Fu­ture of IT in­dus­try: Top Trends for 2019-20

Dataquest - - CONTENTS - (The au­thor is Part­ner, Deloitte India) (Source: https://www2.deloitte.com/in­sights/us/en/fo­cus/ tech-trends.html)

A decade ago, many com­pa­nies could achieve com­pet­i­tive ad­van­tage by be­ing a late fol­lower in adopt­ing dig­i­tal in­no­va­tions and trends that were well on their way to be­ing main­stream. In the dig­i­tal era, there is a pos­si­bil­ity that the late fol­low­ers of­ten tend to miss out most of the up­sides from a dig­i­tal trend that could im­pact their in­dus­try. How can an or­gan­i­sa­tion sense and act upon such trends?

Deloitte has iden­ti­fied 10 trends that are expected to, over the next 18 to 24 months, likely of­fer new av­enues for or­gan­i­sa­tions to pur­sue their strate­gic am­bi­tions. They cover a wide gamut of trends rang­ing from AI-fu­elled or­gan­i­sa­tions, in­tel­li­gent in­ter­faces to dig­i­tal re­al­ity, DevSecOPS and the cy­ber im­per­a­tive, to name a few.

In­dian or­gan­i­sa­tions are seen to have been rel­a­tively slow­erat em­brac­ing these emerg­ing tech­nolo­gies in the past. In the dig­i­tal era, the re­centspate of in­vest­ments in AI, in­tel­li­gent in­ter­face­sand per­son­alised mar­ket­ing by ma­jor In­dian com­pa­nies are an in­di­ca­tor that many of them are ex­plor­ing these emerg­ing tech­nol­ogy use cases to seize the first mover ad­van­tage. Some of the use­cases have so far been in the ar­eas of cus­tomer ser­vice, sales, mar­ket­ing cam­paigns, sup­ply chain, risk mit­i­ga­tion and data se­cu­rity. TheBank­ing & Fi­nan­cial Ser­vices In­sti­tu­tions (BFSI), Re­tail, Man­u­fac­tur­ing, Health­care and Lo­gis­tics sec­tors are lead­ing the way by in­vest­ing in emerg­ing tech­nolo­gies such as Cog­ni­tive/Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence (AI), Aug­mented Re­al­ity (AR)/Vir­tual Re­al­ity (VR), In­ter­net of Things (IoT), Voice User In­ter­face (VUI), Fa­cial Recog­ni­tion etc.

Recog­nis­ing the global trends, in the In­terim Union bud­get 2019-2020, the Gov­ern­ment of India has out­lined a Na­tional AI pro­gram. The fi­nance min­is­ter high­lighted gov­ern­ment’s plan to de­velop skills in ar­eas of AI, AR/VR, Robotics and Big Data.We be­lieve that this is a step in the right di­rec­tion, as this would help in build­ing ca­pac­ity and un­cov­er­ing sig­nif­i­cant growth across sec­tors. In this article, we in­tend to ex­am­ine 3 trends by defin­ing it, pro­vid­ing a global per­spec­tive and then con­nect­ing it to its ap­pli­ca­tions in the India con­text. The three trends are: • AI-Fu­elled Or­gan­i­sa­tions will Get Main­stream: Or­gan­i­sa­tions have em­barked on their jour­ney to trans­form their busi­ness pro­cesses or op­er­a­tions lever­ag­ing AI, thereby el­e­vat­ing AI strat­egy to the cen­ter­piece of their cor­po­rate strat­egy. AI-fu­eled or­gan­i­sa­tions lever­age AI, ma­chine learn­ing and other cog­ni­tive tech­nolo­gies to drive au­to­ma­tion thereby in­creas­ing pro­duc­tiv­ity and im­prov­ing reg­u­la­tory com­pli­ance.

Glob­ally, one of the largest phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal or­gan­i­sa­tion has em­barked on a jour­ney to trans­form into an AI-fu­eled or­gan­i­sa­tion. It has de­ployed AI to speed the in­no­va­tion process, deepen un­der­stand­ing pa­tient’s dis­eases and ac­cel­er­ate the process of drug dis­cov­ery in the or­gan­i­sa­tion. AI/Cog­ni­tive tech­nol­ogy adop­tion has en­abled au­to­ma­tion of 30,000 man-hours each month.

In the In­dian sce­nario, B2C or­gan­i­sa­tions have got off to the races to scale AI in their or­gan­i­sa­tions to gain com­pet­i­tive edge. Few re­tail­ers and tele­com or­gan­i­sa­tions are in­creas­ingly ex­plor­ing ap­pli­ca­tions of ma­chine learn­ing and AI in the ar­eas of as­sort­ment plan­ning, sup­ply chain op­ti­mi­sa­tion, busi­ness fore­cast­ing and in­ven­tory plan­ning. A lo­gis­tic tech­nol­ogy or­gan­i­sa­tion in India is us­ing AI and IoT so­lu­tions to pro­vide ship­ping so­lu­tion provider with cost ef­fec­tive trans­port so­lu­tions through op­ti­mum ca­pac­ity util­i­sa­tion and fleet man­age­ment. A fi­nan­cial ser­vices firm is us­ing an AI so­lu­tion to reengi­neer the cheque pro­cess­ing life­cy­cle, where the so­lu­tion scans the hard copies of cheques and cross matches the sig­na­ture on the cheque with the cus­tomer sig­na­ture in the data­base and pro­cesses the trans­ac­tion. This so­lu­tion has led to a sig­nif­i­cant re­duc­tion in cheque pro­cess­ing time and helped the or­gan­i­sa­tion in pre­vent­ing cheque frauds.

