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What are the top 5 industries ripe for SLM adoption?

LLMs are so 2023, and SLMs (Small Language Models) are the future of enterprise GenAI. Our Solutions Engineering Lead Tyler Odenthal wrote about how domain-adapted SLMs are being used across diverse sectors ranging from law and healthcare to education and customer service.

What are the top 5 industries ripe for SLM adoption?
SLMs provide the best of all possible worlds: they're secure, specialized, and scalable even for the most highly-regulated industries.

Smart companies are quickly catching on: using Small Language Models (SLMs) is the key to having internal domain-specific AI that can dramatically improve their workflows–from automating tasks to enhancing decision-making processes to improving customer experiences. In this blog, we take a look at just five of the industries that are ripe to be revolutionized by SLMs. 

Customer Service and Support

SLMs can revolutionize customer service by powering chatbots and virtual assistants that provide 24/7 support. They can handle a wide range of customer queries, from simple FAQs to complex troubleshooting–reducing response times and freeing up human agents to focus on more complex issues.

Make your Customer Service team more responsive, efficient, and friendly using SLMs.
  • Personalization at scale: These models can analyze customer data and previous interactions to offer personalized support and recommendations. This means customers can receive advice, product recommendations, and support tailored specifically to their needs and preferences, enhancing the customer experience and potentially boosting sales.
  • Efficiency and cost reduction: By automating routine inquiries and tasks, businesses can significantly reduce operational costs. Human customer service agents are expensive resources, and reallocating them from basic queries to more value-added services can improve the overall efficiency of the customer service department.
  • Language and accessibility: With their natural language understanding and generation capabilities, these models can converse in multiple languages, making customer service more accessible to a global audience. This not only improves the customer experience for non-native English speakers but also expands the potential market base for businesses.
  • Sentiment analysis and crisis management: By analyzing the tone and sentiment of customer inquiries, SLMs can identify unhappy or frustrated customers and either take steps to address their concerns automatically or escalate the issue to human agents. This can help in managing potential crises and improving customer relations.
  • Integration with other services: SLMs can be integrated with other business systems (e.g., CRM, ERP) to pull in relevant customer data or perform actions like updating accounts or processing orders during a conversation. This seamless integration can significantly enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of customer service operations.


SLMs can be used to improve patient care and operational efficiency in healthcare. They aid in analyzing patient records, medical notes, and research papers to extract relevant information, predict outcomes, and personalize patient care. SLMs can also support mental health services by analyzing speech or text inputs from patients to identify patterns or signs of mental health issues.

The adoption of SLMs in medicine is the development that we're most excited about: bringing a new level of efficiency and accuracy to every every aspect of healthcare.
  • Patient interaction and support: SLMs can power virtual health assistants and chatbots to provide 24/7 support to patients. These tools can answer general health questions, provide information on medications and side effects, assist with appointment scheduling, and offer reminders for medication adherence. This level of support enhances patient engagement and can lead to better health outcomes.
  • Clinical decision support: SLMs can assist healthcare professionals by offering up-to-date medical information, suggesting possible diagnoses based on symptoms, and recommending treatment options. By analyzing vast amounts of medical literature and patient data, these models can help clinicians stay informed about the latest research and clinical guidelines, improving the quality of care.
  • Administrative efficiency: SLMs can automate many administrative tasks in healthcare settings, such as transcribing patient encounters, filling out electronic health records (EHRs), and processing insurance claims. This automation can significantly reduce the administrative burden on healthcare providers, allowing them to spend more time on patient care.
  • Training and education: For medical students and professionals, SLMs can provide customized learning experiences, simulate clinical cases for practice, and offer up-to-date medical knowledge. This can enhance medical education and ongoing professional development.

Finance and Banking

In the finance sector, SLMs can be used for analyzing financial documents, market analysis, and customer service. They can process and interpret vast amounts of financial data to detect fraud, make investment decisions, and personalize banking services. Chatbots and virtual assistants can handle transactions, provide financial advice, and answer customer inquiries.

Whether you're a master of finance or just a regular customer of a regular 'ole bank, you can benefit from the efficiency and automation that SMLs bring to the banking sector.
  • Automated customer service: Similar to the broader customer service industry, in finance and banking, chatbots and virtual assistants powered by SLMs can handle a wide range of customer inquiries, from account balances and transaction history to more complex financial advice. This improves accessibility and responsiveness, allowing banks to offer 24/7 support without the need for human staff to be available at all times.
  • Personalized financial advice: SLMs can analyze a customer's financial history, spending habits, and goals to provide personalized advice. This could range from suggesting budgeting tips to recommending investment strategies, all tailored to the individual's financial situation and objectives.
  • Fraud detection and prevention: By analyzing transaction data, communication with customers, and patterns that may indicate fraudulent activity, SLMs can significantly enhance fraud detection mechanisms. They can identify anomalies faster and with greater accuracy than traditional systems, reducing the risk of financial loss and improving customer trust.
  • Risk management and compliance: SLMs can assist in monitoring and analyzing financial markets and internal transactions to assess risk in real-time. They can also ensure compliance with constantly changing regulations by automatically updating systems based on new legislation or policies, thereby minimizing the risk of non-compliance penalties.
  • Document analysis and processing: The finance sector relies heavily on the processing of complex documents such as contracts, reports, and regulatory filings. SLMs can automate the extraction, analysis, and summarization of information from these documents, significantly reducing manual labor and errors while speeding up processing times.
  • Enhanced security measures: Beyond fraud detection, SLMs can improve overall security by analyzing communication patterns to detect phishing attempts or unauthorized access to customer accounts. They can also aid in the development of more secure authentication methods by integrating natural language understanding into biometric verification processes.

