AI Driving a New Age of Innovation in Business

Business Insights

Artificial intelligence (AI) might sound like it comes straight out of a science fiction movie but in reality, it’s already beginning to change the global business environment. And while AI is often discussed in the context of cloud computing or social media, it’s increasingly having a huge impact in other industries outside of tech, such as law and healthcare.

Few can deny that AI is driving a new age of innovation in business. This way keeping on top of the new latest products is essential for savvy business leaders eager to improve the way they operate as well as the manner in which they engage with clients and customers. Having worked in the AI sector for over three decades, I have seen firsthand how AI is changing how businesses operate. So, what types of toolsets should be on their radar?


Where AI tools are concerned, chatbots might be the best-understood example of how AI can save you time and money. A well optimised chatbot can aid a company’s sales function by boosting conversion rates as well as improving customer service. However, while traditional chatbots are only capable of handling a small number of simple requests, AI-enabled chatbots have an embedded analytics layer. What this means is that they can reactively learn from customer data and previous requests to accurately predict issues and feedback useful data that companies can use to improve customer retention.

As chatbots become more sophisticated, expect them to be integrated across lots of different departments within a company. For instance, AI-enabled chatbots could potentially reduce regulatory headaches by reducing the need for human involvement in compliance processes. The most sophisticated tools can completely automate all regulatory monitoring including risk management, anti-fraud and GDPR compliance.

Perhaps even more surprising is the revolutionary impact that chatbots are having in HR. One innovative startup, Spot, has designed a tool which uses ‘cognitive interviews’ to help combat sexual harassment by tracking pertinent information from individuals who believe they have been harassed. While scepticism persists, it might be that AI is actually uniquely well-positioned to solve this problem because employees may feel more comfortable chatting with a bot than they would with an HR professional.

Robotic Process Automation (RPA)

Robotic process automation refers to the new generation of software tools or ‘digital workers’ which are designed to automate repetitive or rules-based business activities which hitherto could only be conducted by a human. Unsurprisingly, forward-thinking industry leaders are very enthused by RPA’s potential to generate savings and boost productivity because it means that highly complex procedures can be carried out quickly, accurately and with total compliance.

For instance, given a dataset, AI could verify the information contained within and subsequently generate a report explaining its key features in a matter of minutes. Moreover, by extracting data from a wider variety of sources than a human could possibly analyse, AI could actually help to reduce the amount of underlying bias in the data companies use to inform their hiring or marketing teams.

AI could even unlock the potential of data analytics. While smaller companies may accept the value of data science, it’s difficult for them to truly benefit from it either because its seen as too expensive or too complicated to be easily integrated into a company’s existing processes. However, upcoming advances in RPA could make cheap, automatic and effective data science a reality for SMEs as well as large corporates. Forbes has even gone as far as to call RPA a ‘gateway drug to digital transformation’ on account of its potential to add immediate value and change the way industry leaders view new opportunities to automate existing processes

Think like an innovator

Chatbots and RPA are just two of the many ways AI is set to disrupt the business word over the next few years. And while AI’s impact is set to be far-reaching, it’s important that entrepreneurs and industry leaders don’t neglect the very human skills and instincts that are required to succeed in business. While new technologies are always providing new ways to save time and money, AI should never be seen as a wholesale replacement for the real thing.

As an innovator in the AI space, I firmly believe that AI disruption will lead to greater efficiency for business leaders and greater quality and range of services for consumers. However, if AI is to truly realise its potential then business leaders must adopt a more innovative mindset themselves. In order to embrace the future, they have to stop seeing new technology exclusively as a way to automate existing processes and start imagining new ways of operating in what is essentially a new world.

Ultimately, AI has so much to offer to businesses across all industries but first, industry leaders and entrepreneurs have to stop fearing change and start embracing it.

Nikolas Kairinos is the CEO and Founder of Fountech – a company specialising in the development and delivery of intelligent AI solutions for businesses and organisations.