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Automated Decision Making


One of the most challenging problems managers have today is the overbearing influx of information required to make decisions. Couple that to the speed at which decisions must be made, and it is not difficult to appreciate the value of automated decision making.

Over 90 percent of decisions make by operational managers could be made by integrating business intelligence into business process management systems.

In spite of automated decision making being slow to make its mark, the new generation of applications have advanced significantly from prior decision-support systems, making them easier to create and manage than earlier systems.

Previous systems still relied on humans to identify the problems or to initiate the analysis. Business intelligence is now used to fulfil these two prerequisites, meaning decision-making capabilities can now be embedded in the normal flow of work, discrete from human intervention.

 

ADM Techniques

Techniques for automated decision making are drawn from several disciplines, including:

  • Optimization
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Decision theory

Automated decision making is generally characterized in terms of a trade-off between power and generality - the extent to which ADM can be applied to diverse problems.

BPM systems monitor online data in real time, apply codified knowledge or logic, and make decisions, automatically. Where human intervention is required - automated alert messaging attracts human attention.

 

Value of ADM

Automated decision making capabilities help businesses generate decisions that are more consistent than those made by people, quickly moving managers from a point of insight to decision based action. This:

  • Reduces labor costs
  • Leverages scarce expertise
  • Improves quality
  • Enforce policies
  • Respond to customers faster

They key is in identifying which decisions people must make and which can be computerized.

 

ADM and BEM

Related to automated decision making [ADM] are techniques for automated control. This refers to operating systems that are constantly monitored and adjusted. In contrast, 'decision making' is generally used to refer to comparatively high-level tasks with discrete decision points. For instance, continuous monitoring and adjustment of operating factory equipment may be considered a control task, while the scheduling of factory operations may be considered a decision task. See BAM and BEM.

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