Posts Tagged

ai tools for workking remotely

10 Benefits of Artificial Intelligence You Didn’t Know Before

benefits of artificial intelligence

AI refers to a computer system that is trained to perform tasks with human-like abilities, especially cognitive abilities. The training process includes repetitive exposure to the same elements until the computer can recognize and recall those elements in future. As the computer learns, it also acquires the ability to self-correct and reason. That’s a simple example of the benefits of artificial intelligence.

The AI market is still growing. Predictions show that by 2026, demand for AI will reach over $300 billion. According to a voice and speech recognition trends report from Grand view Research, a big driver of this growth is voice and speech recognition, which is expected to grow by 17.2% annually until 2025.

The growth of voice and speech recognition software is already evident in products such as Alexa (Amazon devices), Siri (Apple devices), Cortana (Microsoft) and Google Assistant (Android). There has also been a remarkable attempt by new brands to curve their space alongside these big players. A good example is Aira, an AI assistant that has transformed the online meeting space with its intuitive note taking and minute taking ability.  


What are the benefits of Artificial Intelligence?

The true benefits of Artificial Intelligence are realized when it can make human work easier or more efficient. For example, some AI can find insights in large bodies of data within mere minutes. Such a task would take a human being many hours, or even days to accomplish. In addition, in a factory, AI can automate repetitive tasks that usually take hours to complete.

Note that in a business, AI is not created to replace humans, but to support them in their daily functions. As a result, your company will notice these improvements:  

  • Reduced cost of business
  • Speedy and more efficient workflows
  • Higher sales conversions
  • Faster hiring processes
  • Highly accurate and improved recommender system
  • Better revenue and profits


Let’s expound on these and more benefits of artificial intelligence implementation below:

10 benefits of Artificial Intelligence you didn’t know about

1. Automating workflows

30% of activities in 60% of occupations can be automated. This is according to a 2017 study conducted by Mckinsey. Since AI can automate tasks, integrating a personal assistant into your business will help you streamline some of your activities.

With the market for workflow management systems expected to grow to $9.9 billion by 2021, AI will play a crucial part in realizing these predicted numbers, by driving more productivity in:

  • Main business functions such as sales, marketing, customer service, HR, production, supply chain management
  • Project management

2. Time management both at office and personal level

Top executives in a company usually have a personal assistant to handle administrative tasks for them. For other employees, the burden of having to worry about scheduling meetings, arranging travel, following up on client correspondence, etc., can get in the way of daily productivity.

AI can help businesses optimize their time by automating such tasks. With tools such as Cortana, Siri, Aira, among others, you can automate tasks such as:

  • Emailing 
  • Meeting management
  • Note taking
  • Planning business travel and accommodation

3. Meeting scheduling

Image credits: Pixabay.com

Meeting scheduling can take up a lot of an employee’s time. Done manually, scheduling a meeting takes a lot of coordination and planning. The back and forth emailing involved to make one meeting happen can overwhelm employees’ inboxes and also waste a lot of time.

This is yet another area that Aira excels in, as it takes the hustle out of meeting management by syncing calendars and automatically scheduling meetings based on team members’ availability.

4. Enterprise assistant

You have probably heard of Cortana, Microsoft’s virtual assistant. What you may not know is that besides the core functionalities that are inbuilt into Cortana, Microsoft has a skills kit that can enable you to program Cortana to perform company-specific tasks.

The Cortana skills kit was released during a conference in 2018. Prior to its release, the team at Microsoft trained Cortana to create tickets for employees whose computers were experiencing system difficulties, and then file those tickets to a human assistant to assist. Although that is just one skill, it is a clear indication of the possibilities for trainable AI. You can train Cortana to assist you in your work, no matter the industry you work in. Cortana can for instance:

  • Send texts and emails
  • Find places and information
  • Send you reminders
  • Manage your lists and calendar
  • Open and run aps
  • Track orders and packages
  • Track flights

You can also use Alexa to perform most of these tasks.

