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In Search of Actionable AI

In this special guest feature, Dr. Gero Decker, Co-Founder and CEO of Signavio, believes not every organization is fully prepared when bringing in AI, and that’s okay. Work with team leaders to figure out what is weighing down their team’s productivity and figure out what steps you can take as an organization to lighten or eliminate these challenges. Utilizing a process management technology solution can help you most effectively determine what these challenges are by looking at your organization as a whole. Gero is responsible for the Company’s overall strategic direction. He is a business process management expert and passionate about product innovation. Before creating Signavio, he worked for SAP and McKinsey. Gero holds a PhD in Business Process Management from Hasso-Plattner-Institute.

Many organizations think they need to adopt AI for the sake of having advanced technologies. But in reality, and most often, automation is a way to improve the processes and workflows you already have, an aspect often overlooked. Worldwide spending on AI is anticipated to be over $35 Billion for 2019 but without taking the time to ensure your processes and workflows are optimizing your investment, those resources could be wasted.1

Recent reports show 65% of US business executives have not yet seen value from the AI investments made in recent years.2 Part of this could be due to a lack of understanding of the organization’s process management. Without taking a close look at the functions being performed in your business and how they interact, it can be nearly impossible to implement technology effectively. Optimizing how and why processes are being done will lead to better use of available AI tools and/or being able to see your ROI sooner. In fact, utilizing a leading provider of business transformation solutions has been shown to deliver a 123% ROI and generate paybacks in under 6 months.3

Actionable AI with a Human Touch

Until tasks are 100% automated, process management and process mining play critical roles in uncovering how your employees work and your organization operates. With the autonomous enterprise still 10-40 years away for many businesses, process mining provides visibility into how much operations have already been simplified and streamlined and where an organization is on the technology journey. Even if businesses are operating at 98/99% automation, many parts of the process could still go wrong. Human interaction is, therefore, a critical element for enhancing and controlling what is being accomplished through AI. Getting humans involved with AI will be critical to any organization’s success.

Best Practices

Make sure your organization is already running at an optimal level. Introducing AI into a system that has unnecessary processes and steps can further delay implementation or just make a broken process faster. Examining your processes closely will allow you to make sure the right tasks are being automated, versus a system that is unprepared or not streamlined correctly.

Starting small and working with manageable teams or “star players” in order to see true organizational change is one of the most effective ways to achieve truly actionable AI. Work closely with a small team to see how and where improvements can be made. During that time, figure out who has had a positive experience with the program and ask them to help share the benefits they have found with others at the organization. This will allow their peers to approach them with questions they might not be as open to discussing with upper management. It is also helpful if this person can explain the tool to colleagues in a familiar way.

Expect Pushback

Anticipate that there will be pushback. When Facebook changes its layout, everyone seems to hate it for the first couple weeks, but eventually as we become more familiar with it, we embrace it until the next iteration. Understanding these ebbs and flows and working with teams to manage expectations and troubleshoot will help get everyone back on the same page. Keeping open lines for communications will also help upper management understand issues and work together with employees on how they can best be solved.

Not every organization is fully prepared when bringing in AI, and that’s okay. Work with team leaders to figure out what is weighing down their team’s productivity and figure out what steps you can take as an organization to lighten or eliminate these challenges. Utilizing a process management technology solution can help you most effectively determine what these challenges are by looking at your organization as a whole. As humans, we are subject to forget details or label certain processes as unimportant to us personally. Having an enterprise-wide view can better improve inter-team communication and pinpoint which areas have become no longer effective. Anticipating roadblocks from employees and troubleshooting solutions can help ease the road to a more actionable AI journey.

Sources:

1https://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS44911419

2 https://www.forbes.com/sites/gilpress/2019/10/17/ai-stats-news-65-of-companies-have-not-seen-business-gains-from-their-ai-investments/#797fd0f719f4

3 https://view-signavio.highspot.com/viewer/5d9de0656a3b11715d1c566f

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