02/05/2024 |

What are the advantages of artificial intelligence?

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a defining topic in the corporate world. Plenty of organizations are implementing AI systems to automate tasks or make better decisions, for example. This article looks at the specific advantages and disadvantages of artificial intelligence - and how companies can make the best possible use of this technology.

The most important features of AI

Before we move on to the specific advantages, here is a brief description of the characteristics of artificial intelligence and what it can achieve based on them. This makes it clear exactly how and where its advantages come about.

  • Ability to learn: AI systems use machine learning (ML) to develop further on the basis of experience and data. Algorithms and statistical models are used to learn from data (deep learning) and recognize patterns and relationships. This is possible with the help of so-called neural networks, which create connections from information in a similar way to the human brain.
  • Natural language processing (NLP): Plenty of AIs can understand human language and generate corresponding content. Applications such as chatbots, speech recognition and translation tools make use of this.
  • Autonomy: Artificial intelligence can – based on learned information – autonomously perform tasks, make decisions and initiate actions.
  • Interactions with humans: AIs interact with humans in a natural way; both through speech and non-verbally.
  • Solving problems: By recognizing patterns and making logical deductions, AI tools can solve complex problems.
  • Adaptivity: Artificial intelligences are able to adapt to changing conditions, requirements and environments.
  • Perception: Some AI systems have sensors and data processing techniques to perceive and understand their environment.
  • Safety and ethics: AI should be as safe as possible to use and reduce potential risks. It is also becoming more and more important that the corresponding applications adhere to ethical principles.

The 10 biggest benefits of using AI

We have already seen that AI is capable of doing lots of useful and helpful things.

Here are the ten biggest benefits that companies can expect from using artificial intelligence.

Benefit #1: Increased efficiency

AI-supported solutions can take plenty of work off companies’ hands and shorten the path to relevant results, especially when it comes to repetitive tasks. For example, automated workflows or optimized processes lead to significantly greater efficiency. In this way, resources can be used more effectively – there is less work and the results tend to be better.

Benefit #2: time savings

Where AI can relieve companies of work, it also saves them lots of time. If routine tasks in particular are completed quickly, plenty of valuable working time is saved.

This has several positive effects at once:

  • Employees are less distracted by simple, monotonous work and there is much-needed freedom for value-adding and creative work.
  • In addition to time, money and resources can also be saved (indirectly).
  • Companies can concentrate more directly on their goals.
  • Employees tend to be more satisfied.

Benefit #3: Optimized decision-making

An AI analyzes large amounts of data (big data) and recognizes patterns that serve companies as an important basis for strategies and tactics. This enables well-founded and precise decisions to be made.

Our intelligence is what makes us human, and AI is an extension of this quality.
Yann LeCun, French-American machine learning specialist, Chief AI Scientist at Facebook

Benefit #4: Greater security

Artificial intelligence is increasingly being used to detect and ward off potential threats. For example, it increases security by monitoring networks, detecting fraud and recognizing anomalies in user behaviour. This form of corporate security is particularly useful for protecting critical infrastructures or keeping relevant information under better control, for example.

Benefit #5: Plenty of customer satisfaction

By analysing user data, artificial intelligence can create personalized experiences. This benefits e-commerce and customer service, for example. AI – in the form of chatbots, for example – can also support customers and employees with self-service and the use of knowledge bases.

Benefit #6: More accuracy and fewer errors

AI has the ability to perform repetitive tasks extremely accurately. It is less prone to errors than humans. This is particularly beneficial in areas such as the creation of analyses and predictions, quality control or medical diagnoses.

Benefit #7: Dealing with big data

Artificial intelligence is capable of processing enormous amounts of data. With their help, companies can efficiently analyze big data to find correlations or detect anomalies. Systems can also be continuously monitored in this way.

Benefit #8: Promotion of innovation

AI is able to solve existing problems in innovative ways. Sometimes it can even open up opportunities for new products or services. This gives companies the chance to become more competitive and exploit new business potential.

Benefit #9: Making predictions

Through predictive analytics, the use of AI can lead to valid predictions so that companies are aware of relevant developments and can take appropriate precautions at an early stage.

Benefit #10: Scalability

AI systems can be easily scaled to cope with growing data volumes or increasing requirements. This allows companies to grow flexibly and react to changes.

Possible disadvantages of AI applications

Even if AI technologies promise numerous advantages, we must be aware that their application can also have some disadvantages.

Here are some of them:

Disadvantage #1: Dependence on technology

Over-reliance on AI can lead to people losing their ability to adequately understand complex problems and situations. Although this disadvantage only occurs when AI is used quite frequently, it is certainly realistic.