5. Arrange travel

If you or your team constantly need to travel, an AI app that automates flight and hotel bookings is sure to be a time saver.

In addition to Cortana which we have mentioned above, Mezi is a great example of how AI can help you with travel arrangements. Such AI utilizes chatbots to automate mundane travel arrangement tasks, leaving you to handle only the most important transactions.

6. Improving sales  

AI for Sales
Image credits: Pexels.com

A study conducted by Gartner in 2018 found that by 2020, 30% of b2b companies will make use of AI to boost some of their sales processes. In addition, 25% of customer service processes will integrate chatbots or virtual assistants.

The benefits of Artificial Intelligence adoption in business functions are evident. Some of them include:

  • AI can boost lead conversion rate by 30% (Gartner)
  • AI use in sales results in 50% increase in leads, reduces costs by up to 60% and call times by up to 70% (Harvard Business Review )
  • 63% of a salesperson time is spent on non-selling activities. AI can positively improve sales by automating this time. (resourcefulSelling.com)

There are quite a number of AI assistants in the sales space such as Conversica, Exceed, Drift, Node, Sales Force’s Einstein, among others.

7. Handling the recruitment process

Companies spend an average of $4000 to recruit a new employee. In addition, you lose up to 33% of an employee’s annual pay whenever they leave. Given these high costs, you want to avoid hiring mistakes as much as possible.

However, the tasks involved in recruiting candidates can be quite involving. For instance, every application received has to be read and screened. As such, mistakes are bound to happen, resulting in wrong hires.

AI assistants such as Mya reduce recruitment friction by cross-referencing resumes against job descriptions to find the most suitable candidates. You can also use the AI app to schedule interviews, create interview questions and shortlist candidates.

8. Improve customer response time with chatbots

Chatbot
Image credits: Pexels.com

Customers value fast response time when dealing with a business. A sure way to guarantee this is by using chatbots. Chatbots

  • Keep business going after official working hours
  • They respond to simple queries that don’t need live staff
  • They manage expectations by acknowledging that a query has been noted and will receive attention

As with most technologies, chatbot adoption was a little slow at first; people just weren’t comfortable talking to a machine. More so, first generation chatbots were simple platforms.

Today’s chatbots however are more sophisticated, conversational AI that help to

  • Streamline enterprise activities,
  • Hence boost employee productivity, and
  • Improve customer engagement

Not only can you integrate chatbots into your website, but you can also use twitter’s and Facebook’s AI assistants to improve customer handling on those platforms.  Your developers can actually create AI chatbots on Facebook’s platform design kit  and twitter’s API platform, and personalize them to suit your brand.

9. Create opportunities for personalization

Marketers experience a 20% increase in sales performance when they offer a personalized experience. In the same vein, 40% of customers are likely to buy from a brand that sends them personalized content. (Source: Instapage)

To personalize, you need to understand your customers’ needs and then target them with offers that will resonate with their position in the buyer’s journey. This needs time, money and expertise, which may be challenging for a business operating on a small budget. AI can simplify this process by analyzing data from different touchpoints and

  • Segment your customers,
  • Predict customer intent, hence,
  • Target customers with the right content and offers.

10. Forecasting 

Forecasts are a normal part of an organization’s planning process. Companies use forecasting tools to make decisions regarding

  • Inventory levels
  • Product demand
  • New product development
  • Purchase of raw requirements
  • Economics such as profitability, inflation and interest

Forecasts are critical to the long term health of a business. The process therefore has to incorporate all key information sets. More so, forecasting must be conducted in a timely and efficient manner. That is where AI systems such as neural nets and Bayes networks come in.

With Neural nets for instance, you can look for relationships in data using human-like cognitive processes such as pattern recognition. Tasks such as forecasting employee turnover based on data parameters such as pay, education level, attendance, job level, use neural nets.


