Hi Laura, thank you for sharing this interesting post. I think you touch on a very relevant topic, which is how some platform might be biased when targeting or hiring new candidates. To some degree I think these platforms can be manipulated by the user to derive more positive results, some users just learn how to play better or are simply better at selling themselves. For this matter, I think some degree of human interaction or judgement is still needed to some degree to rate the personal attitudes or values of the candidate, which at the end will have more impact in their performance through the years.
Hi Elizabeth, very interesting post!
I find the topic of pricing for airlines very interesting and have discussed this matter before on different courses in HBS. I believe AI is a tool that can be leveraged to target certain prices according to some customer segments. However, I think some degree of human judgement or interaction is still needed to determine what amount of value we really want to capture from customers. A lower pricing might create the perception that we are decreasing the quality of our services, or could possibly start price wars with competitors, while higher prices might prevent current non-consumers from trying out our services. I wonder how technology can evolve to incorporate these external factors such as customer perception and reaction from competition to create better predictions.
Hi Jonathan, very interesting post!
I also read about Salesforce and I think you touch on very relevant points, it’s impressive all the tools that are leveraged to make companies have better communication with their customers. Regarding your comment about competition, I believe another relevant player here to consider is Microsoft Dynamics, which also makes use of AI/ML to automate marketing tasks, create mkt metrics, and improve customer service. One relevant player Salesforce should keep on the top of its mind.
Jiwon, thank you for your post and for bringing this discussion to the table. It is very relevant to highlight the biases that these platforms still have and promote in their results. Last week I read a case about racial discrimination on Airbnb and how its algorithm also reinforced stereotypes to promote certain accommodations. I think it is time for users to start penalizing these actions and demand from companies taking actions to deal with this issue.
Hi Amy, I love the topic you chose! Even though the results from the tool were not perfect, I still can see some patterns emerging from all the images (green grass, dogs with toys, cute faces). I think the tool is smart enough to retrieve a series of characteristics that people usually appreciate and look for when they search for certain results.
Hi Julien! I think you shared an important question regarding AI as a potential sustitution for a profession. I particularly think that design is one area where there are vast opportunities to customize according to each person’s preferences, for that reason, I believe it might be difficult to replace in the near term a person’s creativity for the output of a machine, but with the constant progress of technology, it might happen in the long-term.
Hi Nitya, thanks for sharing this! I believe TikTok is one of the most powerful social media platforms nowadays, and it might become the number 1 in the future. It’s impressive everything they have achieved in such a short period of time, allowing the creation of millions of videos by people of all ages, and I think there is still room to exploit more from all the data it collects from users. I would only be concerned about the ethical implications of using this app; the algorithm is created to make the app addictive and promote spending hours in the platform. This could be even more harmful for the younger audiences which are more susceptible to expose themselves in these platforms.
Hi Steph, thanks for sharing this! I was a previous user of Gympass and can speak from my own experience that this is a platform which brings value to customers as it deletes the barriers that new joiners have when they want to attend the most popular fitness centers. Barriers usually include high prices and lack of options, but as you mentioned, Gympass allows users to access its extensive network of gyms. My only concern with this platform is that customer churn could increase and be high with time? Usually, users get excited when they initially join a fitness center, but after a couple of classes, they just stop going. I would be curious about the data that Gympass has regarding the number of months that users kept attending their initial centers, would customer retention be high for the longer term?
Hi Lina, thanks for sharing this! I am very interested in these edtech platforms which create a virtuous cycle by engaging students, professors and institutions; however, even though their mission is strong, I believe their long-term sustainability is questionable (as you mentioned) because every day we see more competitor platforms surging. It is even more difficult to monetize these platforms because founders usually also have the goal to increase access to education and decrease barriers of entry for users to make these platforms more valuable. These platforms are necessary, but I agree that competition in this space is strong and being profitable is even more challenging.
Hi Feifei, thank you for sharing this interesting post!
I believe Starbucks has built an important library full of data and transactions nowadays they can leverage to make better decisions regarding pricing, rewards, distribution, procurement, etc. This data allows them not only to provide better products for the clients but also to optimize their operation. Data has helped them promote growth in sales and an increase in profitability. As data analysis becomes more relevant in years to come, I wonder how Starbucks will transform as a company, will the data scientists become more than half of the total headcount? time will tell…
Thank you for sharing this interesting post, Katy. I think you touch on a very important point that we as future manager should take into account when making strategic decisions, at what point is relying in data too much or even detrimental for the company? I think it is relevant that we are very cautious when we run experiments so that we are able to isolate effects on the end result and that we are able to correctly read/interpret data to make a final decision. We should also consider talking directly with clients and run focus groups so that we get direct feedback from people, in order to match these opinions with the data we retrieve from our experiments
Daniel, thank you for sharing this interesting post!
I can totally see the work Netflix has put in the last few years to collect more data about the user and manage to provide better content recommendations. A few years ago I considered cancelling my subscription because it took me so much time finding something I liked, while nowadays I have so many movies waiting in my library for me to watch during the weekend. Even though you can say Netflix today is wiser in terms of providing a better analysis about the customers’ preferences, Netflix is dealing with new challenges regarding the number of competitors that see a big opportunity in this space to capture more viewers. I wonder if Netflix will be able to maintain profitability and growth in the future years, maybe their secret formula is not a secret anymore and other companies such as Disney Plus will double down on efforts to be the top choice of consumers, only time will tell…