Will Gia be Your Next Secretary?

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If you have an Alexa device in your home or office, you already know how handy it can be. You can ask Alexa for basic information, like the weather. Or you can have Alexa perform more complicated tasks, like order an Uber for you. With more than tens of millions of Alexa devices sold last year, it was only a matter of time before other versions of Alexa began popping up to meet different needs. 

Introducing Gia

One of the newest iterations of Alexa is Gia, a digital finance assistant designed to help finance executives and staff. Instead of asking an employee to pull reports, a CFO can Gia. That conversation might go something like this:

"Gia, give me an AR update on Customer X." 

"Ok, it looks like Customer X has an outstanding balance of $15,000 with $12,000 overdue. There are two overdue invoices of $6,000 each." 

But Gia doesn't simply provide information. She can also perform tasks, like sending a promise to pay letter. In fact, by connecting Gia with your company's enterprise data pools (she connects with major software like SAP and Oracle), you can turn Gia into a very capable digital assistant who can send invoices, perform complex predictions, and even provide conversational support to your staff and customers. There are multiple types of Gias, and each is customized for the user. There are Gias for finance executives, Gias for billing departments, Gias for collections departments, and several more.  

Other AI Options

Gia isn't the only option for businesses, though. Amazon is working to create specific Alexa devices for businesses. Microsoft is hoping to bring Cortana back from the brink of extinction by offering more business-centric integrations to turn it into a realistic option for businesses. It's no wonder these companies are working so hard on these products. According to the Digital Journal, nearly 60% of enterprises are already using or beginning to try AI integrations in their businesses. 

However, there isn't a clear leader in the business category like there is for personal use. And it isn't clear if this is something businesses will genuinely be able to implement and use. There are certainly risks to consider. 

Risk vs Reward

Many people hesitate to turn over any level of power or control to machines, which is understandable since AI is nearly impossible to understand. After all, who can forget the headlines Facebook's AI made last year when it was shut down for creating its own language? And even though AI is terrific at recognizing patterns and predicting trends, it cannot predict its own failure. 

But for most people, rewards like improved efficiency and accuracy outweigh the risks.