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AI can redefine customer experience, say experts

  • AGBI event in Dubai
  • Experts from across globe
  • Panel discussed AI’s power

Artificial intelligence has the potential to transform the customer experience, said a panel of leading experts during a special reception hosted by Arabian Gulf Business Insight (AGBI).

The exclusive invite-only event, sponsored by Oliver Wyman at the Capital Club Dubai on November 15, welcomed an audience of senior business leaders from across the UAE to explore emerging trends, opportunities and challenges brought on by the advancement of artificial intelligence (AI).

It also looked at the best ways for businesses to navigate its widespread influence on people, processes, products and productivity.

The discussion was led by strategy consultant Michael Bayler who was joined by a panel of international AI specialists.

These included Jessica Groopman, a respected Silicon Valley-based analyst; Professor Neil Maiden, director of the UK’s National Centre for Creativity enabled by AI; Mario Rizk, a principal in Oliver Wyman’s Digital Practice; and Noel Tock, founder of digital experience agency Human Made. 

Looking at public perception of AI in the workplace, the panellists agreed that customer experience (CX) would undergo a transformation thanks to AI.

“It’s very tempting to replace individual pieces of workflows with AI, and this is not necessarily the best outcome for customers,” said Noel Tock, who counts AirBnb, TechCrunch and Siemens among his agency’s clients.

“What is the best outcome? Being able to send the right message, to the right person, at the right time. 

Mario Rizk added: “There’s a new set of algorithms around large language models and consumer expectations. And experience will change, and this change will drive product and market change. At the same time, there are conversations around how to resist the rabbit hole of AI. This is the concern.”

The solution does not lie in resisting AI, though, but in learning to leverage its capabilities to foster creative problem solving across business operations, according to Professor Neil Maiden. 

“Creativity and creative problem solving isn’t something that happens occasionally. It’s embedded in the world,” he said.

The group discussed many topics on how AI can transform businessAGBI
The group discussed many topics on how AI can transform business

“Combining generative AI technologies with machine learning, creative search and old fashioned, symbolic AI enables us to come up with new architecture that can deliver augmentations to creative problem solving. 

“What we’ve done is bring all these technologies together to prompt business leaders to be more creative and solve problems in more creative ways.

“Creativity is often seen as a trade-off with productivity, but our observation with these technologies is that there’s a sweet spot with both,” he added. 

The challenges of aggregating a single organisation’s huge volume of data into a single platform and the associated data security challenges were also high on the agenda.

“Companies shouldn’t be talking about their AI strategy,” said Jessica Groopman. “Their real question should be ‘what’s our data strategy, and what is its purpose?’. AI is more useful when there’s broader, better data.”