How Artificial Intelligence is already changing the way offices work

Artificial intelligence (AI) uses robots to complete menial tasks, which results in greater efficiency and less risk of employee error. AI in the office will operate like a virtual team member that never goes home or needs a lunch break. Leveraging these technologies increases not only the output but the quality of work and level of service. By collecting data over time, AI technologies can change and develop without human intervention, meaning this is just the beginning of a significantly more productive future.

AI is a series of algorithms operating in the background of applications. Referred to as neural networks, these algorithms can be straightforward or extremely complex. There are many different architectures, however, most AI algorithms contain three key elements: an input for the different sorts of variables; a hidden layer which contains logic and weight in terms of the direction a program may go; and an output. Every AI has to be trained, often but not always by humans, to make any corrections.

AI is starting to emerge in various fields, notably in protecting individuals’ personal information. The recent introduction of mandatory data breach notification legislation in Australia and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe means there is increasing value in being able to automatically classify content, particularly sensitive or personal information. This classification can help determine how certain data is protected or treated, ensuring companies remain compliant with privacy legislation.

Through an action as simple as reviewing an Outlook Exchange folder, AI can also detect employee sentiment including how employees are feeling and how this reflects a company’s culture. Organisations are starting to leverage AI for these purposes, giving way to a new concept referred to as intelligent information management.

Intelligent information management is metadata-driven, repository neutral, and intelligent. By combining this with a content-agnostic approach, the system can bring in content, then classify and analyse it. The approach is also repository-agnostic so businesses can reach into multiple, different repositories without wasting time looking for information. Using just one user interface, team members can get the information they need immediately, no matter where it’s stored or what format it’s in.

There are a number of use cases for AI when it comes to information management including reviewing medical records such as MRIs and x-rays, or automatically analysing document content and summarising it so no key points are missed. AI also lets systems understand, based on the context of an email, what document needs to be attached. It can then automatically attach a link to the newest version of the correct document and automatically generate an explanation of changes in a revised document.

These use cases are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to ways AI can help team members save time and effort in working with documents. Managing information will become an automatic function that team members don’t have to worry about, yet the information they need will be immediately available as soon as they need it. This intelligent information management era is already here to some extent and will continue to evolve in exciting ways.

Nicholas Delaveris, Alliances and Partner Director – Australia and New Zealand, M-Files

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