AI (Artificial Intelligence) performance is improving rapidly. AI adoption is increasing in business and daily life. Growing awareness of the importance of AI and its social implications is key.

Financial services organizations have been identifying continuous improvement measures to increase level of efficiency and operational excellence. Core systems and platforms have been introduced and implemented, surrounded by numerous legacy systems.

Nevertheless, manual processing of data, reconciling vast amounts of transactions by a human being, and the existence of non-value adding tasks are still proof of an even higher potential to increase performance by changing technology enablers.

In addition, customers’ expectations are changing and growing – particularly in view of the global COVID-19 pandemic – and interpersonal interactions have become less relevant in certain areas. Self-serving applications without dependency on human beings, seamless and timely processing of requests, and rapid answer provision are shaping the new reality.

How should organizations use evolving technologies, such as AI, to meet customer expectations and augment human intelligence?

The following drivers are relevant for the expected evolution of AI applied in the financial services industry, helping to accelerate innovation, improve performance and enable remarkable customer experience.

  1. Significant improvements in AI are made with the new technologies and an increase in data generation.
  2. The AI performance improvements achieved through deep learning have enabled the development of more sophisticated applications for business and daily life use.
  3. The emergence of daily life applications using AI has raised awareness of its importance for the future and of its social implications.

What is important to consider when unlocking the potential of and increasing intelligent automation?

Most financial service organizations have embarked on their tech enabled transformation journey. AI is viewed as part of a toolkit of technologies to foster a higher level of digitization and intelligent automation.

Given the rapid development of AI, urgent questions are raised about ethical and consumer protection issues — from potential bias in algorithmic recruiting decisions to the privacy implications of health monitoring applications.   

Policymakers have been exploring these issues in depth and are well aligned on identifying the most important ethical principles. They have now reached a pivotal point: moving from articulating principles to implementing public policy. 

The COVID-19 global pandemic has highlighted complex ethical trade-offs, reoriented the ethical landscape and inspired unprecedented coordination between policymakers and companies. AI-based solutions are playing a crucial role in the fight against the pandemic — from contact-tracing algorithms to drones that scan body temperatures and ensure compliance with social distancing directives.

Our survey provides relevant insight for leaders in business and government. Closing the gaps in coordinating and understanding the requirements of both policymakers and companies should be a top priority. Doing so would help companies mitigate risks, help policymakers enact  policies that are nuanced and realistic — and, most importantly, address users’ concerns about the ethical implications of AI.

Call for action and reflection

  • Have you assessed all existing regulatory requirements and the risks related to AI adoption?
  • What is your AI/intelligent automation strategy going forward?
  • How will you embed AI into your tech enabled transformation journey?
  • Which technology will be the key for you?

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