As a small business owner, you have no doubt seen all the hype and success stories in the media around the advancements and use cases for artificial intelligence in recent years. As more information became available, you may have said to yourself, "That's great, but how do I leverage it for my company?" Of course, not all businesses are the same, but there are likely plenty of practical applications for AI technology that you haven't explored in full yet.
The first thing you have to understand is that you are likely sitting on a treasure trove of business data that no human could fully interpret, because it's impossible to view every data point spread out over years of operations and see the big picture, according to Harvard Business Review. What AI does, in effect, is takes all that data and quickly give you clear, actionable information.
As an example, many small businesses — believe it or not — aren't always quite sure what their cash flow looks like and many struggle to stay on top of accounts payable and receivable, as HBR explained. For that reason, even slight missteps in making payments or following up with suppliers can result in lost efficiency and revenue, harming your company. AI can help you sort through all of that information and put more power in your hands.
More than just an overview
At the same time, it's important to understand that reviewing past performance and even predicting future operations is just one service AI can provide for the busy small business owner or manager, Fast Company explained. It can also be used to do something as seemingly simple — but critically time-saving — as transcribing notes, meetings and presentations. Keep in mind, these transcriptions aren't likely to be 100% accurate, but they make it easy to go back and look at what was said and when.
AI can even help you in writing content that will be critical to your business, respond to inquiry emails or messages submitted through your website and more, the report said. These are all time-consuming but mission-critical tasks, and AI can lighten the load.
Spreading the benefits
Indeed, if AI can provide these benefits for managers, they can also help any or all of your employees complete certain tasks, according to Built In. That, in turn, provides added value by freeing employees up to tackle more mission-critical tasks going forward, making each worker — and by extension, your entire small business — more productive.
You may need to hire someone who can effectively implement various AI programs and ensure they are running smoothly on an ongoing basis, and this is an area where YES Partners can lend a hand. To see some of the roles that we have already successfully placed, click here.
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