To­wards out­come-based IT ser­vices

Chen­nai-based Veeras In­fotek is rein­vent­ing it­self to pro­vide IT ser­vices that of­fer cus­tomers mea­sur­able ROI

CRN - - COVER STORY - — Sonal De­sai

Chen­nai-based Veeras In­fotek em­barked on its trans­for­ma­tion jour­ney in 2012. “We car­ried out an anal­y­sis of how the tech­nol­ogy land­scape was chang­ing, what ven­dors were bet­ting on, and how cus­tomers’ out­look to­ward IT was chang­ing,” re­calls Su­darsan Ran­ganathan, CEO, Veeras. “We met up with the CXOs of 70 cus­tomer or­ga­ni­za­tions to find out what they ex­pected from us. Cus­tomers are in­creas­ingly de­mand­ing IT on an opex model, and they want IT to drive busi­ness out­comes. Based on these trends we have laid out a multi-year trans­for­ma­tion roadmap.”

Over the past two years, the com­pany has iden­ti­fied new ar­eas of op­er­a­tions, re-or­ga­nized the busi­ness, fo­cused on re-train­ing people, be­gun re-ori­ent­ing people and pro­cesses, and started the process of in­vest­ing in the rel­e­vant in­fra­struc­ture needed to pro­vide new so­lu­tions and ser­vices.

“Us­ing our CRM we plot­ted the in­tel­li­gence about our top 450 cus­tomers—their ex­ist­ing in­fra­struc­ture, growth in­di­ca­tors of the ver­ti­cal they op­er­ate in, their busi­ness out­look, prof­itabil­ity, ex­ist­ing pro­cesses, etc. Based on that and through con­tin­u­ous dis­cus­sions, we be­gan map­ping the best prac­tices in their seg­ments and how we could help these cus­tomers to achieve the best prac­tices us­ing IT with pre­dictable ROI,” says Ran­ganathan.

Fol­low­ing this ex­er­cise, to map the cus­tomers’ businesses, Veeras em­barked on an­other chal­leng­ing task—train­ing the teams. Over the last two years the com­pany has in­vested close to ` 25 lakh for coach­ing and train­ing its em­ploy­ees to en­able them to have dis­cus­sions with cus­tomers not from a tech­ni­cal or prod­uct per­spec­tive, but from a strat­egy and busi­ness out­come per­spec­tive.

The com­pany then iden­ti­fied four core ar­eas to fo­cus on—busi­ness an­a­lyt­ics, con­sol­i­da­tion and vir­tu­al­iza­tion, cloud ser­vices, and se­cu­rity from a view­point of com­pli­ance and gov­er­nance.

Plans are also on to ven­ture into man­aged ser­vices, au­to­ma­tion and or­ches­tra­tion, and to move deeper into an­a­lyt­ics to be­come a pro­fes­sional ser­vices provider. An­other area of fo­cus will be cloud ag­gre­ga­tion and white­la­beled ser­vices on which Veeras plans to build its own IP.

Mean­while, with a firm re­solve to move to XaaS, the com­pany is in the process of im­ple­ment­ing the best ac­count­ing prac­tices. “We have be­gun look­ing at our ac­count­ing poli­cies from the US GAAP per­spec­tive in or­der to gear up for a recurring ser­vices rev­enue model

We met up with CXOs of 70 or­ga­ni­za­tions to find out what they ex­pected from us. Based on their in-depth re­sponse we have laid out a multi-year trans­for­ma­tion roadmap

rather than a billed model,” Ran­ganathan says.

Veeras has started see­ing the ben­e­fits of trans­for­ma­tion. While rev­enue over the last two years has shrunk by 7-10 per­cent, the bot­tom­line has im­proved by six per­cent­age points. The sales cy­cle has re­duced by 50 per­cent, deep-sell­ing and cross-sell­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties have in­creased, and the deal sizes have also in­creased.

“The out­come-based IT strat­egy has en­sured in­creased deep-sell­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties. Last year 40 of our ex­ist­ing cus­tomers gave us busi­ness that con­trib­uted nearly 50 per­cent of our turnover,” in­forms Ran­ganathan.

The an­a­lyt­ics busi­ness, ac­cord­ing to Ran­ganathan, has been an ace for the com­pany. “While busi­ness an­a­lyt­ics is not topline-in­ten­sive, it has been an ace for us in our roadmap to out­come-based IT. We ex­e­cuted 8-10 projects rang­ing from ` 25 lakh to `40 lakh, and all these cus­tomers have seen some ROI in the first year it­self.”

Over the next two years, Veeras plans to move com­pletely to an out­come-based en­gage­ment model with its top 100 cus­tomers. In­forms Ran­ganathan, “We have started ap­proach­ing the top 100 cus­tomers with the XaaS model based on busi­ness out­comes. Our aim is to con­vert at least 60 of them to the new model.”

We have started ap­proach­ing the top 100 cus­tomers with the XaaS model based on busi­ness out­comes. Our aim is to con­vert at least 60 of them to the new model


CEO, Veeras In­fotek

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