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Data-Driven, Human-Guided: 4 Ways to Balance Decision-Making

by Techies Guardian
Data-Driven, Human-Guided_ 4 Ways to Balance Decision-Making

Data-Driven, Human-Guided – Humans and machines have coexisted for centuries. These devices, created by and for the people who use them, make it easier to get things done. From the simple wheel to the Industrial Revolution, humans have invented machines to become more efficient. AI is no different. It’s the latest contraption in a long list of inventions to improve the world everyone lives in.

But with AI’s presence quickly advancing, people aren’t quite sure what to make of it. Some are holding off, wary of the long-lasting implications of a robot that has the potential to become conscious. Others are diving in head-first, handing their problems over to AI, hoping it spits out viable solutions. The answer may lie in the middle, as AI is missing the key to well-balanced solutions — human guidance. Below are ways to balance AI’s data and the human perspective.

1. Improve Team Performance

Humans are pretty good at sensing when something’s not going their way. For organizations, those “somethings” can be declining sales, increased turnover, and lowered productivity. The money’s not rolling in, and people aren’t showing up like they should. So, it doesn’t take rocket science to predict the company’s trajectory.

Still, where humans often fall short is figuring out the why behind the what. They may not add two and two together, letting personal biases and agendas guide their conclusions. Arguably, AI can have biases too. However, it’s much better at taking loads of data and identifying relationships. And this includes relationships between undesired performance results, employee behaviors, and existing processes. 

When it comes to performance analytics, algorithms can describe, diagnose, predict, and prescribe. AI will tell you what the problem is while foreshadowing what will happen if nothing changes. Algorithms can also point you toward potential solutions. But it’s up to you to look at the story AI is telling and decide what actions to take. Sales might be down because customers are pulling the plug, but improving retention rates could involve a multi-layered approach.

2. Increase Accuracy

When you go to a doctor’s office, you’re seeking answers for troubling symptoms. You want relief so you can carry on with your life and its daily demands. When you go to an emergency room, the stakes are higher. You’ve got life-threatening symptoms or injuries you need immediate help with.

You’re also trusting a doctor’s expertise and decision-making abilities. Yes, you know they’re human, so they can make mistakes. Yet you don’t automatically think they’ll make an error in your case. Misdiagnoses frequently happen, though. Estimates place the number as high as 7.4 million per year.

Medical errors can lead to inadequate and delayed care, sometimes even permanent injury and death. For the most part, doctors are troubleshooting the symptoms and data they’re given to reach a diagnosis. It’s not a perfect process, but AI can help improve accuracy. AI can quickly analyze data from diagnostic tests, medical histories, and symptoms. It won’t overlook patterns in the information or become influenced by high-stress environments.

3. Boost Creativity

Creative ideas seem to come out of nowhere, but there’s a process involved. Brainstorming is part of it, but creativity takes time and space to put concepts on paper. Putting ideas into motion and to the test is where the real work begins. These stages can become repetitive, taking time away from ideation.

Consider marketing campaigns as an example. There’s a need for fresh ideas with each new promo or product launch. The problem is the team gets busy with designs, social media posts, emails, and videos. It feels like there’s not enough time to come up with something brilliant. So, the team may fall back on recycling old concepts.

What AI can do is help guide the creative process and take over for the more repetitive marketing-related tasks. Topic generators can provide a launchpad for new campaign themes, blog posts, and social media conversation starters. AI programs streamline concept testing and the publishing of posts. The technology can also help create designs and drafts so marketing teams have more time for creating and refining ideas.

4. Prevent Hiring Mistakes

Like doctors, hiring managers don’t follow a perfect process. Many speculate there isn’t much science and logic to hiring. From an outside perspective, hiring managers’ gut instincts and personal preferences appear to rule. There’s a grain of truth there, as humans make snap decisions based on first impressions from resumes and interviews.

Hiring managers must often rely on their instincts from past experiences. Sometimes they prove to be correct, but when they’re not, it can cost an organization. On average, a bad hire ends up costing $15,000. It’s far from chump change, as the consequences may range from lost customers to unfinished tasks.

The use of AI in the recruiting industry gets its fair share of criticism. Some people wonder whether the technology excludes good candidates because they didn’t use the “right” keywords. And HR experts have plenty to say about one-way interviewing software screening responses based on predetermined criteria. Neither 100% human nor computer-based hiring will hit a home run. Combining the two increases efficiency and accuracy by filling the gaps both sides create.

Humanizing Data-Driven Decisions

AI may be the latest invention to make headlines and waves. The technology’s full impact has yet to be realized. In the meantime, questions about how to best leverage its capabilities are being challenged in corporate boardrooms and online forums. While AI is clearly skilled at analyzing and synching data, its ability to completely call the shots is debatable. Like most machines of the past, human guidance is necessary to get the most out of technology’s potential.        

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