Boosting productivity for knowledge workers with augmented intelligence



March 15, 2019

Technology flash blue lights.
Technology flash blue lights.

Artificial intelligence is playing a more significant role in the workplace today. Companies across all different industries are figuring out how AI can best improve business practices, whether through automation, optimization, or consolidation of complex data processes. The goal is to eliminate redundancies and give employees the power to do more.

The future looks bright for knowledge workers. At AI Summit New York, AlphaSense Founder and CEO Jack Kokko outlined some of the biggest challenges knowledge workers face today and AI’s role in improving productivity.

“AI is good at narrowly-defined tasks and can do them well,” Kokko said. “There are many untapped opportunities to leverage AI for knowledge workers.”

Common challenges for knowledge workers

Knowledge workers “think for a living” and are constantly inundated with new information from various fragmented sources, particularly those working in financial services, consulting, or a wide swath of roles in corporations. The sheer volume of information available is difficult to read, assess, and analyze in a meaningful way. As a result, key pieces of market-moving details fall through the cracks or aren’t discovered quickly enough to impact decision-making.

When researching trends across multiple verticals, industries, and regions that often use different language or terminology to describe the same thing, it doesn’t matter how smart, well-trained, or prepared you are. You’re set to fail when the volume of information you’re expected to process surpasses human cognition.

“There are thousands of ways to talk about one single business topic,” Kokko said. “Language variability means you have to think about the many different ways to talk about a concept to capture every relevant instance.”

With traditional research in legacy platforms, this means manually conducting individual queries and hoping you took all relevant keywords you needed into account. However, with the potential for thousands of variables, this puts you at risk of missing out on crucial information that impacts ROI.

AI augmentation conquers information overload

Artificial intelligence can help ease the burden by augmenting traditional search to serve knowledge workers better.

“What AI enables here is the ability to map human language,” Kokko said. “You can correlate different terms in ways related to each other and build language understanding into machine algorithms.”

Augmented search technology can identify, aggregate, and curate all relevant terms tied to a particular search. This means more detailed results without worrying about missing something due to human error.

Seeing the big picture with Augmented Intelligence

Once you start adding layers of intelligence, mapping out human language, and applying it to different entities (like industries and companies, trends, topics), you can start to filter a full scope of information down to key data points to help solve business problems.

“When you start to see something impactful for knowledge professionals,” Kokko said. “You can make decisions with clarity and confidence, which leads to some real business insight if these highly-paid knowledge workers lead the company down the right path.”

“They’re saving time from grunt work machines can now help them do,” Kokko added. “Instead, they’re thinking and generating ideas, catching risks early, reacting to them, and knowing their customers better. What this leads to are better business outcomes.”

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