Cognitive AI will define how companies compete in the future. “With that said, let's establish a clear portrayal of what exactly is AI,” begins Simon Robinson, CEO of Level. According to Robinson an IT veteran, ‘Intelligent Automation is a spectrum.’ RPA sits at the lower-end of the spectrum and uses macros; cognitive computing occupies the top end and uses algorithms. As such, while RPA is the road to AI, Robinson sees Level's state-of-the-art cognitive AI platform as the destination; a slice of the future.
Level's main focus has been deploying cognitive intelligence in shared service operations to automate complex tasks and decisions, with or without human intervention. "We are using AI to decentralize and automate knowledge and human behaviors, whereas the majority of vendors are using it as an analytical tool," states Robinson.
Given the company's one-of-a-kind strategy, today, the Level platform is live and scalable with multiple cognitive AI applications running in UK FTSE 100 size companies in the commercial sector and state government. The cloud-based platform runs on AWS and all applications built on top of it are inherently scalable and multi-tenanted. To substantiate with a use case, a shared service operator in healthcare is using Level's application to support an unlimited number of clients. "Cloud is ubiquitous, which means our application is ubiquitous, saving the client associated costs in hiring shift workers or additional office spaces.”
While Agile delivery is at the heart of all of Level's deployments, Robinson introduces the concept of 'fragile delivery,' and says, "It's important to understand that AI is a relatively new concept for companies accustomed to traditional methods. However, once the workforce gains confidence in AI, they love it."
The best aspect about the Level platform is that it can be used across business operations to gain valuable insights in no time. For example, Level takes the knowledge of the people working in an Accounts Payable division and builds it into AI applications. A Level Cognitive Agent can engage with a supplier through a chat window and offer assistance similar to or even better than a human. “Any organization’s two biggest assets are its data and people. We harness both and enable clients to deliver them as AI business applications and deliver them 7x24,” mentions Robinson.
We are using AI to decentralize as well as automate knowledge and human behaviors, whereas the majority of vendors are using it as an analytical tool
Level’s Ask Procure is another intuitive cognitive intelligence solution, built specifically to identify the correct procurement channel for goods and services as well as easily track the status of documents from demand through to delivery. With Ask Procure, companies can decrease call volumes by 80 percent, and procurement teams can focus on efficiency savings and enhanced user experience. Similarly, the company's Ask People is an absence management application that reduces absence rates, whilst providing a better human user experience for managers and being fair to all employees. If that's not all, the company has also designed next-gen applications for payroll reconciliation and a parental leave calculator.
"By using Cognitive AI to automate knowledge, decisions and processes in a way that is supportive, the opportunity exists to remove inconsistencies in the way in which businesses execute policies. This has been Level’s focus over the last two years," explains Robinson.
The future holds even more promising prospects for Level and they are expanding both in the U.S. and Europe. The fact that the company is fully funded is another marker of their strong market position. Reflecting on AI's game changing possibilities, Robinson ends on a thought-provoking note and says, "When you are dealing with AI, you have to approach it like you are dealing with people. AI is like deploying ‘staff’, but rather than them being flesh and blood, it is software. Once you have got your head around it, there is no stopping the ideas about how you can use this technology in your business!"