The euphoria over the ChatGPT virtual assistant has not yet passed, and there is already great expectation about the applications of the new version, ChatGPT-4, which arrived at the end of March and can be accessed with a subscription to ChatGPT Plus (US$20) or through its API, a tool especially valued by companies since it allows them to integrate it into their own applications (they must pay according to its use, although they must first sign up on a waiting list).
ChatGPT, the OpenIA-owned chatbot, suddenly became famous in November 2022 for its ability to answer all kinds of questions, respond to follow-up queries, and even challenge incorrect user assumptions. Also, due to more complex uses than answering questions, such as doing entire tasks (writing an essay on a particular topic, for example) or writing code in one of the main programming languages.
That version, built on an OpenIA language model, then in its 3.5 edition, surpassed one million users just a few days after its launch.
ChatGPT enthusiasts include some Latin American startups that are incorporating its features into their business models.
Online course startup Platzi has been experimenting with ChatGPT-4 for weeks, even before its mass launch, says co-founder Christian Van Der Henst, who and his team have implemented artificial intelligence (AI) in several features.
The Guatemalan entrepreneur told Contxto that they got early access due to their relationship with OpenAI after Platzi participated in an entrepreneurship course given by Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI and former president of the startup accelerator Y Combinator.
Van Der Henst discussed the differences between ChatGPT and ChatGPT-4 and mentioned that in the previous version, users were more limited to working with information from the past (it was trained with data from up to 2021), while in the new one, there is more current information.
In addition, the Platzi co-founder says ChatGPT-4 is more thoughtful in responding to questions. “When you’re still developing the conversation, and there’s not as much context, the warnings are clearer,” Van Der Henst said.
“When you tell him, ‘Hey, help me cure my little dog.’ It tells you, ‘For ethics, I can give you information and content, but be careful with this; look for a medical professional,'” he exemplified.
Felipe Cuadra, co-founder and Chief Experience Officer (CXO) of Chilean human resources software startup Rankmi, believes that “the ChatGPT-4 version is around 100 times better trained, with 100 times more interactions, so it is much more powerful, the answers are more accurate, and it has more feedback”.
Rankmi has also been optimizing its talent management solutions with the help of ChatGPT for a few months now. “We are now in the queue for version 4,” Cuadra said, referring to the API.
This shows that more and more startups are implementing AI into their business models.
“2023 is going to be the year of AI globally,” argues Diego Olcese, CEO of Crehana, an online course startup also using ChatGPT and other AI tools to create courses entirely from scratch.
ChatGPT and its applications in startups
Since 2023 kicked off, some startups have rushed to implement ChatGPT in their business models to gain efficiencies.
Rankmi, which has clients in Mexico, Chile, and Peru, is using ChatGPT for three specific purposes in its solutions for human resources departments. They have applied it in performance evaluations, in interpreting large amounts of data from climate surveys, and finally, in developing a virtual assistant that allows employees to improve their work.
Cuadra explained that ChatGPT is seven to eight times more efficient than generating content from scratch. “If it takes you an hour to write 500 words with ChatGPT, it can take you five minutes with a similar level of quality.”
In the field of people management, Cuadra explains that, generally, experienced leaders need about 15 to 20 minutes to prepare feedback to a collaborator about their performance and then about an hour to be able to deploy it, but with ChatGPT, it is possible to save about half of that time.
For example, with ChatGPT, Rankmi allows company leaders to assess the performance and opportunity areas of a young worker who has not yet discovered his or her talents. After cross-referencing their target metrics, a detailed action plan is automatically deployed to improve the areas where their performance still needs to improve at 100%.
Performing this activity usually takes a couple of hours, but with the help of ChatGPT, it can take only 30 minutes, Cuadra said.
Rankmi also trains the ChatGPT algorithm to motivate young employees who have yet to discover their talents within the organization and generate an action plan to help them improve.
Cuadra believes that with this implementation, companies can generate competitive advantages. The clients most interested in this are in industries such as banking, retail, and telecommunications, as he assures that talent traditionally has a greater impact on results in these industries.
“This is revolutionary because it means that I no longer have to train the leaders, but I can give them tools that allow them to make up for that lack of experience in a very massive and customized way,” Cuadra said.
During the first quarter of 2023 at Platzi, several actions have also been implemented with the help of ChatGPT.
Van Der Henst said that in January, they held an internal hackathon to get Platzi employees to start using ChatGPT and think about how to apply it in the company.
Platzi had long wanted to implement some features made possible by ChatGPT, such as captioning more courses, doing transcripts, or creating study flashcards.
Van Der Henst said they also produced a course made entirely with AI tools, not only from ChatGPT but also from Midjourney, the AI platform with which the fake photographs of Pope Francis in unusual attire were created (OpenAI has a similar tool, DALL-E).
Platzi is also working on creating an assistant which asks questions based on the courses students take, which is in the experimental stage. “Imagine a little Siri that answers things for you based on your courses,” Van Der Henst said.
The entrepreneur explained that it is natural to do these types of projects and experiments given his business model, closely related to teaching technology.
For Van Der Henst it is still too early to quantitatively measure ChatGPT’s impact on Platzi. “Although it is speeding up processes for us and unlocking things,” he said.
The entrepreneur said AI will not eliminate jobs at Platzi but boost its activities. “I will do much more with fewer people, but jobs will not be reduced, but I will increase the quality of my services; technology will give us superpowers,” he said.
He gave examples: it is no longer necessary to involve a team of 25 people to produce study cards. It used to be expensive to subtitle their courses, but with ChatGPT it is more cost effective. Especially with version 4, where APIs made the cost of a query cheaper.
Diego Olcese, CEO of Crehana, also similarly applies ChatGPT. In February, he unveiled that his team created a course entirely with AI.
“We haven’t interacted at all, just a couple of corrections,” said the Peruvian entrepreneur regarding the process of creating it.
Olcese said that “there is a gigantic impact.” The ten-minute course he created with ChatGPT was done in five hours, from building the script to putting it on the platform, something which usually takes two to four weeks.
In addition, Olcese explained that the teachers, who are avatars, have no imperfections when reading the script and have no performance errors, although it is necessary to work on the avatar’s performance process in front of the student.
Olcese believes that ChatGPT is a “super powerful” tool and that by the end of the year, he intends that Crehana’s clients can create their own courses with its advice.
Crehana will not only continue to implement AI with its clients but also to be more productive as a team. Its CEO explained that in order to be faster and more effective, it implements ChatGPT in the construction of advertising material and copywriting.
ChatGPT stats indicate that it has 175 billion parameters and receives 10 million queries daily. The virtual assistant was trained on text information and about 570 GB of data sets, including web pages, books, and other sources.
OpenAI says they have spent six months making ChatGPT-4 more secure and aligned. The new version is 82% less likely to respond to requests for disallowed content and 40% more likely to produce objective responses than the previous version.
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