By Rob Hankin – CTO – MD Data & Analytics In today’s competitive landscape, organisations are constantly seeking ways toRead article
Step Up Your Analysis Game With AI & Conversational Analytics
Andrew Dinning, Senior Solution Architect, explores how to achieve faster, easier business insights by effortlessly combining the power of machines with the intuition of humans, using AI and conversational analytics.
Have you used any of these common applications?
- Language translation applications such as Google Translate
- Word processors such as Microsoft Word and Grammarly that check text for grammatical errors
- Personal assistant devices such as Amazon Echo, Google Home, or Apple HomePod.
If you answered yes, then you’re already using Natural Language Processing (NLP). We speak to our devices, ask questions, and get answers in plain English.
Voice assistants like Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri are taking over homes all over the world, and naturally this is now spreading into workplaces, too.
What are Natural Language Processing and Conversational Analytics?
In analytics, NLP is used to power conversational analytics. Conversational analytics means extracting insights from data using human speech. Natural language processing (NLP) processes your spoken/typed words to understand what you’re saying, then uses artificial intelligence (AI) to organise data, extract insights, and provide an easy-to-understand answer.
It’s much like asking Alexa how many ounces are in a pound, or what the weather will be tomorrow – but supercharged. It helps even non-techies within your business to become valuable analysts. Conversational analytics are rapidly changing the face of data analytics because it fits with how we all expect to interact with technology.
Why Should Businesses Use Conversational Analytics?
Everyone knows the questions they want to ask of the data, and the insights they’d like to understand. The problem is that only a small percentage of people are “data literate” and know how to analyse data to extract the answers.
NLP and conversational analytics, when you think about it, are the perfect solution for data analytics. Why wade through spreadsheets of complex numbers, when instead you could simply ask, “How did sales perform last year?” and get the insights you need to both understand data, and action it.
From using these devices, we have new expectations about how fast we should be able to access information – at home and at work. All the information we could possibly need is readily available at our fingertips – just a few swipes or taps away.
This is no different from our business insights – we expect answers instantly. Deciding to adopt conversational analytics makes just as much sense as buying an Amazon Echo, it’s just there to make your life that much easier.
Excel Analytics vs. Visual Analytics vs. Conversational Analytics
Most companies begin life with basic, manual analytics by using spreadsheets. This is a great tool for very small businesses and start ups. But as your business grows, your analytics solution must too or you’ll be stuck in what’s known as “Excel Hell.”
That’s when you move into visual analytics. This is visualisation tools such as Microsoft Power BI, QlikView and Qlik Sense. These powerful tools take you away from analysing reams of complex numbers, and they show you the “why” behind your data. Data visualisation tools make it so much easier to dig into business data and find actionable insights, to help you become a data-driven organisation.
Then we progress onto AI-powered conversational analytics. As we’ve covered, you ask natural language questions of your data, and AI does the work for you. It combines the power and logic of machines, with the intuition and business knowledge of humans. As AI becomes increasingly prevalent and vital, there tends to be more questions about how to leverage it for business advantage.
This is usually delivered as an add-on to visualisation tools. For example, conversational analytics tool Qlik Insight Bot is an add-on to data visualisation platform, Qlik Sense.
In the coming years I feel we’ll have a surge of businesses adopting conversational analytics, because the ability to make fast, data-driven decisions can give businesses the competitive edge.
Benefits of Conversational Analytics: Use Cases
Fast, data-driven decisions for top-level management – a helpful alternative to manually analysing data, as C-suite executives simply don’t have the time.
Arm end users and non-techies with insights – fast – that they need to do their jobs, to remove the bottleneck of waiting for the help of your data analytics or performance teams.
Better understand customers by asking questions about social media posts, customer service call records and sales records to discover what your customers want and exceed expectations.
Detect fraud with an internal audit by finding suspicious transactions or outliers among huge amounts of data so you can rely on your financial reports.
Better understand sales by quarter, year, country, salesperson, or branch to find new ways of improving your numbers.
What is Qlik Insight Bot?
Qlik Insight Bot is one of the leading conversational analytics tools on the market. Because the Insight Bot is built on top of Qlik Sense, unlike standalone products, this unique approach offers the best of both worlds – allowing users to enter an experience conversationally and then transition to visual exploration for deeper understanding and discovery.
It can also be seamlessly and readily accessed through popular collaboration tools such as Microsoft Teams®, Skype®, Slack®, Salesforce®.
Insight Bot supports human ability by suggesting insights, automating tasks and supporting natural language interaction.
How Can Cybit Help You?
You want to get up and running with analytics as quickly and efficiently as possible. Cybit is the UK & Ireland’s number 1 Qlik Partner, and an experienced Qlik Elite Partner. Our team have years of knowledge and first-hand experience of enabling companies to thrive by taking full advantage of actionable business insights. We’re here to configure and tailor your solution with our consulting, empower employees with training, and offer ongoing development and support.
We aim to be your long-term trusted IT advisor as our range of technologies cover data & analytics, business applications, cloud infrastructure – underpinned by our specialist IT services.
Simply get in touch for a free analytics consultation to discuss your needs and requirements, and how we can help you.
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