Over the next three years, embedded artificial intelligence (AI) will dramatically reshape the customer experience across nearly all industries, with most major businesses providing some type of AI-centred customer experience. Today, 43% of businesses are already leveraging some form of AI, according to Aberdeen Research.
AI is a way of providing new, novel experiences that are useful and helpful to people. “By 2021, most major businesses will provide some type of customer experience centred around AI,” confirmed Jerry Overton, DXC fellow and head of Artificial Intelligence at DXC Technology, in a recent blog post. IDC forecasts that spending on AI systems will more than double to $79.2 billion in 2022, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 38% over the 2018-2022 period.
Businesses exploring how best to take advantage of AI must focus on customers’ needs. AI is a tool that can help address those needs through increased customisation and personalised services.
To be successful, a business should brainstorm about customer experience strategy and objectives, and then use AI as a tool to make that experience happen.
AI has the potential to democratise access to information, services and convenience. Companies in virtually every industry can raise the level of customisation and personalised service provided “to all of their customers through the deployment of low-cost intelligent agents,” continued Overton. These software agents could augment and improve many important aspects of everyday life.
In addition to the cost savings realised by transferring lower-level, data entry tasks over to software, “with true AI, intelligent systems can assume the roles of advisors, managers and supervisors in complex organisations and situations,” he said. Chatbots will help organisations save time and money as they become ubiquitous in various industries. For example, Juniper research forecasts that chatbots will free up medical staff time and save countries’ healthcare systems around $3.7 billion by 2023. And, in banking, operational cost savings from using chatbots will reach $7.3 billion globally by 2023, up from an estimated $209 million in 2019, according to Juniper Research study findings.
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Five industries reshaped by AI
Every industry will be affected by AI — specifically this technology will drive the greatest transformation over the next three years in healthcare; travel, transportation & hospitality; and manufacturing, banking and insurance. Consider the following examples:
Regarding healthcare, Overton then explained that “overall, AI will enable the healthcare industry to provide better preventive care, reduce the length of hospital stays, and provide more effective follow-up care based on the consumer/patient’s individual needs, while cutting costs.” Smart kiosks can seamlessly link patient history and real-time biometrics information with physicians equipped with tablets or other mobile devices.
Similarly, medical data that is collected by IoT devices and transmitted wirelessly to a cloud-based AI analytics system can send alerts to a physician in the event of a potentially dangerous patient health data finding. AI has the power to provide smarter diagnoses and improve recommended treatment options.
2. Travel, Transportation and Hospitality
AI will enable a highly personalised travel experience: Making reservations for flights, rental cars, hotels and restaurants will be based on individual preferences, and alternate arrangements will be provided when travel is disrupted.
With long-haul trucking, air, sea and rail-based shipping, and localised delivery services, “AI can help companies squeeze inefficiencies out of these logistics-heavy industries throughout the entire supply chain,” wrote Overton. With AI, companies can reduce costs, determine the best routes, and overcome labor shortages while delivering better service to customers.
Self-driving or autonomous vehicles are another AI-based technology poised to disrupt the transportation industry. Self-driving trucks are “hitting the highways,” and autonomous vehicles will have a profound effect on a number of sectors, including delivery vehicles, public transportation, and personalised ride services.
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Overton, who leads the strategy and development for DXC’s Industrialised AI offering, continued: “With AI-based intelligent systems, manufacturers of all sizes could extend tailored services to their customers. Intelligent systems can help with product creation and design. Digital twin simulations can improve and optimise manufacturing processes. IoT sensors on the factory floor can connect to AI systems that can detect and predict potential maintenance or product quality issues.”
And with AI, companies can analyse data from real-time usage or social media on how customers are using their products so the companies can effectively implement improvements.
With AI, Overton suggested in his article that financial institutions could “provide personal services to all customers — enabled by chatbots, for example — to facilitate customer interactions and access to financial services. The result could be significant cost savings and increased revenue opportunities for banks, and a more personalised, financially advantageous banking experience for customers.”
Insurance companies could deploy AI to gain insight into their customers and to offer them personalised services. Beyond evaluating risk, insurance companies could use AI to proactively subsidise safer behaviour, such as correlating driving data from a car’s braking system to provide lower auto insurance rates for safe driving behaviour.
Elevating the customer experience
AI is a powerful tool that has the potential to transform our lives both personally and professionally. The technology has great potential and possibilities for helping enterprises resolve their most challenging business problems, achieve operational efficiencies and elevate the customer experience.
For more information, download DXC’s white paper, AI predictions for 2019-2021.
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