THE UR­GENCY TO FO­CUS ON IM­ME­DI­ATE VALUE RE­AL­I­SA­TION, LIM­ITS THE OPEN­NESS TO EX­PER­I­MENT WITH CUT­TING EDGE TECH­NOL­OGY SINCE FAIL­URE IS NOT AN OP­TION. WHILE THIS TREND IS CHANG­ING, WE CAN DO A LOT MORE TO ADOPT THESE TECH­NOLO­GIES BY TRANS­FORM­ING OUR MIND­SET — Rakesh Barik, Part­ner, Deloitte India

• In­tel­li­gent In­ter­faces to El­e­vate the Hu­man Ex­pe­ri­ence: Glob­ally or­gan­i­sa­tions are in­vest­ing in in­tel­li­gent in­ter­faces that are trans­form­ing the way cus­tomers in­ter­act with their brands.These in­ter­faces use a host of tech­nolo­gies, in­clud­ing com­puter vi­sion, AR/VR,IoT, con­tex­tual aware­ness, to cap­ture cus­tomer data and pre­dict a need based on their sub­con­scious be­hav­ior.

Glob­ally or­gan­i­sa­tions are us­ing sen­sors, cam­era and com­puter vi­sion for fa­cial recog­ni­tion of their cus­tomers to pro­vide tar­geted pro­mo­tions. Voice User In­ter­faces (VUI) are cur­rently pro­lif­er­at­ing in the ware­house op­er­a­tions, cus­tomer ser­vice, main­te­nance and field op­er­a­tions where tech­ni­cians could in­ter­act with the sys­tem or staff to re­solve tech­ni­cal is­sues.

In India, a large hos­pi­tal­ity or­gan­i­sa­tion has de­ployed VUI based tech­nolo­gies in their cus­tomer sup­port op­er­a­tions to im­prove cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence. A lead­ing on­line prop­erty mar­ket­place in India has built an ex­pe­ri­ence cen­ter for its prop­erty buy­ers where a home­buyer can get an im­mer­sive ex­pe­ri­ence and see an aerial view of the prop­erty. • From Dig­i­tal Mar­ket­ing to Mar­ket­ing Dig­i­tally: Tra­di­tional dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing chan­nels such as web­sites, so­cial media, mo­bile plat­forms and Search En­gine Op­ti­mi­sa­tion (SEOs) are fast be­com­ing must haves rather than a dif­fer­en­tia­tor for or­gan­i­sa­tions. As the mar­ket­ing tech­nol­ogy evolves, or­gan­i­sa­tions are find­ing new tools to de­liver un­prece­dented lev­els of per­son­alised pro­mo­tions/ser­vices to the cus­tomers. This emerg­ing trend rep­re­sents a tec­tonic shift in the seller’s mar­ket­ing strat­egy as the brands are fo­cus­ing more on cus­tomis­ing their ser­vices/of­fer­ings based on cus­tomer needs rather than fo­cus­ing on bend­ing con­sumer’s will.

Glob­ally, one of the largest foods and bev­er­ages or­gan­i­sa­tion is us­ing de­mo­graphic, drive pref­er­ences and con­sump­tion pat­tern data to pre­dict con­sumer’s diet pref­er­ences. Lever­ag­ing this pref­er­ence data, the brand of­fered per­son­alised pro­mo­tions to the con­sumers. A cus­tomer data plat­form is the ba­sic build­ing block to achieve these out­comes.

An In­dian e-com­merce or­gan­i­sa­tion has used mar­ket­ing tech­nol­ogy to un­der­stand their cus­tomers’ jour­neys. Data el­e­ments such as brows­ing be­hav­ior, pur­chase his­tory and de­mo­graph­ics are be­ing used to pro­vide per­son­alised pro­mo­tions. This has led to an in­crease in sales rev­enue. Sim­i­lar model has been adopted in other sec­tors such as ed­u­ca­tion and e-learn­ing to el­e­vate cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence. Chal­lenges on the Hori­zon While there are nu­mer­ous ar­eas for or­gan­i­sa­tions to work upon, we have en­cap­su­lated two chal­lenges.

One of the is­sues is the un­avail­abil­ity of mi­cro level data around credit, con­sump­tion pat­terns. This adds an ex­tra di­men­sion of com­pli­ca­tions when we in­clude the data qual­ity. A sig­nif­i­cant num­ber of In­dian busi­nesses are at the ini­tial stages of their jour­ney to digi­tise their core busi­ness pro­cesses and hence there is a short­age of data. Even if the data is avail­able, the qual­ity of the data leaves much to be de­sired.

In con­clu­sion, these tech­nol­ogy trends present im­mense op­por­tu­ni­ties to those or­gan­i­sa­tions who have the right dig­i­tal mind­set to em­brace them and work with the broader ecosys­tems of tech­nol­ogy prod­uct com­pa­nies and other spe­cial­ists to solve prob­lems at scale.

—Rakesh Barik Part­ner, Deloitte India

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