10 AI Considerations for the Board

10 AI Considerations for the Board

As Artificial Intelligence (AI) continues to evolve the way we do business, it’s critical for the board to understand how to oversee the development of a thorough approach to adopting AI practices in a secure, ethical, and efficient manner.  

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Here we have outlined considerations for directors as your organization adopts and builds out its AI strategies: 

1. Education and Awareness: 

Become and remain informed of the basics of AI, its capabilities, and its limitations. The world of AI is fast-paced and constantly evolving, thus, crucial for the board to stay informed about new developments, emerging trends, and best practices. This could involve attending workshops, seminars, or courses focused on AI in a business context. The aim is to enable board members to engage in informed discussions and make decisions about AI initiatives. 

2. Establish a Cross-Functional AI Team: 

Facilitate the creation of a cross-functional management team (including representatives from IT, business, legal, ethics, and other relevant departments) that is responsible for the strategic application of AI throughout the organization. This team should be tasked with understanding the AI landscape, identifying potential use cases, assessing risks and benefits, and proposing strategic directions. 

3. Identify and Assess Opportunities: 

With the help of the AI team, recognize potential opportunities where AI can provide value. This might include improving operational efficiency, enhancing customer experience, developing new products or services, or improving decision-making. 

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4. Identify and Assess Risks: 

Ensure that potential risks associated with AI use are identified and managed. This includes technical risks (such as data security and model accuracy), potential reputational risks, ethical risks (like bias and fairness), and legal and compliance risks. Risk assessments should be regularly updated as AI technologies and their uses evolve. 


5. Develop AI Policies, Governance Framework and Communication Plan: 

Guide the development of a governance framework and policies for AI use. This should include ensuring guidelines for data usage, protection and privacy; model development and deployment; risk management and ethical considerations; along with an enterprise-wide communication plan. This framework, policies and communication plan should be regularly reviewed and updated. 

6. Implementation Oversight: 

Oversee the implementation of approved AI projects, ensuring they align with the organization's strategic goals and comply with established policies. The board should also monitor the performance and impacts of AI projects, including both intended and unintended consequences.

7. Engage with Stakeholders: 

Engage with various stakeholders (including employees, customers, shareholders, and regulators) to understand their perspectives and concerns about AI. This can help to build trust and ensure that the organization's use of AI is transparent and accountable. 

8. Monitor and Learn: 

Regularly monitor the organization's AI strategy and its outcomes. This includes learning from both successes and failures, and adapting the strategy as needed. 

9. Advocate Ethical AI Practices: 

Set the tone from the top and promote the use of AI in a way that is ethical, fair, and responsible. This includes considering the social and environmental impacts of AI, and striving to use AI in a way that benefits not just the organization, but society as a whole. 

10. Assess Resource Needs:  

Assess in-house and external resources needed to support implementation of AI applications as part of the organization’s continual refinement of its AI strategy and practices. 

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