How Ford Motor Company (F) Solved The Complex Problem Of Scheduling With Artificial Intelligence (AI)?


Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) has tapped into artificial intelligence (AI) to help with complex scheduling. While AI has many people worried,  AI can help with decision making without itself taking over the process.

There was a time when Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) had a scheduling problem that impacted workers and took time away from people. According to Leonard Kinnaird-Heether, who built Ford’s scheduling AI, there was a way to solve the scheduling problem through an AI application. Issues of scheduling at workplaces, he said, are at the core function of AI and can be easy to solve by developing automated tools. That was what Ford did and the company gave back time to its employees to be more productive.

Ford redeems time with AI

Back in mid-2000s, Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) relied heavily on tools supplied by Frontline Systems that worked with Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s Excel. Things worked well when the company had only hand a handful of scheduling issues to deal with under its Ford College Graduate Program. However, in 2011, when Ford had more than 10,000 workforces scheduling to process, the Excel tool could not help because the tool could only deal with about 8,000 schedules.

With more people joining the Ford College Graduate Program, scheduling become complex and managers could hardly deal with the challenge. That was when Kinnaird-Heether noticed the nightmare and stepped in to help. As a computer science specialist, Kinnaird-Heether proposed using AI to solve the scheduling problem. He went ahead and developed a tool.

Unfounded fears over AI

The adoption of the AI scheduling tool helped Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) to solve one of its serious headaches. However, according to Kinnaird-Heether, it was not easy to get people to agree to the adoption of AI for scheduling because of the fear of loss of human oversight in the job. Kinnaird-Heether said that was the toughest part of his work, but things did work out eventually.

Neha Gupta

Neha Gupta has been in the financial space for over six years now. Gupta earned her MBA degree from Symbiosis Centre of Distance Learning in 2009 and her passion for finance led her to pursue Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) course. She has successfully completed Level II of her CFA. She is a veteran in article writing, which is depicted in her numerous pieces published on SeekingAlpha, Nextiphonenews, InsiderMonkey, MarketWatch, and Techinsider. Her crisp and eloquent writing finds its best place in Researchcows, where emphasis is given on developing rich content for various websites, products, business plans, trainings, and book writing.

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