Takalani CEO Ashanti AI Podcast on Covid19

7 intelligence facts shaping the recruitment industry

If you think you will land your next job by simply sending your resume and going through a couple of interviews, your expectation about the recruitment industry must radically be revised. You will encounter artificial intelligence (AI) as soon as you click “want to apply” and potentially right up to the moment you receive an offer. You will be speaking to humans and machines. They will be using the little time they have to extrapolate your long-term potential in the company. This could frighten you or you could embrace AI and maximize your chances.

AI is one of the most promising technologies which is changing our world by showing its strength in various sectors like healthcare, retail, transportation, and entertainment. It has developed in the recruitment sector in recent years for searching candidates from large volumes of data, screening candidates’ profiles, interviewing and selecting the most suitable ones, etc. Hence, it can change or modify HR’s role, candidate perspective, or even change a company’s whole environment and policy.

Recruiting the most suitable professional has always been a quagmire. McKinsey and Company is famous for contesting that companies are at war for talent. In today’s world, it couldn’t be truer; people spend and share most of their time and views on social media which becomes an integral part of their life. Social media has shifted hiring patterns in the human resource industry, recruiters started posting job advertisements online to attract candidates, especially after the 2008 financial crisis. We are all familiar with posting and viewing jobs on social media sites such as Glassdoor, LinkedIn, Facebook, and more. However, this creates a significantly huge number of applicants, and hiring the most appropriate talent on time has become laborious to HR.

Candidates further tend to apply for any job that slightly matches their profile. In this tough and competitive economy, it is expected. The role of AI technology is designed to then pick the most suitable candidates with the right skills and personalities to fit within the company’s culture.

1. Recruiting is very expensive for companies

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) estimates that replacing a salaried employee costs 6 to 9 months’ salary on average. The organisation reports that these costs can be exponentially higher when it comes to millennial employees. Additionally, to screen and evaluate a large number of applications for a single job post, companies had to appoint a lot of recruiters which is very expensive, and also the effectiveness and efficiency of digital tools are very high in comparison with a human.

2. There always exists a chance of human cognitive biases

The use of AI within recruitment will remove all bias by focusing purely on facts rather than emotions and sympathies. The rise of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) metrics mean that companies can’t get away with a lack of diversity in the boardroom or in the foyer. Hiring talented and affordable diverse teams remains a challenging endeavour to pursue. To increase diversity without compromising the core objectives of institutions, companies must utilise artificial intelligence to recruit candidates.

Ikea, L’Oreal, Unilever, and Amazon which have used AI-powered recruitment systems like Robot Vera, chatbot called Mya, HireVue Assessments, has assisted in their particular and specialised ways to improve their talent-hiring capabilities. At Ashanti ai, our engineers are behind some of the recruitment systems that candidates use today. We are of the view that companies that won’t adapt aren’t going to survive. Humans are biased and are hard to fix. AI will be biased but will be much easier to fix.

3. Well-designed chatbots can optimise the hiring process

Intellectual chatbots are capable of accessing the calendar of the recruiters to check if they are available, and then schedule the date and time for the relevant candidate. They can interpret resumes and request elucidations. Interacting with applicants one to one, instant messaging conversations on platforms like Facebook Messenger and text messages, chatbots can get some information about the applicant’s experience, answer usual inquiries, and gather a wide range of data and request for a human selection representative to analyse. Black & Van Esch write that Unilever used HireVue and reported that it dramatically increased the speed and quality of the finalists who were subsequently interviewed in person and made offers.

4. Our algorithm must be open to inspection at all times

AI has its own challenges; models can be biased because they are trained by fallible humans. However, iterations can improve the quality of the machine learning models. This is about the ethical discussion of what the algorithm does and how do you know that we play fair as an organisation. Openness is then very important. It will be increasingly significant to develop AI algorithms that are not just powerful and supportive tools, but also be transparent to inspection.

5. Artificial Intelligence will assist HR teams to develop leadership strength

Delegating repetitive tasks to AI, recruiters can focus instead on more creative and strategic matters in their daily routines, as HR managers will shift their focus from operational tasks to a leadership role, motivating and cultivating their teams’ potential and skillsets. In South Africa, over the past years, there has been little investment towards developing human resource management; artificial intelligence presents new opportunities for employers to develop strategic players who can channel the flow of market information for faster and effective decisions.

