Check out these basic steps to AI success
You may have read our recent blog What is AI and why is it so important, which gave you an overview and an overall definition of AI. Of course the benefits of AI can be transformative, but the challenges can seem overwhelming when it comes to taking the necessary steps to incorporate AI into your own business. So, here’s a beginner’s guide to how to get started with AI – the process, common pitfalls, and recommended approach.
Understand limitations and capabilities of AI?
To successfully apply AI to your own particular business you first need to gain a deep understanding of the basic technology and how it can be applied. So do your homework and find out what it’s actually capable of delivering for your enterprise, including the benefits and drawbacks. There’s plenty of online help available to get you started, including Kdnuggets, pytorch, tensorflow and kubeflow.
Build your prototype
Once you’ve achieved a thorough familiarity with AI, and what type of skills and learning you’re going to need, start with building a prototype for the smallest business problem you have. Naturally, this project should be small scale.
However, before you begin, make sure you’ve completed the following tasks:
- Define your objective – what success will look like
- Establish your timeline. Your time required shouldn’t be any more than three months.
- Work out your budget – how much money is needed for tools, platform, recruitment etc.
Once you’ve built your prototype, share it with your relevant stakeholders and business areas. This will soon give you realistic insights into the real challenges for your specific areas. It may even be the case that AI is not really suitable for your enterprise at the moment. Or the complete reverse may be true!
It’s important to engage stakeholders at all levels, both horizontally and vertically. This could take some time, depending on the culture of your organisation. A word of warning – make sure right from the start to give participants the right expectations for your particular AI process capabilities.
Establish your AI strategy
Only now, once you’ve understood the context and capability of the domain using the three steps above, is it time to work out your AI strategy. Without this vital initial research and input, your plan is bound to fail. Some key questions for your strategy will include buy vs build, assessment of your business readiness to adapt AI, recruitment vs outsourcing, communication (both internal and external), organisation commitement (stakeholders & financial).
Implement – quickly and boldly
Once you’re ready to apply your AI process, you should do it fast, exploiting your full capabilities. And don’t let fear of possible failure hold you back – that’s how you learn and fine tune your applications. Projects should be able to deliver values in small releases, with the ability to absorb continuous improvements. Your technology landscape should be able to scale to your particular business needs, and connect with your existing IT environment reasonably easily.
Successful scalability depends on three critical pillars:
- People. Your team members’ skills should be easily transferable, so that capabilities can be quickly built
- Process. Including the increasingly important business and technology application of DevOps, to deliver ongoing improvements, from start to finish
- Technology. Your AI needs to be a service that can be easily integrated into your existing operational systems.
Every journey has to begin somewhere, and getting started with AI is no different. And don’t get too hung up on achieving full success first up. As we’ve said, embracing failure is all part of your path to making AI truly work for you.
So, why not take the first steps in your AI adventure today?
Have any tips or tricks on how to get started with AI? If so, share them in the comments below.
Contact Bridge Consulting
As a leading management consulting firm specialising in digital business we can determine whether an AI process will be suitable for your business, what type of structure you’ll need and help you choose the right professionals to implement your transformative AI solution. Get in touch with our AI experts at Bridge today.
Karthik Murugan, Client Partner