A recent accounting industry article suggested that “AI could be the biggest invention since the calculator”. With it already having a massive impact on the accounting world, the big practices are reportedly investing heavily in AI.
Within the narrow confines of the accounting world, which is traditionally a process and systems based industry where micro decisions are made every day, AI allows scalable decisions to be made for repetitive high volume tasks, allowing accountants to focus on providing advisory services which add value. This should enable costs to be cut, quality to be improved and the increasing use of technology should allow accountants to focus on using our skills to drive business benefits for clients.
However, enough about accountants! Outside of the narrow confines of our industry, what is all the fuss about AI and how far will it extend? From Siri to self-driving cars, AI is progressing rapidly and here we’ll take a look at how it could help you.
Alexa – how can AI help my business?
Unless you work in big tech, the implementation of artificial intelligence may seem like a daunting task. We hear a lot about large corporations tapping into AI and other advanced technologies, where it can offer the possibility of delivering accuracy with a greater degree of precision. Think space exploration, mining and so on and the hostile environments they pose, where intelligent robots are used because they are more resilient than humans. Or with banks and other financial institutions, which are using AI to organise and manage data as well as to detect fraud.
But how is it useful for us as smaller business owners? Well, there are many AI tools that may be able to help you right now. Here are five important areas to consider:
Science fact or science fiction – now is the time to tap into AI
Based on the premise that AI could become more intelligent than any human, big names like Stephen Hawking, Elon Musk and Bill Gates all expressed their concern about the risks posed by AI in the future. Whether you believe we are at risk of being overtaken by the machines, from modern day Terminators to people being engulfed in a Westworld style dystopian Disneyland, what AI offers now is a way of streamlining business operations and providing intelligence like never before.
One thing is for certain, AI is not going away and if we fail to take advantage, the competition surely will continue to adopt computer based technologies to enhance their businesses. This is something to ponder, as we drive home in our Tesla cars, ask Alexa what’s trending on Netflix and snuggle down cosily to watch TV at exactly the right temperature thanks to our Nest heating thermostat!