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TECHNOLOGY

3 Unexpected Departments That Can Benefit From AI

Re-thinking how you can and should apply AI may be the most important thing you do in 2018.

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BY Jeff Barrett - 16 May 2018

PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images

At the beginning of this month, I was in New York in a surprisingly comfortable glass box, interviewing the brightest minds in AI: people from Adobe, Carnegie Mellon, MIT and more.

It was one of the rare times in my life when I listened more than I spoke. AI is becoming a catch-all term for innovation around data--even in a panel discussion with nine of the smartest minds in AI, there was debate on what it is and how it's used.

If they can't figure it out, I won't try. But it's undeniable how much potential there is to use AI to enhance almost anything we currently do.

So let's start showcasing where and how entrepreneurs can be most effective with AI. It's my resolution to demystify AI for everyone (I gave up on being a bodybuilder two months ago, so here we are).

HR Processes

Twenty years ago, you had to mail in a physical copy of your resume. Automating that process online made it easier for HR to sift through applications and for people to apply.

Without an ability to sift through hundreds or thousands of applicants, companies started using keyword search to flag and eliminate resumes quickly to narrow things down. Plenty of good people get lost in that process.

Lindsey Zuloaga, Director of Data Science, HireVue, told me a fascinating story during an interview about how there are now tools to add hidden keywords to your resume so it will get through. That's now a flawed system.

"Companies that are using AI tools are snagging top talent right away off the market before old-fashioned companies have had a chance to look at resumes," said Zuloaga.

Instead of passively sifting through resumes, companies are proactively going after potential candidates that fit their criteria.

This drastically changes the model. How do you use it as a company? It may mean more efficiency for recruiting staff or not having to use a recruiting firm because you can bring that effort in-house. How do you leverage it as an entrepreneur? Like any other disruption this will change the power structure creating open market share.

Be a talent finder, talent connector just don't be another job board. No one in the history of mankind likes posting their resume to a listing on a job board and then most likely not getting a response.

Creative and Design

"Most of AI right now is Narrow AI, task-based. But we are entering an exciting time for creatives and designers in the sense that if you look at what's happening in the digital market space, need to create experience. Now we can marry the artfulness of creativity with the computational intelligence and logic of science to create better experiences," said Chris Duffey, Sr. Strategic Development Manager, Adobe.

Duffey, who sat in on the nine person panel of experts I mentioned earlier, sees AI as the best way for brands and startups alike to find and engage their customers. And it's not complicated. The more targeted and less intrusive an advertisement can be, the better. You probably don't fill out the survey when offered by a cashier. I know I don't.

But just like we can use AI to make better diagnostics and potentially cure disease in healthcare, we can use it in business at both a small and large scale to be incredibly more efficient in how we reach people. Less guessing means less risk especially for smaller businesses.

Unnderrated is how AI can be applied to creative, design and more artistic fields--not just in a time-saving way but to actually spark and inspire creative ideas based off of data science.

Giving Back

Non-profits struggle with tech investment because they uniquely have to show where and how each donor dollar is spent.

Jake Porway, Founder and Executive Director, DataKind sees a future for non-profits and AI where "we don't just look for good values in data, we use AI for our own human values. Almost every field could be touched by AI in some way."

He would like to see that this not be on corporations alone that they have to give back to do this. And not be on non-profits alone that they have to solve the problem. But that we actually create spaces where we combine a non-profit that knows exactly what needs to be done with a corporation that has the data and resources to get it done. And that's how we can push together to use data for social good.

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