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Last time out we explored how natural language processing has changed our everyday lives, and this time I’m exploring how AI is changing the business world, through the rise of AI-assisted decision making. In this blog I explore 3 examples of AI in the organisational decision making process.


1. Augmented Analytics

One of the first applications of decision-assistance technology is the ability to compare and contrast data. Structured data (databases and spreadsheets) is the foundation of business intelligence, and the focus of many companies is to better visualise performance through dashboards. However, experts estimate that up to 90% of a company’s data is unstructured, leaving it unseen and un-mined. The ability to unlock this information, and surface it to senior management has significant potential to transform strategic decision making. Natural language processing AI is able to interpret unstructured data on mass and surface hidden insights. Information held in emails, managerial reports and department documents can be surfaced automatically. Sentiment, commonalities and trends are mainstays for NLP to identify, and companies that adopt AI gain the opportunity for deeper business intelligence which could turn into a competitive advantage.


2. Decision Intelligence

Once intelligence from unstructured company data is unlocked, senior managers gain deeper insight on how their organisation makes decisions. Historical precedent can be factored into decision making processes through the ability to compare a pending decision with similar, past decisions from across the organisation. For teams who work in compliance, risk or regulation functions, this strengthens their ability to correctly identify and minimise risk exposure. 

Improving your organisation’s ability to make the correct decision more consistently also has potential to improve talent management practices. Executives, over years of experience, develop tacit knowledge that can be critical to making good decisions. When the executive leaves, which is inevitable at some stage, the organisation loses their tacit knowledge. Succession planning has sought to solve this problem by ensuring smooth handovers while business continuity has looked to operationalise and standardise processes. However, neither have succeeded in being able to codify an executive’s intuitive decision making. This is where AI steps in, as not only is it possible to codify that intuition (through the application of standards and rules into predictive models), it is also infinitely scalable across an organisation.


3. Decision Management

Once AI is able to interpret and evaluate content, decision management can be rolled out. This is the process of automating repeated decisions, ranging from full deployment with end users (intelligent chatbots deployed as first line customer support) through to assisted decision making (pattern recognition on patient medical scans).

In both settings, AI is already having a significant impact. Customer support is a business function that has readily adopted AI in the form of intelligent chatbots. Telefonica and Microsoft, global names, have already fully evolved online support channels to include intelligent assistants. This reduces customer waiting times, frees up staff workload and reduces operational costs. 

Healthcare is another industry that has adopted AI in decision management, largely deployed in the screening of patient medical scans. The American College of Surgeons is already seeing AI outperform experienced clinicians in correctly identifying which patients require intensive post-op care, while the NHS Moorfield Eye Hospital pilot has seen AI achieve a 94% accuracy in diagnosis of eye conditions, an accuracy equivalent to the world’s leading eye experts.


What is next for AI in organisation decision making

Gartner forecast that within 5 years decision-assistance based AI will be a mass market technology across most sectors. It is easy to understand why. The transformational potential is significant given AI’s ability to reshape operating models through cost savings and quality of service simultaneously. Organisations who adopt AI early across decision making processes stand to carve out strong competitive advantages. If you’d like to explore AI assisted decision-making in your organisation we offer free consultations. Arrange one today by contacting us on or call 0121 638 0760.