6. Gamification over the years will replace the traditional resume

Evidence suggests that the CV will be replaced in stages, with creative roles seeing this change in the short term with more structured qualification based roles such as accountant and financial positions changing in the medium term. Senior roles, such as CEO/board positions, will see the CV remain for the longest time, but upon the perceptual shift in acceptance of change, along with the unquestioned capabilities of these technologies, these new application methods will see the CV removed for all roles. The introduction of smart assessment tools such as gamification and video analysis technologies will be at the forefront of this modification, matrices will deliver more objective assessments of candidates and enable faster and fairer applications boosting the candidates and the employers by reducing fallout rates and reducing bias.

7. Salary negotiations will still require human-to-human interaction

It is unchallenged that face-to-face meetings hold significant value irrespective of any AI within the process. These meetings will be valuable twofold. Firstly it enables the recruiter and the company to establish if the candidate is indeed as good a fit as the algorithms have suggested. Second, it allows candidates and HR teams to discuss the cost to the company, contractual obligations, and more.

Want to know more – Contact us on 011 712 1300; email info@ashanti.ai or visit our website.

Source: BIZ Community

Takalani Madzhadzhi (FASSA) is the Chief Executive Officer of Ashanti AI

The untapped power of artificial intelligence in the retail industry

The global retail industry is undergoing tremendous disruption as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Omicron variant adds new problems to the global supply chain industry. It certainly isn’t a Black Friday but a dark Friday. Consumers have veered online as a result of the coronavirus and this has led to massive wealth gains for e-commerce startups and technology giants. Rand Merchant Bank calculates that the value of the e-commerce industry will be R225 Billion in 5 years.

At Ashanti AI, we believe that a lot of money is at stake and agile players can even tap into more investment opportunities. Strategic planning will require the power of big data and artificial intelligence.

As a retailer, you are faced with a network of decisions that are often ambiguous and volatile. And it’s upon this background that most decisions are made. The implications are vast and will determine the winners and losers in the market.

KPMG emphasized on this year’s quarterly reflection on the retail sector that, “ The recent crisis has drawn a stark line under any indecision: the choices retailers make in the coming months will influence their success over the next 5 years or more.”

Retailers need to change strategy

Think about this real-life scenario, it seems strategic for many executives to minimize store chains, and downscale investment on the physical property because consumer behaviour has shifted. At the same time, a study by Pargo reveals that online purchases only account for 1% of total retail sales. This statistic may seem insignificant and might steer other executives to invest more in physical property because 99 % of the total sales come from offline services. Both of these extreme choices are not winning choices.

The reason for this is simple; consumers have multiple options and they are exercising all of them. They are not necessarily offline or exclusively online. They are considering many factors such as price, delivery, shopping experience, security, and more. They may be using the physical stores to browse products but purchase them online instead. For a retail chain, these permutations involve multiple stores.

Let us complicate these retail strategic decisions by factoring in macro and international forces that are beyond our control. Take, for example, the July economic riots that were unforeseen, and no plans were devised to deal with such a retail disruption at such a scale.

Many business owners whose shops were looted are faced with tough choices. Is it better to rebuild a smaller store in a shopping centre or reconstruct the same one again or reduce the number of stores in your retail chain?

All of these considerations require making sense of qualitative and quantitative data to make intuitive business decisions that are customer-centric. Intelligence can also reveal new opportunities that aren’t obvious to see. Did you know that it is possible for a physical store to have weak sales and profit but is a strong contributor to the overall retail performance? This is what we call the halo effect.

The retail industry is evolving and technology is an enabler for innovative business strategies and execution. Big data, predictive analytics, and artificial intelligence empower businesses to build solutions and products that smash their everyday costs. They further provide a journey map of the customer that informs executives of profitable and sustainable management decisions they can explore.