Conclusion

As you can see, the use cases for artificial intelligence in business are many, and the benefits of artificial intelligence are endless. As AI continues to develop, it will inevitably converge with other areas of life. As a business, you want to be at the forefront of this curve so that you harness the limitless technological possibilities that are sure to come with an AI-led business world.

How AI Is Changing the Dynamics of Working Remotely

working remotely

Sir Richard Charles Nicholas Branson is a risk-taker. He breaks all known business rules and is a force to reckon with in the global commerce. He says “yes” to new ideas, pursuits, and novel concepts and is a prophet as well. In 2018, for instance, he predicted that the work environment as we knew it was about to undergo a seismic shift. 

In his blog post, Branson divined that the five-work, the two-day weekend system would end as the use of technology in the workplace increased. People would find work and play inseparable, mashing it all up in a new way of living. He mentioned that they were embracing flexible working at Virgin, saying that most employees back then were working remotely or wishing that they could.

The ongoing COVID-19 epidemic has been catastrophic for the hotel, airline, and travel industry. Like many airlines in the world, Virgin Atlantic is on the red, forcing its employees to go on weeks of unpaid leave.

His foresight into the virtues of working remotely may not have salvaged his main line of business. Nevertheless, working remotely technology powered by artificial intelligence has become the lifeline for millions of other employees from all parts of the world.


The history of remote work

It is difficult to envision it, but less than two decades ago, remote work was not a possibility. The technology that aids the work-from-anywhere type of flexibility did not exist. Your business partners and colleagues back then would have to reach you via a fax number, pager, or alternative phone number, if you were out of the office.

There were no remote emails, direct messaging, and video conferencing, or texting facilities. The only successful remote worker back then was a customer service assistant or telemarketer working at the minimum wage. Flash forward to 2020, and the coronavirus epidemic has turned most employees to remote workers.

Workers are adjusting to working remotely from home measures, but holding meetings via AI-powered teleconferencing software such as Zoom or Slack. Managers are turning to Trello and ProofHub for their project management needs, and Confluence, Google Drive, or  Microsoft Teams to aid collaboration.

Startups such as Zoom, have become so central to business teleconferencing software needs, that its daily users have spiked by 380% in one year. In the first two months of the year, Zoom has gained 2.2 million new users, a number greater than that the business acquired in the whole of 2019.


How AI is changing the dynamics of working remotely

Image credits: Unsplash.com

The use of artificial intelligence can help employees and employers manage the age of remote work in this time of economic and psychological distress. Machine powered assistance can mitigate the loss of worker productivity and push business back to peak performance.

The use of AI-powered remote work technology and communication tools can help workers displaced from their office setups by the epidemic to adjust to home workspaces. As an illustration, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many front line managers were struggling with unproductivity in the workplace.

As per a Gallup study, bad management was causing a loss of $400 billion worth of revenue from businesses in a year. These managers and their employees have been booted out from the office environment in a dramatic fashion, complicating the managers’ role in managing yield.

The day’s manager must learn how to work remotely first, something all employees were unprepared for. The risk of an increased loss of productivity is, therefore, remarkably high as morale amongst the workforces diminishes amid social isolation and self-distancing measures.

Fortunately, these looming losses can be mitigated via the use of AI-powered working remotely tools. Businesses need to emphasize the use of these tools as managers support employees facing rising home-based and economic pressures. 

AI tools can offer personalized, prioritized recommendations on employee management by tapping into a business’s pool of data. Such measures will help employees increase their productivity and protect their jobs.


The best AI remote tool stack for 2020

The choice of the best working remotely tools for your employees is comparable to the art of hiring the best person for the job. AI tools will streamline operations, structure, and hold your business together, keeping it on the road to maturity.

