Artificial Intelligence: Should you develop technology in-house or hire a provider? 

The economic challenges brought by the Covid-19 pandemic have not halted investments made in artificial intelligence technology. In fact, many companies increased their investments in AI in response to the current health crisis. 

A report by the Mckinsey Global Institute estimates that by 2030, companies that successfully implement AI in their operations will double their cash flow, while those who are unable to do so will see a reduction of 20% in the same indicator. Furthermore, Accenture Research estimates AI could double economic growth in developed countries by 2035. The U.S. would benefit the most, with GDP growth going from 2,6% to 4,6% per year.

Relying on artificial intelligence in order to optimize processes is the most rational choice in our technologically advanced, results-driven world. If a company does not invest in it now, it will likely fall behind. 

However, there is still an obstacle standing in the way of organizations that want to invest in this technology: a highly competitive job market and not enough data scientists and AI specialists to go around. In 2018, there was a deficit that varied between 140.000 to 190.000 of these professionals, which also contributes to high turnover rates, as companies scramble to hire from the same limited group of people.

Data scientists are highly skilled workers, and their scarcity drives up their salaries as well. Thus, building an internal data science team can be extremely costly. Furthermore, building the infrastructure for AI is fairly complicated, and time is a necessary ingredient to obtain more accurate results, as any model that is created needs to be tested various times so that patterns can be identified.

Still, if companies wish to remain competitive, they need to dig deeper and understand their workforce, what characteristics should be developed in teams in order to succeed and identify the employees ready to lead and inspire others. And on a larger scale, this is impossible to accomplish without the use of AI.

And while the world saw many economic difficulties due to the Covid-19 health crisis, companies have still shown interest in investing in Artificial Intelligence during this period. Rocketmat, for example, grew 370% in 2020, driven by new contracts in Brazil and North America in the healthcare and retail sectors.

This goes to show that a more practical solution is to hire an AI technology provider to help the organization gain insight from data. While AI companies still have to face high costs to develop the technology and maintain a team of experts, they are able to focus solely on developing solutions, delivering higher quality results. And when you do the math, paying for a specialized provider is still cheaper than trying to develop in-house AI softwares.

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