SLMs have the potential to significantly impact the legal industry by automating document analysis and research. They can sift through legal documents, contracts, and case files to identify relevant information, predict legal outcomes, and assist in preparing cases. This reduces the time and cost associated with legal research and document review.

LLMs just don't cut it when it comes to the context-specific needs of the legal industry; SLMs bring the finely-tuned domain-specific knowledge needed in law.
  • Legal research: One of the most time-consuming aspects of legal work is the research process, which involves sifting through vast amounts of case law, statutes, and legal precedents. SLMs can streamline this process by quickly identifying relevant cases, statutes, and legal commentary, significantly reducing the time lawyers spend on research. This not only makes the research process more efficient but also allows lawyers to uncover potentially overlooked precedents or arguments.
  • Document drafting and review: SLMs are being used to automate the drafting of legal documents such as contracts, wills, and pleadings. By inputting specific details and requirements, lawyers can generate first-draft documents that adhere to legal standards, which they can then refine as necessary. Similarly, in document review, models can highlight important clauses, potential issues, and even suggest modifications in contracts, saving considerable time and effort in the due diligence process.
  • Legal analytics: With the ability to analyze large datasets, SLMs can provide insights into legal trends, judge ruling patterns, and the likelihood of litigation success. This predictive analytics capability can significantly aid legal strategy, helping firms to better advise their clients on the probability of success and potentially shaping litigation strategies.
  • Compliance and regulatory analysis: For businesses, staying abreast of regulatory changes and ensuring compliance is crucial. SLMs can monitor and analyze regulatory updates across jurisdictions, alerting businesses to relevant changes. This proactive approach can help prevent compliance issues and reduce the risk of penalties.
  • Access to legal assistance: SLMs have the potential to democratize legal assistance by providing basic legal information and guidance to individuals who may not have the means to hire a lawyer. This can be particularly impactful in areas like landlord-tenant disputes, basic contract law, and other common legal issues, helping to bridge the access-to-justice gap.

Education and E-learning

SLMs are enhancing the educational experience by providing personalized learning and assessment tools. They can analyze students' responses and essays, provide feedback, and tailor educational content to individual learning styles. SLMs can also facilitate language learning, reading assistance, and accessibility for students with disabilities. Not only do they provide benefits to students, but teachers can use AI as a tool as well to assist in different teaching strategies, adhere to specific educational standards and reference material dynamically.

SLMs can be a game-changer for educators: freeing up teachers for one-one-one time with students, letting the tech take care of some of their "busy work."
  • Personalized learning: SLMs enable the creation of adaptive learning platforms that can tailor educational content to the individual needs, abilities, and learning pace of each student. By analyzing responses and interaction patterns, these systems can identify areas where a student struggles and adjust the curriculum accordingly, providing additional resources or exercises to address specific challenges.
  • Automated grading and feedback: SLMs can assist in grading assignments and providing feedback on written work. This not only includes objective assessments, like quizzes and multiple-choice tests, but also subjective assessments, such as essays. They can evaluate content for coherence, grammar, and even creativity to some extent, offering constructive feedback that helps students improve their writing skills.
  • Enhanced engagement through gamification: SLMs can be integrated into educational games and simulations, making learning more engaging and interactive. By embedding educational content into game scenarios, students can learn and apply concepts in a fun and stimulating environment, which can improve retention and understanding.
  • Content generation and summarization: Educators can use SLMs to generate educational content, create summaries of complex materials, or devise practice questions and scenarios. This can save significant time and effort and provide students with a wide array of learning materials tailored to the curriculum's needs.
  • Professional Development for Educators: SLMs can provide personalized professional development opportunities for teachers, offering resources, teaching strategies, and feedback tailored to their needs and teaching contexts. This can help educators stay current with educational trends and methodologies, enhancing their teaching effectiveness.

SLMs are the future of enterprise GenAI

Most of us have enough experience with Large Language Models (LLMs) by now to know their many shortcomings when it comes to enterprise data and AI: the astronomical training price tag, the security and privacy concerns, and the lack of context-specific knowledge. The solution to these often-insurmountable obstacles is to instead use SLMs. Arcee is proud to be leading the adoption of SLMs, with our novel three-layer adaptation system and as the pioneer in model merging techniques. To learn more about how your company can start using SLMs, drop us a note and our team will set up a time to chat!