There are wide varieties of tools out there, which cater to different aspects of remote work. There are for instance AI tools that cater to;

  • Internal communications
  • Business management
  • Hiring
  • Business development
  • Internal communications
  • Communications with vendors and customers
  • Collaboration
  • Remote access


The best AI remote work tools

1. Slack

Slack

Slack is a 100% internal messaging bot that will keep your business’s data within its confines. The AI’s interface is fun to use and very user friendly. Through this app, your managers can initiate projects, deploy new code, hire an employee, finalize a budget, or review contracts.

The Slack bot will enhance reachability and productivity, building up a much-needed sense of togetherness for remote teams. The agile and intuitive app enhances communication by eliminating clutter. The employees can use it to play by sharing gifs, and work sharing codes, links, and files.


2. Zoom

Zoom

Zoom is one of the newest kids on the block in the world of teleconferencing. Businesses have, in the past, relied on other robust applications from Skype, Google, Cisco, and GoToMeeting in the past for video conferencing before Eric Yuan’s Zoom came by. Consequently, everyone thought that Zoom was stepping in into a saturated market.

Yuan, however, had one ace up his sleeve. His bot was enjoyable to use, unlike its buggy code filled opponents. Today Zoom is the most popular business-oriented video meeting app out there. The AI tool has features such as ease of setup, cloud recording, user management, and round the clock support.


3. Aira

Aira

In the meeting room of the future, remote teams will gather, collaborate, and generate ideas with the help of AI-powered tools. These platforms will improve the individual’s experience of the meeting room, making virtual post-it notes, and making idea suggestions.

AIRA is making this future a current reality. She is a virtual AI meeting assistant that will join web conferencing calls, take notes, and highlight all key action points for you. She will also share the meeting notes with all collaborators, ensuring that your focus stays on problem-solving and the conversations at hand. 


4. 1Password

1Password

One of the significant challenges that business entities have faced in the COVID-19 work from home environment is growing cybersecurity issues. Most organizations lack robust security protocols, experience, or technology for safe remote workforces. First, most employees do not know what the best work from home cybersecurity standards are. 

As an illustration, they will use access to public networks without a VPN or save sensitive business data on their gadgets.  Weak or stolen passwords can compromise the safety of the entire organization. 1Password is an AI bot that protects passwords for businesses. The bot stores all passwords in a secure hub and avails analytics on password access and usage.


5. Lattice

Lattice

Lattice is the perfect AI tool for performance management. Through it, you can trail your business’s goal tracking needs via a dedicated dashboard. Your remote employees will also flourish since Lattice has a useful “praise” feature that allows managers and their teams to publicly recognize each other’s efforts.

There are performance appraisals and people management tools that help to create high performing remote work teams while building winning cultures for businesses.


6. Toggl

Toggl

If your business’s employees working remotely are paid by the hour, with Toggl, you will have an effective and reliable time tracking tool. All that users of Toggl need to do is to click the start button to ensure that time spent on any project is well recorded. When they are done with the work, they will click on the bot’s stop button.

Its idle detection and tracking reminders mechanism will keep your workers more productive. It will also provide analytics of downtimes by client or project in an organized format. Toggl ensures that all employees are rewarded appropriately, giving real data about labor.


7. x.ai

The coordination of appointments, schedules, and meetings can be problematic in a remote work setting. Fortunately, AI tools such as x.ai can automate these processes and enhance productivity. The AI assistant tool, also known as Amy or Andrew, will connect with a team’s calendars and coordinate meeting times.

All team members will choose the best scheduled time as Amy’s coordination skills shine. You will find that the x.ai bot is very easy to delegate to and ultra-reliable.


Conclusion

The growing adoption of AI remote working tools is ensuring that employees can work reliably and safely in a changing work environment. They are encouraging a cultural change, transforming employee collaboration as office workers settle to a life away from the office. These tools are keeping teams engaged, driving the human element that employees thrive on.

Through them, team leaders and managers can keep motivating, interacting, and engaging staff compassionately and effectively. The remote working environment is no longer a prophecy for the future, but a working policy for the day, thanks to AI remote work tools.