Episode 18 – Realizing Value from Analytics and AI with Erica Brigance

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In the age of data and analytics, businesses can enhance and make well-informed decisions by leveraging data and technology in their favor. In this episode of the Decisions Now podcast, we talked to Erica Brigance, Vice President of Data Science at Arcbest on how to realize value from analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) projects.  
Co-hosts, Rigvinath Chevala, Evalueserve’s chief technology officer, and Vice President of Marketing Erin Pearson chatted with Brigance on the future of using technology well, ROI (return on investment), demand and value realization, and of course, the hype of ChatGPT. Subscribe to the Decisions Now podcast today, you can find us on SpotifyApple Podcasts, and Amazon Music among other platforms

Future of Using Technology  

“How are you seeing technology changing and, um, in order to help meet customer challenges?” Pearson asked Brigance.  
The biggest change she has seen in the 19 years she’s been with Arcbest is connectivity, Brigance said.  
“We are all connected, and it’s exponentially growing the number of devices and, and people that are part of our connections. So, with that, we’re always evaluating technology and, and new methodologies to deliver solutions to our customers,” she added.  

“The new technology, of course, keeps evolving, but from a business-centric standpoint, typically you want to not always take the shiniest stuff you want to test and try and make sure it stands to the enterprise-grade needs,” Chevala said.  

Instead of focusing on new trending technologies, companies need to identify use cases and understand how these technologies can drive business value or customer value for them. 

Companies must listen to their customers’ challenges, without assuming what they need or how they need to solve those challenges, Brigance said.  
“So, really what I’ll call deep listening to even the things that they’re not explicitly saying, but what are the challenges that they’re up against? And once you identify those challenges, it’s about taking the full suite of technological solutions and understanding what can solve it and where it plays, and then what’s the cost and benefit of exploring that technology,” she added. 

The trio also mentioned its essential for teams to develop their soft skills often and understand emerging technologies to then tie them to relevant challenges when possible.