Artificial Intelligence, why so much hate?

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is one of those subjects where it’s rare to find moderate speakers. I recently took part in a lot of discussions on LinkedIn on this subject. You’re either for it or against it, there’s no middle ground. As far as I’m concerned, I’m very calm.

At N&C, we use AI in our algorithms, notably in the revbell Revenue Management tool we have developed for the accommodation sector. This does not prevent us (quite the contrary) from remaining true to our DNA, which is marked by education, operational common sense and the control of man over machines. We hammer home to our employees and our customers that a well-equipped analyst is better than the best algorithm, that the human element must be at the centre of decision-making, that most Revenue Managers get further with a good, easy-to-drive 308 than with a Formula 1 car that only a handful of people on earth are capable of driving.

We need to educate people about our tools and keep them in control.

The optimization we propose, even though it contains AI, is explained to the user. In a situation where the analyst would intuitively increase his price, Nancie, our Artificial Intelligence, may say and write at the top of the recommendation screen: « the advance is significant and is increasing. However, many cancellations are expected and your price positioning is high. I recommend that you wait a little longer before raising prices ».

AI helped us to do this, to write it. We’re proud of it and our customers are very happy with it. Let’s take it for what it is: just another tool in the toolbox. Without fear, without mystification either, without expecting more than it can deliver.

Keywords: Artificial Intelligence, N&C, Revenue Management, pedagogy, algorithms,