It is not about algorithms but competitive insights

Our work with one of Africa’s largest online grocery platform operators demonstrates that data alone is not enough but excellent machine learning models are necessary for converting big data into insights. Retail competition is at an all-time high. Entrepreneurs need to make inventory management decisions, demand forecasting, track and respond to consumer behaviour, monitor the competition, and create marketing activities with quantifiable returns on investment. All these choices happen in different departments but at the same time, they are choices that influence each other.

Predictive analytics empowers you to order the right amount of stock so that stores won’t end up with too much or too little. However, artificial intelligence is more than just algorithms, it is about creating the perfect shopping experience.

One example is heat mapping in the store. The hybrid of cameras and computer vision reveals which products are available picked up, which are returned, and where the customer goes after departing the shelf. You can utilize this intelligence to create experiences that expand engagement with products and encourage shoppers to learn more. More and more creative technology products will continue to come out, retailers who don’t adapt might not survive.

By Takalani Madzhadzhi (FASSA) is the Chief Executive Officer of Ashanti AI


Want to know more – Contact us on 011 712 1300; email info@ashanti.ai or visit our website

Ashanti AI Partners with Locstat

Further Together – Ashanti AI Partners with Locstat to Drive Next Generation Data Intelligence

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together” (African Proverb)

Locstat, a leader in graph powered Artificial Intelligence (AI) and event processing for next generation data intelligence, today announced its partnership with Ashanti AI, a leading AI data science specialist in Supply Chain Industry, to give customers a more comprehensive data intelligence service to improve efficiency, increase profitability and enhance customer experience.

“We are enthusiastic about the real value that we can offer through our collaboration,” said Sanjay Daya, Chief Marketing Officer at Locstat. “Our comprehensive data intelligence platform, backed up with enhanced machine learning models from Ashanti AI, will help take our customers to the next level and be able to do even more with their data.”

The partnership will bring phenomenal big-data ready, next generation capabilities to any industry in South Africa and internationally. The collaboration of data science and intelligent software systems will bring uniquely packaged Augmented Intelligence products in the recommender system, predictive maintenance and Internet of Things (IoT) space.

“Through a combination of our organisation’s respective strengths, we will provide an enhanced, value added offering to our clients,” said Takalani Madzhadzhi, Chief Executive Officer, at Ashanti AI. “We all know the power of collaboration. We appreciate the value of working with extraordinary companies to deliver excellence. We are stronger together and can go further together.”


About Ashanti AI

An established AI company, based in Johannesburg, South Africa, Ashanti AI is a strategic partner and associate of Argility Technology Group (ATG). Our experienced data scientists use their extensive specialities to create innovative AI products in Predictive Maintenance, Warehouse Labour Management, and bespoke AI solutions.

For more information visit www.ashanti.ai

Takalani Madzhadzhi, Chief Executive Officer, Ashanti AI
Email: takalanim@ashanti.ai

About Locstat

Based in Cape Town, South Africa, Locstat provides next generation software solutions through our graph-powered AI and event processing capabilities. We are passionate about illuminating the unseen in your organisation’s digital environment to realise the true value in your data.

For more information visit www.locstat.co.za

Sanjay Daya, Chief Marketing and Sales Officer, Locstat

Tel: +27 (0) 21 6833624
Mobile: +27 (0) 845972372
Email: sanjay@locstat.co.za

African tech startups winners at OCP

African tech startups winners at OCP mining challenge in Morocco

Four African tech startups have been named winners of a mining challenge run by Moroccan state-owned firm OCP Group, earning the chance to trial their solutions at one of the company’s mines.

The OCP Challenge was designed to find solutions faced by OCP Group, which sits on 70 per cent of the world’s phosphate reserves, including boosting maintenance capabilities, improving mined ore quality, managing mining equipment better, and improving safety during periods of low visibility.

More than 200 startups applied for the challenge, with 12 selected to go to Morocco and participate in a bootcamp, working with OCP experts to build a pitch. The bootcamp concluded with a demo day, where startups presented their solutions to the mine, and ultimately four winners were selected.

They included two from Morocco, project management platform PilliotY and GSTS, as well as South African AI platform for asset health and performance management Kriterion and Tunisian robotics firm Enova Robotics. These four winners will now implement their solutions at the OCP Benguerir mine during a three-month experiment phase.

