Your ERP solution is supposed to make your work life easier and think like you do, but does it? Automated intelligence (AI) breakthroughs in ERP software are turning work processes into smarter solutions. See how you can work smarter with AI ERP.

Artificial vs. Automated vs. Autonomous

When you first start considering AI technology in the workplace, you might see a variety of "A" terms. Many people will use them interchangeably, but there are differences. Traditionally in the world of technology, AI has meant "artificial intelligence." But sometimes using the word "artificial" has brought unenthusiastic connotations. Employees' fear of being replaced by robots may have started in the movies, but the closer businesses move to AI tech, the more real the fear has become in the workplace.

To quell some of the predictable worry, consider what these three terms actually mean:

  • Artificial intelligence is a form of technological advances that allow computer-driven systems to anticipate the decisions a human would make based on the information present. Not much different than a car that turns the headlights on when it senses it's dark outside.
  • Automated intelligence, or machine learning, takes technology one step further and acts upon perceived data and changes in data. Think IoT. When your car and the GPS system interact to find the best route to your destination and recalculate when traffic, accidents or construction inhibit the original route, that's automated intelligence.
  • Autonomous intelligence, much like the scary robot replacement mentality, seeks to perform acts independent of human interaction. If your car decided to drive somewhere without you, it would be autonomous. But don't worry; we're not there yet.

Breaking It Down Into ERP Terms

AI ERP solutions aren't going to drive your business all by itself. But they will work smarter with data, machines and humans to automate many of your business functions so your road to success is shorter and more robust.

Customer Service

AI uses usual language input, which decreases the need for extensive manual user input. This allows the ERP system to proactively support decision making and help solve customer challenges quickly. AI parses the data and brings resources together to solve problems as they occur.

Instead of operating separate phone lines, chat rooms and social media outlook posts, AI can parse multiple sources (sometimes even the product itself), detect customer issues, and suggest answers both directly to the customer and to customer service agents. In cases that can be resolved by an automated action, the system can then deploy the solution automatically with minimal interruption to progress or service.

Maintenance

AI can improve functions in maintenance by creating digital assistants that analyze usage, performance of and damage to machines, tools, vehicles, systems and structures. Automated performance evaluations free up time for more pertinent human tasks while still maintaining operational functionality. This automation can be applied to both predictive and preventative maintenance areas. The core ERP system can then do the following: 

  • Make recommendations
  • Create work orders
  • Organize purchase orders for replacement parts or supplies
  • Produce inspection reports
  • Schedule the maintenance 

Logistics

Much like maintenance planning, AI can automate logistics in the same manner. Using prognostic analytics and machine learning, AI will be able to transform ERP systems by anticipating the movement of goods and services from production to warehousing to final destination. AI will be able to integrate the data between manufacturers, suppliers and sales outlets to seamlessly produce and maintain stock levels with little or no disruption in the supply chain and optimum levels of fleet management.

Operational functionality doesn't have to be hard. You can demand more of your ERP solutions. With AI features, your ERP system won't just sense your success; it will help you automate it and work smarter by thinking like you do automatically.