Building a business case for any AI solution requires an understanding of all its benefits - direct and indirect. Re:infer offers a simple procedure and numerous tools to identify a valuable use case, and calculate its ROI.
Making a business case for AI can be challenging. The market is saturated with solutions that promise the world, but often come up short. Once you’ve identified a solution you have confidence in, you then have the task of convincing the rest of the business.
While fighting internal skepticism of the technology, you must also draw up a detailed business case. Year-by-year, the expected cost versus the anticipated reward needs to be calculated and justified.
At Re:infer, we want to make this process as quick and painless as possible.
For our Conversational Data Intelligence platform, we provide a simple strategy to rapidly progress an initial use case to a detailed business case:
1. Understand the value
Conversational Data Intelligence provides two main benefit streams - one direct and one indirect:
- Process automation: This focuses on reducing or removing the effort and time which employees spend on transactional, communications-based work like responding to emails or triaging service requests. The benefits are direct and can be measured in cost savings.
- Process insight: These are the new-found insights users gain once they have the ability to analyse and understand all of their business communications channels. The value here is indirect as it depends on what users can discover from their communications. It could be anything from revealing a bottleneck in a process, to discovering a product improvement or innovation buried within masses of customer feedback.
Most of our customers build deployments that tap into both benefit streams. But you may find value using only one.
2. Find your use case
Before you build your business case, you need to know where and how the technology will be used. Choosing the right use case is essential, not just for getting the project off the ground but for achieving success and ensuring it meets the expectations of the business.
Knowing the benefits, your next step is to find a part of the business where automating and/or extracting value from communications could provide value. The best strategy is to consider the part of the business where communications - usually in the form of emails, but also chats, shared notes and messages - are most prevalent. This is a good indication that your people are spending too much time and resource on email and other comms-related tasks.
At the end of this process, you don’t need a detailed understanding of the problem. All you need to know is where the problem or opportunity can be found.
3. Calculate the benefits
Your next action should be to calculate whether your intended use case is worth pursuing. How much could you save, and what valuable insights might you gain?
For direct benefits like process automation, this is relatively easy to work out. What you’re measuring here is the effort expended by employees to complete the process you’re automating with Conversational Data Intelligence. It’s the time, or full-time equivalent (FTE), that a process consumes. For example, when you know how much time (and therefore salary) employees spend triaging emails, it becomes very easy to calculate how much the process is costing your business.
But what if you don’t know how much time your people spend on these types of processes? You could use industry-standard estimations. For example, manual email triage is usually 5% of FTE, and 50% of the requests that pass through a helpdesk are minor in complexity and easily automatable.
Yet by far the best option is to use our targeted ROI calculator. By entering in some basic information about your staff and business function, the calculator gives you an estimation of the costs you could be saving with Conversational Data Intelligence. The projection is based on the value generated by previous deployments of Re:infer.
By contrast, it’s more difficult to build a business case around process insight. Comms-based processes are very opaque, and it’s hard to calculate the indirect benefit of a discovery you haven’t made yet.
Yet indirect benefits shouldn’t be ignored. It’s often the unforeseen discoveries that generate the greatest ROI. Direct benefits and cost reductions provide the reliable base value of a solution. Indirect benefits are the exceptional findings that transform a business and how it’s run for the better.
Our next step will help you work out the indirect benefits of your Conversational Data Intelligence use case.
4. Rapid opportunity assessment
Re:infer offers a free, rapid opportunity assessment that’s available on request. Our Customer Success team will examine your use case and feed back with a detailed report on the value you can expect from your deployment. This includes projections for both direct and indirect benefits, leveraging our team’s experience of previous deployments. The process should only take a matter of days, and it produces a fully-costed business case you can then take to your stakeholders.
Our simple four-step guide to Conversational Data Intelligence will help you rapidly develop a detailed business case:
- Understand the technology and its primary benefit streams - process automation and process insight.
- Identify a strong use case by considering where comms-based processes are prevalent in the business, as well as our most common use cases.
- Calculate the direct benefits of your intended use case using our ROI calculator.
- Initiate a rapid opportunity assessment with our Customer Success team to explore the indirect benefits, validate and finalise your business case.