Do (A)I have superpowers?
We at Sofigate invest in large-scale adoption of AI in professional work – and AI is for all of us!
We are building our future with artificial intelligence. We want AI to be part of every employee’s daily life.
“Sofigate has set a clear goal for artificial intelligence (AI): every employee in the company should adopt AI in their daily work by the end of 2023,” says Sami Karkkila, our CEO.
“This is not only to improve productivity, but also to ensure that every employee is capable of even more demanding tasks.”
Currently, it is estimated that half of our 700+ employees are already using AI in their work. We’ve also launched an internal coaching programme, where the most advanced AI users support and coach those who are just starting to use AI.
Superpowers at hand
The rapid development of generative AI is enabling experts to focus on more impactful tasks.
“AI gives employees superpowers that enhance their creativity and productivity, enabling them to deliver better value to customers,” believes Karkkila.
“While AI brings many benefits, the responsibility for the quality of work and information security will always remain with the experts, which makes sure that our customers receive the best possible service.”
Artificial intelligence is changing business
Almost all human activity today relies on information technology (IT). The development of information technology is the responsibility of the IT function, which generally follows the IT industry’s operating models with a 2-5 year lag.
What’s happening now is the adaptation to agile development, which typically involves reviewing and prioritising business needs and monitoring results in three-month cycles. From a business perspective, little has changed, even though the emperor has new clothes.
AI will revolutionise the way we think and operate today.
AI brings two major changes
1. Change in the concept of time: with AI, planning and execution can take place in hours, days or weeks at most. A reasonable planning cycle is three weeks.
2. Business will have the superpowers of design: it’s easy to get excited when your idea is refined into a much better result in a matter of a few hours.
Few business leaders get excited about things like defining reports, but that can change if the leader can define a customer need in a few sentences and instantly see the AI’s suggestion of the end result. From there, the technology has been designed by business itself; a new business technology super-expert has emerged.
“The possibilities are endless: I know of a case where AI was used to refine return policies for an online store. In three hours, we came up with a solution suitable for further development, which would have taken weeks to develop using traditional methods,” Karkkila recalls.
Make sure AI does not become the new IT
“The use of AI will crawl at a snail’s pace if current IT lessons are applied,” says Karkkila.
“First, the use is banned because the risks are not known. Then you experiment, and then you organise the production. This is a sure way to fall behind.”
“In schools, too, students are enthusiastic about using AI, but many educational institutions seem to be taking the precaution of banning its use rather than jumping to the forefront of development. It’s good to remember that AI activates human creativity, and does not paralyse it. At the same time, it brings equality, because everyone will be a good communicator, regardless of talent or language background.”
“The use of AI will crawl at a snail’s pace if current IT practices are applied to it”
“Large companies and countries can invest billions in AI. The Nordic companies don’t have the same possibilities for that. That’s why we need to be the best to apply and use AI.”
AI makes users more equal, putting everyone on a level playing field. But this requires access to the right tools.
“We need to make AI accessible to everyone at a reasonable cost;just as internet access is available at every home and a mobile phone comes automatically as an employment benefit. Our society’s services and competitiveness require it.”
Investing in the use of AI
“At Sofigate, we are enabling everyone to use commercial AI and we expect everyone to adopt it by the end of 2023. This applies to every employee, regardless of role or position.”
We cover the cost of AI services for our employees, in the same way that we covers the phone bill or a lunch allowance. We are committed to continuous innovation, testing new platforms and evaluating the benefits of each tool according to function.
“A future knowledge worker without AI is like imagining working today without communication tools (like phone, email, collaboration tools). We can’t imagine an employee coming to us to learn how to use communication tools. That’s why in the future we will also expect our employees to master the use of AI.”
The potential of AI must be harnessed now
“We are in the fortunate position that our business is likely to be among the winners of the AI revolution. For years, we’ve been delivering customer solutions only on platforms from the world’s leading technology companies – ServiceNow, Salesforce and SAP,” says Karkkila.
Companies are now investing billions in both the development and deployment of AI. Both the private and the public sector are rapidly moving to off-the-shelf AI platforms rather than software development. AI is making coding more efficient, and labour productivity can be multiplied by eliminating coding and making AI do what humans want it to do. Despite the tightening market situation, the market for no/low-code platforms is growing by 30% per year.
“If the business sector can harness the superpowers of design and widely adopt AI-enabled platforms, the Nordics have the potential to achieve a significant productivity leap. Moreover, the high hopes for digitalisation will be truly realised through AI, both in the public sector and in enterprises. All this is within our reach. It is up to us to seize the opportunity,” Karkkila encourages.
“We need to be the best at applying AI.”
Our AI theses in a nutshell
- AI should be available for everyone in workplaces and schools
- Operating models need to be reformed faster (3 months -> 3 weeks)
- AI gives business people the superpowers of design
- AI makes people think and experiment; it activates, not passivates
- The Nordics must aim to be the leaders in the use of AI
- Software development should be replaced with AI-enabled platforms