There’s Never Been a Better Time to Work in AI

Saragossa

There’s Never Been a Better Time to Work in AI

These days, if you had a pound for every time someone mentioned the phrase ‘Artificial Intelligence’ – you’d probably be investing a pretty decent sum into it.

If you’re an Artificial Intelligence professional, then you’re fortunate enough to have the option of working in some of the most exciting and important industries in the world. Here are just a few of the areas where demand for AI talent is particularly high.

Finance

The ability to analyse vast quantities of data and use that data to inform real-world decisions makes Artificial Intelligence a perfect accessory for financial industries. Recently, the world of finance has been abuzz with talk about robo-advisors. Using mathematical rules and algorithms, these robo-advisors require minimal human intervention and can provide detailed financial advice relating to stocks, bonds, futures, commodities, real estate, and more. By working as a collaborative tool for human financial advisors (and not by replacing them), this technology can massively accelerate the advisory process – and in an area as volatile as investment, any time saved can have substantial implications.

The capabilities of AI for financial fraud detection are also being eagerly explored – artificial intelligence systems are able to recognise suspicious and fraudulent transactions in a matter of minutes, rather than the several hours that it may take a human analyst. Such systems obviously require human assistance to learn what constitutes a fraudulent transaction, as well as to provide them with new data to process as the practices used by fraudsters continuously develop.

Healthcare

The application of AI to healthcare services may not be a particularly new development, but it’s arguably one of the most intriguing. Complete robo-dominance is still quite a long way off – and I think most of us would probably be quite reluctant to be operated on by someone called ‘Dr. 944872-77C’. But the use of artificial intelligence programs for things like radiology, where machines can interpret images and note minuscule changes that a human eye may miss, is something that definitely warrants further investment.

Another hot topic within this space is that of ‘personalised medicine’ – in short, the idea that the doctors of the future will be able to use AI to take into account factors like personal/family history, genetics and other factors, in order to make more accurate diagnoses and prescribe more bespoke treatments. While this idea is still in its infancy, it is the belief of many that it will slowly mature as deep learning technology evolves.

Education

It is doubtful that we will ever fully replace human teachers with machines – it’s difficult to imagine a machine ever having the emotional depth, flexibility and empathy that is found in the best educators. However, AI has already been used to streamline a great deal of essential administration processes, such as the marking of multiple-choice style assessments, allowing teachers to focus more of their time and energy on being available to address their individual students’ personal needs.

Other more direct posited applications include enabling machines to analyse a student’s progress – where they are excelling and where they are struggling – and tailor their specific curriculum to reflect this progress. The concept of a machine that can dedicate more time to testing a student on the material they are having trouble grasping and less time on things they have already mastered is purely theoretical at this point, however the benefits, one can assume, would be substantial.

Retail

Perhaps the industry where AI is already having the greatest impact is retail. I recently commented (somewhat sceptically) on the rising popularity of ‘chatbots’, which are already seeing a great deal of use in multiple sectors, one of which is consumer shopping. An estimate by Gartner predicts that 85% of customer service interactions by 2020 will be powered by chatbot technology. While I may have my reservations about the current efficacy of chatbots, the fact is that they are becoming more popular every day, and as the technology behind them improves, so too will their ability to replace human-to-human customer service.

Another particularly intriguing use of AI in retail is that of price optimisation. While utilising data to adjust product prices is hardly a novel idea, AI can massively augment this process by providing retailers with the power to adjust prices based on a host of extraneous factors such as weather, upcoming events and, of course, competitor prices. For example, a company selling barbecue supplies might raise or lower their prices depending on the next month’s weather forecast. Until recently, this technology was only available to retail giants like Amazon, but it is inevitable that we’ll see more and more smaller business put it to use over the next few years.

To sum up, there’s never been a better time to work in Artificial Intelligence. AI may be approaching a stage where it can take certain responsibilities away from human employees, but it still requires a good deal of human intervention in order to realise its full potential. Knowledge of AI programming will, it seems, continue to become a more and more valuable skill as the technology moves forwards.

Saragossa are a talent provider specialising in the Financial Technology, Financial Operations and Data Science sectors. Our role is to match clients with high calibre candidates. Our work encompasses filling temporary contracts along with building permanent teams and resourcing projects. To find out more, please contact jason@saragossa.co.uk or call 020 7993 1385.

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