"We know machine learning is already proving its worth in the financial
services sector, so there’s no reason why it can’t lend a hand to
enterprise technology. And more specifically, the process that time
forgot — the tedious expenses process." insist Chris Baker, managing director of UK Enterprise at Concur.
What reactions did people have to the movie trailer for Morgan (which was created entirely — and for the first time — by an AI bot, and a pretty famous one at that)?
Which is a fair reaction. Computers can now write, read, learn and speak. And for some, this is pretty scary — people are terrified that bots will snatch their jobs and eventually take over the world and render humans useless (films like I, Robot haven’t helped this).
Many people naturally hold irrational fears. Just look at the amount of individuals terrified of sharks when, in actual fact, they’re much more likely to be killed by shopping on Black Friday. So when it comes to machine learning, businesses shouldn’t shy away, they should embrace it and make it work for them.
Previously, AI was only something to which techie people in Silicon Valley had access; this is no longer the case. The technology’s growing pervasiveness is seen in the increasing popularity of service bots and digital assistants like Alexa and Siri getting constantly smarter.
It’s great that companies like Sift Science, which recently received $30 million in funding, plan to use machine learning and artificial intelligence to predict and prevent fraud everywhere online — especially with reports suggesting card issuers and banks could be saving $12 billion annually with the help of machine learning fraud-detection systems.
We know machine learning is already proving its worth in the financial services sector, so there’s no reason why it can’t lend a hand to enterprise technology. And more specifically, the process that time forgot — the tedious expenses process.
Machine learning to the rescue
As it stands, machine learning hasn’t been used to detect dodgy expenses, though we’re certainly moving in the right direction for that soon to become a reality. But how much of an issue is internal expense fraud? And what might bots detecting our expense anomalies look like?
Worryingly for businesses, dodgy expenses are increasingly becoming a cultural norm — one which is seriously affecting bottom lines. From government to the private sector, high-profile cases of this are commonplace. But digging deeper than the headlines, at Concur we found that 23 percent of employees thought it was acceptable to fudge their expenses, coupled with the Financial Fraud Action revealing a financial scam was committed once every 15 seconds in the first half of 2016.
Can machine learning swoop in to save the day for businesses (and the dodgy expenses process)?