It's easy to be swayed by doom and gloom headlines questioning whether artificial intelligence (AI) will soon replace certain human jobs for good, or, more outlandishly, become a sentient cause for concern. Thanks Terminator.
Realistically however, entrepreneurs and professionals in the IT space agree that AI has inspired some of the industry's biggest breakthroughs, as well as supported business development for thousands of companies across Australia.
BITS Technology, a full-service IT firm based on the Gold Coast, is one such company that has watched its business skyrocket with the help of AI and machine learning tech.
Rejecting the idea that AI is a threat to jobs and business growth, Kane Sajdak, one of the co-founders of BITS, says it can provide the tools for entrepreneurs to work more efficiently on bigger projects.
"AI has allowed us to increase the services we offer, but it's also allowed us to tackle more work and larger clients without having to increase our staff headcount as dramatically as we would have otherwise," says Sajdak.
"From a business perspective it's really helped us, and we continue to leverage it as an advantage over competitors that are doing IT the old way."
BITS uses machine learning to help identify trends in hardware failures, as well as component failures within systems or infrastructure.
This means that they can see a distinctive pattern where certain hardware might be at risk of failing and resolve IT issues before they even occur.
The company also uses AI in data security, checking for threats and monitoring data that could be at risk of being hacked.
Bernard Mangelsdorf and Kane Sajdak, founders of BITS Technology Group
"The sort of information we're getting, we're talking literally hundreds of millions of pieces of information that would take analysts years to go through, we can do it in an instant," says Sajdak.
"That way we're using the power of big data to make actionable outcomes for businesses of all kinds."
Sajdak also says AI is more common in Australia than people might think.
The rise of chatbots is another example of how businesses are using the tech to a business development advantage.
"A good example of commonplace AI is chat bots. If you talk to tech support for any number of companies at the moment, chances are they have chat bots," he says.
"You don't even know you're talking to AI half the time. There's a lot of this at the moment, where people are interfacing with AI and they don't even know. It's so well done that its seamless."
As for the future of BITS, Sajdak is excited to continue seeing his company evolve with the help of machine learning.
"The most exciting is that we have the ability to work with much larger organisations that wouldn't normally look twice at a firm our size," he says.
"We can offer the same level of service as the big firms because we're about working smarter, not harder."
This feature was written in partnership with BITS Technology Group.
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