Global business value derived from artificial intelligence (AI) is projected to total USD 1.2 trillion in 2018, an increase of 70 percent from 2017. According to Gartner, AI-derived business value is forecast to reach USD 3.9 trillion in 2022.
The Gartner AI-derived business value forecast assesses the total business value of AI across all the enterprise vertical sectors covered by Gartner. There are three different sources of AI business value include customer experience, new revenue and cost reduction.
Gartner explains customer experience as the positive or negative effects on indirect cost. Customer experience is a necessary precondition for widespread adoption of AI technology to both unlock its full potential and enable value.
“In the early years of AI, customer experience (CX) is the primary source of derived business value, as organizations see value in using AI techniques to improve every customer interaction, with the goal of increasing customer growth and retention. CX is followed closely by cost reduction, as organizations look for ways to use AI to increase process efficiency to improve decision making and automate more tasks,” said John-David Lovelock, Research Vice President at Gartner.
He cautions though that in 2021, new revenue will become the dominant source, as companies uncover business value in using AI to increase sales of existing products and services, as well as to discover opportunities for new products and services. Thus, in the long run, the business value of AI will be about new revenue possibilities.
Virtual agents allow corporate organizations to reduce labor costs as they take over simple requests and tasks from a call center, help desk and other service human agents, while handing over the more complex questions to their human counterparts. They can also provide uplift to revenue, as in the case of robo-advisors in financial services or upselling in call centers.
As virtual employee assistants, virtual agents can help with calendaring, scheduling and other administrative tasks, freeing up employees’ time for higher value-add work and/or reducing the need for human assistants. Agents account for 46 percent of the global AI-derived business value in 2018 and 26 percent by 2022, as other AI types mature and contribute to business value.
Decision automation systems use AI to automate tasks or optimize business processes. They are particularly helpful in tasks such as translating voice to text and vice versa, processing handwritten forms or images, and classifying other rich data content not readily accessible to conventional systems. As unstructured data and ambiguity are the staple of the corporate world, decision automation, as it matures, will bring tremendous business value to organizations. For now, decision automation accounts for just 2 percent of the global AI-derived business value in 2018, but it will grow to 16 percent by 2022.
Smart products have AI embedded in them, usually in the form of cloud systems that can integrate data about the user’s preferences from multiple systems and interactions. They learn about their users and their preferences to hyperpersonalize the experience and drive engagement.