Your business has areas that could improve significantly in cost reductions, efficacy, or new business ventures if you made better use of available information. Perhaps you could improve the way you monitor and predict failure. AI can help reduce cost, reduce waste, or even improve operational efficiency. Or, perhaps you could augment certain executive decisions. AI can help improve the allocation of your staff or increase the loyalty of your customers.
Whatever the potential, the simplest way to begin this discovery is to brainstorm on areas of the business with the largest intelligence gaps. Prioritize areas by their potential to improve the company. Then, begin filling the gaps with hypothetical AI data stories.
An AI data story describes how AI could be applied in the company. Like any good story, it has a setting, a plot, and a resolution. AI—or more accurately, your application of AI—is the hero that resolves some important problem. In the same way that every hero needs a good villain, every good application of AI data needs a specific measurable business metric to improve.
Table 2-1 shows Act I of a three-act story of how AI might be applied to improve innovation in manufacturing. Act I begins by introducing the setting, presenting applied AI as the main character, describing an unresolved state of affairs, and describing the desired final outcome.