Artificial intelligence (AI) has become one of the essential drivers of digital change in business and society. Companies face the challenge of establishing AI as an integral part of their corporate strategy to remain competitive in the future. According to a recent Bitkom study on AI from 2020 with more than 600 interviewed persons, companies consider artificial intelligence to be of outstanding importance but find it difficult to successfully anchor the organization’s technology in a value-adding manner. An important reason for this is the lack of an AI strategy on an organizational level.
Based on our many years of AI project experience, we have identified 6 key elements that companies need to consider when developing an AI strategy:
- Data: The fundamental building block of an AI initiative is the systematic collection, management, and provision of data. Data must be considered a strategic asset and treated accordingly.
- Use Cases: A transparent process for identifying, prioritizing, and implementing AI Use Cases promotes better scalability of the AI initiative throughout the organization.
- Infrastructure: The IT infrastructure of the organization must be flexible enough to map all AI-relevant loads. The sustainability of the own on-premises infrastructure should be examined and weighed against a (partially) cloud-based infrastructure.
- Organization: At the organizational level, frame conditions must be created for an optimal implementation and scaling of AI. That includes agile processes and the anchoring of data-driven decisions in the culture of the company.
- Team & Skills: Experienced talents from different areas/roles are needed to execute AI initiatives. The personnel requirements must be adapted to the respective AI maturity level of the organization.
- Governance: Solid governance mechanisms must be developed and established all of the core elements mentioned above. In the context of AI, this includes in particular data governance but also the explainability and interpretability of AI models.
The most important strategic decisions concerning the successful implementation of AI initiatives can be derived from these six elements. There are various temporal and content-related dependencies between the key elements, which must be considered when developing the strategy. We have developed five guiding questions for the key elements’ internal design to support you in the discussion and decision-making process.
In my whitepaper, “The 6 key elements of an AI strategy”, I use these five guiding questions to explain how you can ideally prepare your company for the implementation of AI.
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