Continuity Contributors

Musings on Artificial Intelligence

Writing a text or preparing a presentation is sometimes a difficult endeavour. Can this become as simple as using an AI-supported writing generator?

While developing a presentation on supply chain continuity recently, my thinking detoured to Artificial Intelligence (AI).  I enjoy developing presentations and training and writing though my process is not at all lineal nor a one-and done, rather it is something like this: multiple drafts that include, deleting, revising, adding, rearranging, spell checking, and wordsmithing. Is this still necessary? Can it be just as simple as using ChatGPT or any of the many AI-supported writing generators to do the work?

Using AI for Business Continuity

From a business continuity practitioner’s perspective, how will AI impact and change how we carry out business continuity, crisis management, disaster recovery, and risk management planning?  For instance, if a business impact analysis survey is sent out for completion, will the subject matter expert fill it out or use some form of AI? When our teams are developing business continuity strategies and procedures, will we turn to AI to carry out the process rather than rely on the knowledge, expertise, and experience of our people? Plans and procedures that almost write themselves? Training, exercises, tests…all developed by AI?             

While AI has seemingly suddenly become omnipresent, it is not new. One of the first articles I read discussing AI in business continuity and disaster recovery was written by Paul Kirvan, Hon FBCI, CISA, “How to use AI for business continuity and disaster recovery planning” (TechTarget 12 April 2019) in which Paul suggests multiple opportunities to include AI throughout both the planning and program development process and after a disaster occurs. To quote a side bar in the article, “While there may be no real substitute-at the time-to human experience and the ability to make decisions in an emergency, it may be valuable to have additional insights from AI-supported systems.”  

AI Brings New Risks and Challenges

AI may well have the potential to be one of the most important technology developments of our lifetime. Some might be uncertain about its value or lack confidence and trust in the impacts it will have. On one hand, it gives us new abilities and the opportunity to imagine and achieve new possibilities. At the same time, a quote from Henry Ford at the time of the Model-T that still rings true today. “The economic and technological triumphs of the past few years have not solved as many problems as we thought they would and, in fact, have brought us new problems we did not foresee.”

As with any other new technology, Artificial Intelligence brings associated risks, challenges and vulnerabilities that must be addressed. Data privacy issues, cyber threats, plagiarism, intellectual property infringement, bias, and malicious use may be just the tip of the iceberg. These are sure to be followed by added related regulatory and legal requirements.

How we choose to use AI

AI is here, and it is not going away. And like computers, the internet, smartphones, and other technologies. isn’t AI yet another new tool? While some of us may accept change more rapidly than others, we all need to become educated about AI. After all, technology is neither good nor bad. The deciding factor will be how we choose to use it. The good thing is that we are still in charge. Human knowledge, logic, and experience are required to determine whether to invest in the latest new technology, know when and how to use it, and be able to manage and maintain it. And, after all, quoting John F. Kennedy, “Man is still the most extraordinary computer of all.” 

NOTE:  Artificial Intelligence was not used in the writing of this article.

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