Meet ‘AI’ our new Internal Comms colleague

Meet AI, (s)he will be joining the Internal Communications team very soon! AI knows all about us and what we are working on and who with…

AI ‘Artificial Intelligence’ may not be something you have come across in Internal Comms and if that is the case, then you should start getting familiar with AI very soon.

Artificial Intelligence will…

  • Index and save every single file, document, message or conversation automatically
  • make ‘smart’ decisions and connect relevant ‘data’ together
  • reduce, what I call, the ‘washing machine’ phase, aka the first 90 days in a new job
  • present itself in the form of ‘bots’ (but I’m not addressing that topic in this post)
  • understand who and what should be connected…

…and all this will happen through the formation of ‘Knowledge Graph

Knowledge graphs are a fairly recent development in how data is stored, searched and connected. Most people will have heard about Google Knowledge Graph.

Google’s Knowledge Graph

The Knowledge Graph is a knowledge base used by Google to enhance its search engine’s search results with semantic-search information gathered from a wide variety of sources. Knowledge Graph display was added to Google’s search engine in 2012, starting in the United States, having been announced on May 16, 2012.” (wikipedia/Knowledge_Graph)

This concept has transformed the way we search Google so much so that the it is now used in many data management resources. One of the most obvious one I can think of is Microsoft’s Office 365, in the form of applications such as Delve.

Delve

Delve* uses data in O365 and Outlook contacts, to let you view documents your colleagues are working on. In addition it provides you with a platform to highlight and share documents it believes are important to your projects and colleagues.

Built on Microsoft’s internal artificial intelligence** learning tools, Delve uses Office Graph to determine what is relevant to you.

If you’re part of a team working on a document or project, Delve will serve it as a high-priority document. At the same time, it will show you other documents you have collaborated on.

It also uses your organisational structure to help pinpoint relevance. The result is a set of documents that should be relevant to the work you’re currently doing, being surfaced automatically.

With the implementation of such artificial intelligence making ‘informed decisions’ about what we see and how we see it on our computers, it goes without saying that this will require the heavy involvement of internal communications in many capacities, such as:

  • Roll out of Office365 and/or similar packages to the company
  • A clear understanding of just how it will change the way colleagues work together
  • Understanding of how, the likes of, Delve and other applications fit together and share data
  • How to encourage the uptake (Essential for O365’s successful integration)
  • Being the lead champions in order to set the standard and guide employees on optimal use.
  • Awareness of useful features for manager and the business benefits (Eg. MyAnalytics which will enable manager to view how teams work and what their time is spent on)

Big Brother?

I know many employees could see this as a ‘big brother’ approach but in reality it will infact enable managers to make smarter decisions, for example, to make better use of their team resource or to provide more accurate bid writing (factoring in more accurate costing for time spent)

This article has the potential to be very long, what with such a complex and nerdy interesting topic, but I will summarise here by saying…

…Personally I see the coming age of artificial intelligence in business as a huge leap forward for many businesses. It will be akin to having a very efficient business admin team who are dedicated to sorting, saving, matching and surfacing (a bit like displaying, more recent and most relevant without the need to search) and continually evolving and learning about what constitutes ‘important data’.

Knowledge Graph will enable Internal Comms teams to identify and measure employee sentiment towards campaigns, policies and business decisions which puts us in a far better starting place when developing our next ‘internal communication strategy’.

Controversy

Yes! with certain plug-ins there will be the ability to see just how effective employees are, and how long they spend working on various things, but this is not a bad thing for the conscientious.

It may even mark the ‘beginning of the end’ for those who flounce around not really pulling their weight… but that is whole different story.

For a different angle on O365, read my post ‘O365 OhOh 24/7

Useful links

*https://support.office.com/en-gb/article/What-is-Office-Delve-1315665a-c6af-4409-a28d-49f8916878ca

**https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernardmarr/2017/10/02/the-amazing-ways-microsoft-uses-ai-to-drive-business-success/

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