Successful AI implementation in 3 steps — according to Cognizant

While 84% of businesses believe investing in AI will lead to greater competitive advantages, they often struggle with implementing the technology.

The long-term potential of artificial intelligence — despite the hype — are not set in stone. The benefits and the actions to take remain uncertain, and employees are still nervous about AI and how it may affect their jobs.

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For artificial intelligence to drive ROI and succeed, Cognizant has identified three steps businesses must take for successful AI implementation:

1. View AI through a human-centric lens

All business decisions are ultimately based on human behaviour. So, starting from the user point of view, understanding what people want and the methods they may use, will help businesses achieve their desired outcomes. AI should augment rather than replace human insights and experiences.

2. Focus on bringing business value at scale and speed

It is easy to test AI in small batches. But, quickly scaling and deploying the technology will require a strategic approach that focuses on how the technology brings benefits throughout the organisation, rather than in isolation. It also requires sensitivity to the changes that AI introduces to everyone – consumers, employees and management. AI at scale and speed means code is built from insight into what is really needed at a human level.

3. Make sure AI is deployed with strict governance and ethical oversight

Make sure AI is deployed with strict governance and ethical oversight regarding its intent and actions, while ensuring AI’s continuing operations are transparent and deserving of stakeholders’ continued trust. It is important to advocate transparency to inspire trust from consumers.

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A human-centric approach to AI

AI will only succeed if businesses take a human-centric approach.

Sociologists or perhaps, philosophers, will be vital in any organisation wanting to implement AI; especially from a cultural perspective. They will be able to provide the required insights into behaviours between the organisation and its stakeholders.

To explain the potential of AI, the benefits and challenges, every system must be understood and designed in terms of human needs; whether it is a consumer-facing app, an employee-facing administrative website, or compliance and regulation monitoring.

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“Even pure machine-to-machine interactions require an understanding of the human benefits in order to prioritise features such as cost, reliability and speed,” said Sanjiv Gossain, European Head of Cognizant Digital Business.

“The smartest strategy is to look beyond traditional technology processes, and instead view AI as a new way of thinking and acting; that can fundamentally reshape business ability to personalise customer offerings, services and experiences.”

The three AI pillars

Without transparency, trust and personalisation – three essential pillars – AI will fail.

Successful AI implementation will only be achieved if organisations looks deeply into the stakeholders across the value chain.

These businesses will need to embrace a ‘human-centric, ethically-informed approach that minimises unintended bias and seeks to augment the creative, emotional and constructive capabilities of human beings coupled with the speed, accuracy and scale of machine intelligence,’ according to Cognizant. ‘It is human and machine at their best.’

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Nick Ismail

Nick Ismail is a former editor for Information Age (from 2018 to 2022) before moving on to become Global Head of Brand Journalism at HCLTech. He has a particular interest in smart technologies, AI and...