14 Strategies to Prepare Your Company for the Automation Revolution

Members of the Young Entrepreneur Council share how to prepare your company for greater integration of artificial intelligence and automation.
Young Entrepreneur Council
Expert Contributor
January 25, 2021
Updated: March 29, 2021
Young Entrepreneur Council
Expert Contributor
January 25, 2021
Updated: March 29, 2021
Headshots of contributing YEC members
Top row, from left: Adam Crawshaw, Ephraim Arnstein, Laura Egocheaga, Ashwin Sreenivas, Kelly Richardson. Middle row, from left: Jared Atchison, Shaun Conrad, Tyler Bray, Daisy Jing, John Brackett. Bottom row, from left: Stephanie Wells, Chris Christoff, Syed Balkhi, Josh Kohlbach.

As modern technology continues to advance, artificial intelligence (AI) and automation are playing an increasingly vital role in the workforce. Routine, recurring tasks are being automated in nearly every industry to save time and money.

As we rapidly approach this so-called AI/automation revolution, businesses may be wondering how they can leverage this technology to their advantage. To help, the members of the Young Entrepreneur Council share 14 ways companies can prepare for this upcoming revolution to maximize their future success.

Prepare for the AI Revolution

  1. Clean Up Your Data Infrastructure
  2. Assess Your Business Processes
  3. Implement a Chatbot and FAQ Database
  4. Identify Workflows That AI Can Augment
  5. Educate Your Team on AI
  6. Understand AI Security Risks
  7. Create a Culture of Automation
  8. Help Team Members Grow Into New Positions
  9. Audit Your Existing Data
  10. Selectively Choose Where to Incorporate AI
  11. Empower Your Team to Use AI Effectively
  12. Focus on the Human Aspects of the Business
  13. Find Solutions That Make Sense for Your Business
  14. Understand How AI Can Actually Benefit You

1. Clean Up Your Data Infrastructure

Clean up your data infrastructure and work toward automation that is digestible instead of a black box. Most importantly, dont use AI in your marketing if you dont have the capability. It will quickly catch up with you. Adam Crawshaw, Assembly

2. Assess Your Business Processes

Assess your current business processes to zero in on what can be improved and what can be enhanced by technology. Then, solicit ideas from your team about where they see your company in the automation revolution. Encourage them to seek out similar businesses and industries that may already be using AI and then envision taking it up a notch. Ephraim Arnstein, Bitbean

3. Implement a Chatbot and FAQ Database

Were currently seeing brick-and-mortar companies going bankrupt by not transitioning into e-commerce. Their clients will be flocking to e-commerce competitors and will be overloading their customer service. Take advantage of bots and use FAQs with predictable word tracks that can be systematized based on specific keywords. This is the quickest and simplest way to take advantage of AI/automation. Laura Egocheaga, Viral Growth Media

4. Identify Workflows That Can Be Augmented With AI

Companies should try to identify time-consuming, manual employee workflows that can be augmented with AI. Very few roles are at risk of being entirely replaced. Rather, AI should be used to automate parts of an employees workflow, thereby freeing them to work on things that create more value for the company. Ashwin Sreenivas, Helia

5. Educate Your Team on AI

If you operate in a highly predictable and mundane environment, then you probably know that AI is going to be part of your business. Its your responsibility to make your team aware of this and educate them on how to leverage the technology to improve their performance. Dedicate some time to train your employees and show them how they can use AI in their day-to-day activities to yield better results. Kelly Richardson, Infobrandz

6. Understand AI Security Risks

To prepare for the AI revolution, its important to understand security and the precautions you need to take. Artificial intelligence is regularly the victim of hackers and malware that threaten your information. Make sure you know how to properly protect your data as well as that of your customers so it doesnt get into the wrong hands. Jared Atchison, WPForms

7. Create a Culture of Automation

Companies are often slow to adopt AI because their workforce is reluctant to change or is distrusting of automation. This delay results in lagging performance. Focus on creating a culture of automation where members are encouraged to find ways to automate tasks and free up time. Communicate the positive aspects of AI to your employees so that theyll start to embrace it rather than being scared of it. Shaun Conrad, Guitar Repair Bench

8. Help Team Members Grow Into New Positions

I empathize with fears of job replacement by AI. If I felt technology was about to replace a member of my team, I would prepare by mining that team members potential to grow into a new position. AI is really good, but there’s more than enough common sense and human touch work to go around. This value will maintain the solid relationships that are the bedrock of a successful business. Tyler Bray, TK Trailer Parts

9. Audit Your Existing Data

AI relies on good data. Therefore, to make it useful, a business must have good data. Fortunately, you dont need expensive tools for this since there are excellent data science techniques that you can use. Once in a while, clear out any duplicates or other forms of bad data. Once your data is complete and clean, you’ll be ready to take full advantage of the AI revolution. Daisy Jing, Banish

10. Selectively Choose Where to Incorporate AI

I think you can get more value from AI and automation if you selectively choose where to incorporate it in your business. Instead of making sweeping changes that disrupt your entire system, spend time focusing on adding AI and automation one step at a time. Youll find that this strategy is much more sustainable in terms of growth, data and your understanding of this amazing technology. John Brackett, Smash Balloon LLC

11. Empower Your Team to Use AI Effectively

Although AI is already booming as we speak, companies can further prepare for it by taking the time to educate their teams. If your employees dont know how to use AI, then it wont do your business any good. Giving them the proper resources and information ensures that your companys strategies are effective and will bring results. Stephanie Wells, Formidable Forms

12. Focus on the Human Aspect of Business

Companies can prepare for the AI/automation revolution by focusing on the human aspect of business. Despite what people say, live employees are still necessary for your company to thrive. Think carefully about the aspects of your business that require a human touch and start pivoting your team there as you implement more AI/automation throughout the year. Chris Christoff, MonsterInsights

13. Find Solutions That Make Sense for Your Business

When thinking about incorporating AI into your business, its important to find solutions and information that makes sense in your particular industry. Its a good idea to follow news, blogs and thought leaders to get industry-specific AI content. You can also look for events like webinars to participate in and find out how you can apply AI effectively in your business. Syed Balkhi, WPBeginner

14. Understand How AI Can Actually Benefit You

Before adopting AI, you need to understand how it works and identify how it can benefit your business. Also, you should understand that the return on AI is slow, so prepare yourself for it accordingly. This will help you cope with the changes without any disappointments, even if things dont work out as planned. Josh Kohlbach, Wholesale Suite

A Smarter Tomorrow When Will AI Revolutionize Your Industry?

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