The other eight startups that took part included four from Morocco, namely Peacock, Smart On, 100AI and Farasha, as well as Ashanti AI (South Africa), SolutionIQ (Senegal), InstaDeep (Tunisia) and Astral Aerial (Kenya).

For more information contact Ashanti AI on 011 712 1300,  info@ashanti.ai or visit our website www.ashanti.ai

Source: Disrupt Africa

Grindstone fifth cohort

Meet the 10 startups selected for Grindstone Accelerator’s fifth cohort

Venture capital (VC) company Knife Capital today announced the names of the 10 companies selected for its fifth Grindstone Accelerator programme.

The names of the companies — which include a data analytics and marketing automation tool, a startup in the mobility sector and an Internet of Things (IoT) point of sale solution — were revealed at an event held at Deloitte’s Green Room in Johannesburg (with attendees pictured above).

Grindstone, which is jointly owned by Knife Capital and Thinkroom Consulting, assists high-growth innovation-driven small businesses to become sustainable and fundable through a year-long programme. This latest cohort is sponsored by the SA SME Fund and Deloitte.

For perhaps the first time in the history of the accelerator programme, which was first run in 2014, black-owned companies make up the majority of the participants of this cohort.

The accelerator has run three cohorts so far. In November last year Knife Capital announced the names of those selected for a fourth cohort which is currently under way (see this story). So far all the cohorts have been run in Cape Town. This is the first time a programme will be run in Gauteng.

Knife Capital today announced the names of the 10 companies selected for its fifth Grindstone Accelerator

While Knife Capital launched a call for applications in March, which closed on 22 April, the VC’s partner Keet van Zyl today told Ventureburn that the 10 companies were chosen from 400 applications.

Here are the 10 companies that have been selected for the fifth cohort:

LeadRobot is a Joburg-based startup founded in August last year by Daniel and Devon Solomon. The startup has developed a data analytics and marketing automation tool that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to enrich, cleanse and predictively score incoming leads in real time to empower sales and marketing technologies and teams.

Crayon is a Joburg based talent-sourcing platform, founded in February last year by Derrick Carolin, is designed from the bottom up to ensure candidates leave feeling reinvigorated and employers hire right, first time.

Farosian is a Joburg based specialist social media company founded in 2015 by CEO Farhad Bhyat.

MSat Global is a Joburg based digital satellite and IP technology solutions founded in 2007 by CEO Zweli Mkhuma.

Lüla and its app (its name means “easy” in isiZulu) connects corporate commuters to private shuttles. Lüla was founded by Xabiso Nodada and Velani Mboweni (the nephew of Finance Minister Tito Mboweni). The Cape Town based startup is currently running a campaign to raise R2.5-million in return for giving up an 8.5% equity stake, through local equity crowdfunding platform Uprise.Africa. With nine days to go it’s raised R353 000.

Excel@Uni is a Cape Town based technology partner for universities and funders to help students excel at university. The startup was co-founded in 2013 by CEO Lungelo Gumede and CPO Ludwick Marishane, the man behind Dry Bath gel.

WizzPass is a Joburg based visitor management and contractor management system in Africa. Founded in 2015 by Bradley Hornby, Ulrich Stark and Tyron Fouche (who is no longer involved in the company), the startup got an investment of an undisclosed amount from the Barclays Seeker Fund in 2016, through the Barclays Accelerator in Cape Town, according to a report by tech site Disrupt Africa at the time.

Marc1 is an Johannesburg based Internet of Things (IoT) point of sale solution that tracks customer mobile and wifi footprint to help retail companies sell more. In August last year the startup won the award for best commercial IoT solution at the third annual MTN Business IoT Conference

Ashanti-AI helps businesses to solve their problems. The Joburg-based company mainly focus on data engineering, analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI).

LiquidGold looks at the sanitation with unique waterless technology and nutrient recovery solutions. The Johannesburg based company was founded by CEO Orion Herman and Simone Fillis in 2014.

*Correction: Crayon is based in Johannesburg, not Cape Town and was founded in February last year by Derrick Carolin, not Tracey Ashington as we had it initially. We regret the error.

For more information contact Ashanti AI on 011 712 1300, info@ashanti.ai or visit our website www.ashanti.ai

Source: Ventureburn