Jaywing launches consulting practice for artificial intelligence

15 January 2018 Consultancy.uk

Jaywing, a UK-based consultancy specialising in risk and data science, has launched a new practice aimed at assisting clients derive value from Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning. The announcement follows the recent launch of Jaywing’s AI product – Archetype – which enables clients in the lending sector to build vastly more predictive risk models in a fraction of the time.

While AI is already revolutionising the way in which clients explore data, the consulting industry has been slow to adopt technology for its own sake. According technological leaders speaking at a recent conference discussing AI in the professional services sector, this could be because the consulting industry has become a victim of its own success, as it has relied on caution to deliver top results for generations. In the coming year, however, technology research leaders Gartner have identified AI as the next industrial “megatrend,” as effective use of AI increasingly becomes the difference between those businesses that are adopting it to gain an edge on their competitors, and those that are being left behind.

As organisations across the professional services world prepare to adapt to this new operational set-up, British-based Jaywing has put together a new AI consulting service geared to assist clients in their drive for digitally enhanced service offerings. Jaywing’s offer includes reviewing operational processes that could be improved by harnessing the power of AI and machine learning, such as the analysis of vast data sources that may otherwise seem impenetrable.

Jaywing launches consulting practice for artificial intelligence

Building on 20 years of sector experience, the AI Consulting team, under the leadership of Data Scientist Dr Martin Benson, has already established a reputation for data science specialism in the consulting sector. The practice operates across multiple vertical markets, utilising applied machine-learning techniques to solve the modelling challenges presented by IFRS 9. The launch follows the release of a new product, Archetype, to its suite of data science products – a leading-edge AI predictive modelling tool based on a unique application of deep neural nets that effectively solves the “black box” problem preventing the adoption of neural nets in credit scoring.

According to Ben O’Brien, Managing Director, of Jaywing, the new practice will offer the lending sector, in particular, major opportunities, as many organisations do not have their own established data science teams, while very few have the credentials in artificial intelligence, machine learning and data science that Jaywing boasts.

O’Brien said, “Our team specialises in AI, big data, data science, machine learning and data analytics. From advising on the best approach to developing their artificial intelligence capability, to running processes on their behalf and integrating them within an organisation, to supporting an AI build, Jaywing is on hand to support lenders every step of the way with implementing AI in credit risk, and fraud.”

Rob Shaw, CEO, Jaywing added, “Over the next three to five years, AI technologies and predictive data analytics will be one of the most significant competitive differentiators in business. We are excited to pioneer AI technology and provide bespoke support to lenders looking to implement AI across their credit risk and fraud departments. We have the right team, the right technology and the best business model to create extraordinary value for our clients.”

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Two thirds of UK employees not empowered enough to innovate

18 March 2019 Consultancy.uk

A culture of equality can drive innovation at work, but only a third of UK employees feel empowered to innovate at present. This demonstrates a significant disconnect between workers and their bosses in the UK, with 76% of business leaders also claiming they empower employees to be innovative.

Despite innovation increasingly being seen as integral to the survival of businesses, innovation remains relatively difficult to achieve. A lagging disconnect between management and staff remains the driving force behind this. One study by PA Consulting previously confirmed that while 66% of companies believe they will not survive without innovation, only 24% said they had the skills needed for that, and only half thought they had the right leadership in place to change that in time.

In order to find a way around this problem, global consultancy Accenture has completed its own study into innovation, polling around 700 bosses and workers across the UK to do so. The key finding of the research is that companies with a culture of equality can see an individual’s willingness and ability to innovate improved by seven times that of the least equitable workplace cultures. At the same time, an innovation mindset is almost twice as high in the most-equal companies as in typical ones.

91% of employees want to innovate but just 34% in typical United Kingdom companies feel empowered to

What remains clear, however, is that most companies are failing to adequately create an equal culture, where staff of all ranks feel comfortable contributing new ideas. 91% of employees want to innovate but just 34% in typical UK companies feel empowered to. That is higher in the most equal companies, where 75% of staff feel confident making suggestions, compared to just 5% of the least equal, and 34% of typical companies. Since those equal companies are comparatively fewer, when averaged out, only a third of UK staff feel they are empowered to innovate.

That figure stands in stark contrast to the perceptions of UK executives, however.  76% of business leaders in Britain believe that they do indeed regularly empower their employees to innovate. As a result, it seems that leaders mistakenly believe that some circumstances encourage innovation more than they actually do. For instance, they overestimate financial rewards and underestimate purpose.

The opportunity which is presented by addressing this divorce is enormous. Accenture calculates that global gross domestic product would increase by up to £6 trillion over 10 years if the innovation mindset in all countries were raised by 10%.Top 10 workplace culture factors - by strength of impact on innovation mindsetAccording to Accenture, the best way to impact positively on a company’s innovation mindset is through the provision of relevant training – associated with a 10.5% uplift to staff’s confidence innovating. Allowing the freedom for employees to be creative followed, contributing an 8.1% boost, while ensuring that training times are flexible and the firm allows a healthy work-life balance both see a more than 7% improvement. Similarly, remote working being available and being common practice will buoy creativity by 6.9% – further demonstrating the importance of flexible working to improve innovation culture at a firm.

Commenting on the report, Rebecca Tully, executive sponsor for Human Capital and Diversity for Accenture in the UK and Ireland, said, “Our research reveals that a workplace culture of equality is an overlooked driver of innovation within companies. By understanding what motivates their employees and fostering an environment where people feel empowered, business leaders have the opportunity to unleash the innovation required to compete effectively in an era of disruption.”

The research came as part of a global survey by Accenture, which queried more than 18,000 professionals in 27 countries and 150 C-suite executives in eight countries. The overall research determined that an empowering environment is by far the most important of the three culture-of-equality categories in increasing an innovation mindset, which consists of six elements: purpose, autonomy, resources, inspiration, collaboration and experimentation. The more empowering the workplace environment, the higher the innovation mindset score.