In short, people should not rely exclusively on AI, but should also make sufficient use of their own intellect. Even with plenty of new technological possibilities, you still need employees who have a comprehensive overview of processes and workflows.

Disadvantage #2: Structural change in the labor market

At its worst, this is a nice way of describing the loss of numerous jobs. Not only employees, but also companies themselves experience such profound disruptions.

But it doesn’t have to come to that: Rather, the demands placed on employees often simply change. This makes new skills and the reorganization of job requirements necessary.

Disadvantage #3: Bias and discrimination

Artificial intelligences are dependent on their training and learning data. If these are distorted at certain points or reflect discrimination, this is directly transferred to the content output by the AI. An AI is only as good as the database on which it is based.

The data must be subject to strict control so that an AI can act fairly, free of prejudice and ethically. This is especially true when it comes to rather sensitive topics such as error analysis, risk-benefit considerations, hiring decisions or even judicial issues.

Disadvantage #4: Data protection and privacy

Sharing data with an AI initially helps it to learn and improve. It only gets tricky if the data is too personal, is only intended for internal use or contains other sensitive information. Users should therefore consider what information they enter into an AI – and what not.  After all, they are also sharing the data with the company that has control over the database and, if necessary, with other users.

Disadvantage #5: How reliable is the data structure?

People are quick to rely on artificial intelligence. But just as people rely on their different experiences, an AI first needs the right data structure.

There are some potential difficulties here:

  • The data in question is not available in the first place.
  • The data is not in the right format.
  • The data has been (deliberately) falsified.

In fact, AI systems can also be susceptible to attacks and manipulation of the data – weak points should therefore be avoided in the algorithms as far as possible.

The data must also be as valid, reliable and appropriate as possible.

Pros vs. cons of artificial intelligence

It is clear that AI has numerous advantages and stands for progress. It simplifies people’s lives, makes companies more efficient and gives customers a better experience. Widespread use of AI is a technological leap from which the global economy – as well as individual companies and people – can benefit significantly.

However, it is also in the nature of things that disadvantages arise. These do not necessarily mean that the use of AI will be discontinued, but they do signal that caution is required in some areas. For example, people should not rely solely or unchecked on artificial intelligence, but should still use their own common sense. In this way, certain security risks can also be mitigated.

AI has already gained a firm place in everyday (working) life, where it provides employees with valuable assistance or revolutionizes customer service, for example. What counts here is thoughtful and responsible use.

Artificial intelligence can't do the thinking for us.
Thomas Ramge, author and tech journalist

Background to the use of AI

In order to have plenty of clarity about how and where exactly the benefits of artificial intelligence can be felt, here is some background information.

Relevant areas

Artificial intelligence has already established itself in numerous areas, for example to automate processes, recognize patterns, make predictions or solve problems.

AI is relevant for these areas, for example:

  • Service (e.g. ITSM)
  • e-commerce
  • education
  • Language and text processing
  • Automated manufacturing
  • Healthcare
  • Finance
  • Logistics and transportation
  • Security (e.g. IT security)
  • Art and creativity

Overall, however, the use of AI is possible in countless areas and is by no means limited. Wherever it can provide a relevant benefit, it makes sense.

It is often simple, structured and rule-based processes that can be automated using AI. However, the benefits go beyond this when we think of business analysis, big data or autonomous driving, for example.

Types of AI technology

There are different types of artificial intelligence. When we generally talk about AI – for example in chatbots or text-based summaries – we are talking about generative AI. This creates new content and information by drawing on existing data.

In general, artificial intelligence makes a lot of things possible, but it also has its limits. Lots of people are talking more and more about a blurring line to science fiction, some things are (still) fiction, while others are already part of reality.

Here is a quick overview of the most important types of AI:

Narrow AI

This type of AI can solve certain tasks or problems, although its field of application is relatively narrow. Examples include facial recognition systems, machine translations or simple chatbots.

Strong AI (General AI)

This is considered the “real” AI, but remains fiction for the time being and a goal for the future. A strong AI would have the ability to perform any cognitive task that a human can handle.

Reactive AI

This form of artificial intelligence reacts to certain inputs based on predefined responses. In some cases, reactive AI has a (limited) memory and can therefore use experience. Examples include chess computers (without memory) or self-driving cars (with memory).

Artificial superintelligence (ASI)

This is a hypothetical form of AI that is superior to human intelligence in all areas. ASI is considered potentially dangerous as it could have unlimited cognitive abilities.

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