Hype or Reality: The ROI of Machine Learning


Paul Derstine

Date Published:
July 20, 2018

The hype around “the thinking sciences” — Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Data Science — is enormous, so it’s tempting to be skeptical of the return on investment (ROI) claimed. Still, most of the results are real. The capabilities of Data Science and Machine Learning, where models are inductively built from real history, have been growing steadily.

Organizations may suspect there is value in their data assets but not be sure how to extract it, what it will cost, or most importantly, if their ROI in analytics will be worthwhile. Or they may not see data as a strategic asset that improves decision-making — especially if a previous analytics attempt required too much work to prepare the data, or got left on the shelf unused after it concluded successfully. Such misfires would leave everyone involved feeling the reward was not worth the effort.

Each business is unique and there are many levels of analytics. The real power of data science is not harnessed with a “one-size-fits-all” approach, but thrives when business leaders engage technology experts who can build successful analytics solutions, as well as help them develop a comprehensive analytics culture that touches every aspect of their organization. Analytic solutions can transform an organization by, for example, streamlining workflows, optimizing maintenance schedules, or eliminating fraud; in every case, they enhance the bottom line, and provide a sustained competitive advantage.

Too often organizations hold off applying analytics while they wrangle more, better, or cleaner data. In our experience it is always best to work with the data assets you have now and allow those early projects to inform your subsequent data collection efforts. By starting small and quickly generating value you build momentum and improve stakeholder buy-in.

To help organizational leadership understand the extraordinary ROI that is achieved using Machine Learning techniques we have scheduled a live webinar hosted by Dr. John Elder. With more than two decades of experience applying and teaching advanced analytics to solve business problems, Dr. Elder will share lessons learned and best practices, while making the key points understandable and accessible.

The webinar will reveal examples of the gains that can be achieved using five of Elder Research’s most interesting fielded solutions from the last two decades, from the diverse worlds of investment timing, credit scoring, drug discovery, medical diagnosis, and gas exploration.

Attendees will learn:

  • The power of the “thinking sciences” and what make them different from traditional techniques
  • Examples of fielded solutions in several industries, and the enormous ROI that they achieved
  • Some key human factors that can make the difference between shelf-ware and full implementation

At the strategic level, analytics allows organizations to unlock value from their data to gain new insights, accomplish business objectives, and improve profits.

Want to learn more?

Check out our webinar: The High ROI of Machine Learning for Innovative Organizations.
Watch the Webinar