Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the latest technology to propel the Fourth Industrial Revolution forward, and business leaders must understand how AI could impact them. Are you ready to have AI applications as part of your business strategy? You may need these to keep up with productivity improvements and to remain competitive.
This blog focuses on practical applications for Artificial Intelligence based on Large Language Models. (Other classes of AI are suitable for different applications, such as manufacturing automation.)
ChatGPT and GPT-4 are AI tools developed by OpenAI to understand natural language and generate relevant human-like conversational responses: a capability that can revolutionise how UK small and medium-sized businesses interact with customers. ChatGPT is a web-based chatbot application utilising the GPT large language model, trained with a vast amount of information, content and safeguards using supervised and reinforcement learning techniques. AI-powered language models can help businesses automate customer service, generate personalised content, and even assist decision-making.
The UK Government sponsored research by Capital Economics into Artificial Intelligence technology adoption up to the end of 2020. The results showed 15% of small companies (average spend of £9,500), 34% of medium-sized companies (average spend of £380,000), and 8% of large companies (average spend of £1.6m) had adopted at least one AI technology. Moreover, 3% of small and 8% of medium-sized companies had adopted four or more AI technologies. By 2025, adoption will grow 50% from the 432,000 companies using AI in 2020. However, UK Business Advisors believe adoption will be greater due to technologies like Chat GPT, Google Bard, Microsoft 365 Copilot and OpenAI Dall-E2. None of these were available in 2020.
The top six practical artificial intelligence applications for UK SMEs are:
1. General content and text creation
ChatGPT has become infamous for “understanding” human text queries to generate outputs like writing articles, composing emails, generating reports, and proposing software code. The underlying GPT language model has not been kept up-to-date with new information. But GPT-4 can work with other applications that train the model with current or specialised data. If used carefully, decent content can be quickly created and structured. But it is unwise to use unfiltered outputs from ChatGPT without oversight from human editors (see below).
2. AI-powered chatbots for customer service
Chatbots powered by ChatGPT and GPT-4 can handle routine customer enquiries and provide personalised, nuanced, conversational responses. These chatbots can assist customers with everything from basic troubleshooting to complex problem solving without human intervention, helping small businesses save time, money and improving the overall customer experience.
3. Personalised content creation
GPT-4 can generate content personalised to the needs and preferences of individual customers or types of customers. For example, an SME business can use GPT-4 to create customised marketing messages tailored to client interests and behaviours. This ability may help increase engagement and conversions by delivering more relevant content to the target audience.
4. Product recommendation engines
SME businesses can use ChatGPT and the GPT-4 model to build recommendation engines that suggest products or services to customers based on their previous interactions and preferences. This ability may help small and medium-sized businesses increase sales by providing customers with personalised recommendations that are more likely to lead to a purchase.
5. Decision-making assistance
GPT-4 can assist decision-making by providing insights and recommendations based on data analysis. For example, a business can use it to analyse customer feedback and suggest changes to improve the customer experience, helping you make better-informed decisions and improve overall business performance.
6. Automating administrative tasks
SME businesses can use ChatGPT and GPT-4 to automate administrative tasks such as scheduling, data entry, research, monthly reporting, and document management. This ability can help save time and reduce errors by eliminating the need for manual data entry and paperwork. You can integrate company-specific data into the model.
There are some problems to consider when using Large Language Models like ChatGPT and GPT-4. A concern is AI hallucination, which occurs when the Artificial Intelligence model generates outputs not based on reality. Other issues include bias in the models and insufficient consideration of ethics have also been an issue. These limitations can lead to misleading information and inappropriate responses that can damage a business. Therefore, you must ensure that the AI models are trained on high-quality data and monitored regularly to ensure that the outputs are accurate and relevant.
AI technology is advancing rapidly, and partner companies are building GPT-4 and other Artificial Intelligence tools into their offerings to enable powerful new applications. With a strategic approach to adopting AI applications, small and medium-sized businesses can punch above their weight, stay ahead of the competition, improve productivity, provide exceptional customer experiences, and thrive.