is just one example of the monumental impact AI can have on your organization—let’s explore a few more ways AI can help you gain a competitive advantage in your industry. 

Streamlining Business Operations, Processes, & Workflows 

Unnecessarily complex, time-consuming processes drain employee productivity, specifically if those processes require attention from multiple people. By infusing AI into these processes, businesses can automate administrative, mundane tasks and leave the higher-level jobs to human workers. 

According to Harvard Business Review, managers spend most of their time on administrative and coordination tasks. About 84% of them agree that AI technology can lift that burden, allowing them to focus their expertise on training a more capable workforce rather than being bogged down in paperwork. 

Coca-Cola has taken advantage of RPA (Robotic Process Automation) capabilities to optimize operational performance, and as a result, they have shifted from an 8-hour workday to a 24-hour workday with no additional staff. Now, the team can focus on tasks that require a human touch, like providing personal, positive customer experiences. 

Drive Innovation and Increase Revenue 

Innovators across industries attribute at least 20% of their organization’s EBIT (Earnings Before Interest and Taxes) to AI. 

The retail company Gap is the perfect example—they invested in AI and data analytics to solve key bottlenecks, such as predicting product demand. Leveraging demand forecasting helped them understand their customers better, manage their inventory more efficiently, and adjust their pricing to maximize profits. 

Having an intelligent AI system in place can often help businesses take advantage of unrealized opportunities in the market—using the insights from demand forecasting, companies like Gap can even determine which trends are about to take off, tailoring their designs to meet consumer needs. 

Manage Risk 

With risk management, AI allows businesses to detect, prevent, and avoid ever-present threats. Cognitive technologies powered by AI, like natural language processing (NLP), evaluate and analyze unstructured data using cutting-edge algorithms.

These algorithms can parse large amounts of data and identify any abnormalities, then flag those abnormalities as potential fraud, identity theft, etc. In this way, NLP can stop bad actors in their tracks. 

Almost two-thirds of large financial institutions have suffered a cyberattack in the past year—to counter this, banks and financial institutions are turning to AI and ML to automate and streamline front and back office processes, facilitate decision-making processes, reduce credit risk, and offer tailored financial services. 

One bank leveraging the power of AI in consumer finance is JPMorgan Chase. They use a proprietary algorithm to detect fraudulent patterns every time a credit card transaction is processed.

The transaction details are sent to central computers in the bank’s data centers in real-time, which then analyze and decide whether or not these transactions are fraudulent. Chase’s resulting high score in reliability and security earned it second place in the 2020 US Banking Digital Trust survey by Insider Intelligence. 

Create Sustainable Business Growth 

While there’s currently no mandatory sustainability reporting standard worldwide, it’s likely coming in the near future. And, regardless of what’s necessary, more and more companies are rallying around sustainability goals like net-zero carbon emissions by a particular date or reducing water waste by a certain amount. 

AI is a proven partner to enterprises who want to continue rapid growth without skimping on their sustainability goals. OYAK Cimento, a Turkish-based cement manufacturing company, recently started using AI to reduce their carbon emissions.

Their goal is to reduce energy consumption—by leveraging AI, they’ve been able to analyze their current processes, identify inefficiencies, and use those insights to improve their production rates in less time. 

In addition to helping the environment, organizations who commit to sustainability are also helping themselves—using AI to reduce waste and CO2 emissions helps your enterprise become a meaner, leaner machine and it improves your customers’ perception of your brand, all at once. 

Stay Ahead of the Competition 

In the next five years, the businesses that see the most growth will be those that successfully leverage AI. (We’re willing to bet on that.)

That’s because AI can enable businesses to analyze customer data, identify their behavioral patterns, and target the right customers with the right products at the right time—giving them the ultimate advertising leg up. 

Globally recognized retailers like Amazon are already leveraging AI. If you ever scroll through the home page of your Amazon account, you’ll notice that all of the products shown have been tailored to you.

Amazon utilizes your browsing history, items you’ve saved to your wishlist, time you spend on various pages, and previous product ratings to generate recommendations that best suit your taste and preferences. That’s why scrolling through your home page can be so tempting! 

When businesses leverage AI, they’re able to understand customers at a deeper level and offer exceptional customer experience, thus increasing ROI. A recent Forrester report indicated that data science users see four times increase in ROI and expect that figure to increase six times in the next 2 to 3 years. 

Leverage the Power of AI 

If you take away one thing from this blog post, let it be this: the time to get started is today.  

AI can impact almost every part of your business, from the supply chain to the shop floor to the storefront—but, seeing amazing improvement in these areas isn’t without its own incredible efforts. It’s up to you and your team to align and rally around the potential of AI so you can set yourselves apart from the pack and set yourselves up as a market leader. 

If you’re seeking more inspiration for how AI can impact your business, check out 50 ways our clients have used AI across their enterprises. 

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