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A Guide to A Career in AI Consulting

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May 2, 2022
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5 minutes
Gizela has almost two decades of experience within the Digital sphere and eagerly awaits the day she can be cloned so she can finally get everything on her daily to-do list done

No, robots have not taken over the consulting industry. But tech is playing a much bigger role in consultancy than we could’ve ever imagined.AI consulting is becoming more of a norm these days. Many companies are adopting the new practices and new AI consulting firms are being established on a daily basis.

What is an AI consultant?

An AI consultant doesn’t equate to “bring your robot to work” scenario, but it’s pretty close. AI consulting is when one uses AI technology in their consulting practices. Companies not only use AI as an analytical tool, but also implement certain AI technologies in the business. They do this to improve processes and propel the business forward.

“In our business, we talk about emerging technologies and how they impact society. We’ve never seen a technology move as fast as AI has to impact society and technology. This is by far the fastest moving technology that we’ve ever tracked in terms of its impact and we’re just getting started.” – Richard Socher

AI consulting services

As one of the fastest growing consulting trends, AI infiltrated most aspects of the industry (and for the better). Some services offered by AI consultants include:

Computer vision development

Business operations can become more efficient with the help of computer vision development. This process extracts actionable insights from images and live and offline video frames.

Machine learning and data science

You can now create your own self-learning algorithms that extracts insights from collected data while reducing errors and maximizing accuracy.

Predictive analytics

Custom-built AI apps predict customer behavior and business outcomes.

NLP & text analysis

Custom-built AI apps using NLP extract meaning from natural text data and perform customer-centric initiatives.

Process Automation

This AI technology automates certain processes. This increases productivity, reduce labor and costs.

Voice-recognition technology

This enables people to interact with a business’s products or services simply by using their voice. This voice-recognition technology reminds one of voice assistants.

The industries that currently benefit the most from AI consulting is:

  • Marketing & sales
  • Banking
  • Logistics
  • Retail
  • Insurance
  • Healthcare

The benefits of using AI technologies

Although AI technology is still met with some scepticism (mainly due to Hollywood with robots taking over all over the place). AI holds a lot of benefits for consultants and business’s alike. These include the following:

  • AI can perform tasks much quicker than a human can.
  • AI can multitask.
  • It dramatically lowers the cost of certain complex processes and tasks.
  • AI can work 24/7.
  • One can use this technology across multiple industries.
  • AI automation leads to higher production rates.
  • It can enhance the customer experience i.e. chatbots.
  • AI has had a huge impact on healthcare. This technology has made things such as remote patient monitoring a reality.
  • It has also taken the sting out of boring and repetitive tasks. Now “the bot” can take care of it.
  • AI eliminates human-error.

Won’t AI eventually make me redundant?

As AI technology’s presence grows in most consulting trends throughout the years, we often get asked whether embracing AI technologies isn’t speeding up the redundancy of consultants everywhere. And, once again, we hold Hollywood responsible for this silly notion. Although it’s true that AI technology has and can take over certain tasks, it’s simply not possible for AI to completely take over the humans roles. And there are a few reasons for that:

  • AI doesn’t have EQ. That means that it lacks the discernment and empathy needed in many situations and roles.
  • Although AI eases workload, it won’t be able to take it over completely. AI can extract and analyse certain metrics, but it’s not going to be able to understand and manage the human aspects of consulting or build a close business relationship with a client.
  • The same applies to decision making. Although AI can facilitate decision making, there are certain things that AI simply cannot do.
  • AI has actually aided job creation. In certain instances where differently abled individuals were unable to perform certain tasks, AI technology has now made it possible for them to do so.
  • Even though AI has eliminated human errors, technical glitches and bugs are still a real problem.

How to become an AI consultant

If you would like to know how to become an AI consultant, you must first be very honest with yourself. An AI consultant does not just deal with business solutions, they must have a passion and knack at scouting technical opportunities. This requires a skillset that far surpasses the scope of general business consultancy and will require specialised training. There are numerous institutions and training schools where you can upskill yourself or earn an official accreditation. If you’re not sure who’s at the forefront of these types of training and consulting trends at the moment, we highly recommend that you connect with the experts and your fellow consultants here. Once you’ve established that you’re truly interested and skilled in the position, it’s time to start the process:

Prep for the interview

The interview usually consists of three parts: AI strategy, general knowledge, and machine learning. The questions they usually ask and the concepts they generally test are fairly basic within the industry, but you’ll still need to know your stuff to leave a lasting impression. This includes things such as:

  • Overfitting
  • L1/L2 regularization
  • Bias-variance trade-off
  • Bayes theorem
  • Gradient descent

Always remember to analyse and solve any AI task/project from a business point of view. That means your usual long term goals, KPIs, scalability etc. And, if you’re not new to the consulting industry, don’t be surprised if you are tested on your ability to properly structure your thoughts and visions and relay complex concepts in a much simpler way. How to become an AI consultant is fairly easy compared to the mind-shifting hurdles any hard-core consultant faces: WHY become an AI consultant? From this article it’s very clear what benefits a progression into AI technologies has to both businesses and consultants. But whether you have a true passion for the craft is another thing. You decide.