2019

Geospatial data analytics: The way forward in analytics

Data analytics is one of the hottest trends in enterprises today. Companies are dependent on data analytics for a wide array of services and features which help the company achieve its goals faster and deliver utility to its customer in a timely manner. When conventional data analytics is powered with location and geospatial, it holistically takes care of the customer requirements. Geospatial technologies enhance the utility, functionality as well as the relevance of data analytics.

“Data Analytics provides a 360o view of customer segments and their needs. Organizations can foresee customer demands through predictive models and drive supply chains more effectively”, says Nishikant Nigam, EVP and Chief Delivery Officer, CSS Corp.

GIS tools have the unique ability to slice and dice terabytes of data in real time to derive decisive insights into understanding spatial trends and associations, adds Nigam.

There is a wide prospect of an increase in the use of spatial technologies. Geospatial data analytics is driving businesses and fostering innovation across different verticals. It also enriches the user by offering him a new perspective of data interaction by enabling users to recognize new patterns and connections, which can’t be showcased in traditional methods using graphs.

“Geospatial technologies enable a 3D view of business data through a map, the required spatial information can then be identified through latitude and longitudinal coordinates to extract demographic and customer information. This collaboration of tabulated data and locational data gives precise context by analyzing heterogeneous information available across complex system environments”, believes Nigam.

Faster decision-making

The use of geospatial in data analytics infuses fresh dynamism and assists companies and customers, but it also has an important application in streamlining decision-making. The first prerequisite for good decision-making is complete knowledge and awareness of data. Convergence of GIS and data analytics merges flexibility and foresight which is crucial for any company looking at exploring new markets and focusing on customer satisfaction. Location is a vital component of geospatial which unravels the complexities and provides new insights about current and emerging trends.

Data analytics has been increasingly leveraged to discover new markets, develop customer insights, create better customer experiences, streamline processes, and drive innovation. It has also become indispensable and provides businesses flexibility and foresight while charting future roadmaps, opines Nigam.

Nigam also concurs with the immense benefits that convergence of GIS and data analytics yield. He adds, “This convergence is of true value since it helps in locating valuable customers, predict purchasing decisions and patterns, mapping similar customers, evaluating success and failures of marketing campaigns, and the impact of weather on customer footfalls. When data insights are associated with location data, it can generate actionable insights, which can further be visualized to infer what and where to act on, while optimizing leadership efforts to take more informed decisions. “

 

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How advanced analytics-driven PLM can help you achieve more business value

Incorporating advanced analytics can help stakeholders to adapt new business opportunities and also reap many benefits from it.

What do P&G, Jaguar, Land Rover, Unilever, Johnson & Johnson, or Rolls Royce have in common? Yes, they are all leading product companies of the world. But apart from that, they all vouch for the transformative power of having a cutting-edge product lifecycle management (PLM) approach in place to facilitate top-notch customer experience, boosts R&D, manufactures new goods, and fuels efficiency.

According to Forrester, by 2020, 85 percent of customers expect companies to automatically personalize deliverables and proactively take care of its needs. So, PLM is primarily about ensuring differentiated, superior customer experience by driving innovation, achieving faster time-to-market, delivering quality, while keeping costs in line.  While IoT (Internet of Things), AI, ML, NLP and other such innovative technologies offer real-time information, challenges (detecting failures, predicting loss, calculating correlations and prioritizing solutions with cost limits) remain.

Generate more value from data and enable insightful decision making

While organizations worry about the cost of new products and ROI, customers care about the product’s price/value ratio and quality. Advanced analytics can help both the stakeholders to adapt to new business opportunities. Incorporating advanced analytics into the process can reap many benefits: companies can fine-tune their market forecasts, predict failures and estimate downtime, creating more value for the business and their customers.

Road-blocks in product lifecycle management    

Executives managing the product development process must think through some critical decision-making points when strategizing for the digital future. A few of them are:

  • How to overcome constant technological disruptions to deliver customer experience that excels?
  • Which internal/external factors will influence the product’s performance?
  • How to leverage the available skill sets, technology and knowledge to drive organizational efficiencies through smarter operations?

Many companies still lack the arsenal of digital tools required for smooth functioning and must rely on guesswork or trial and error.

How does analytics come to the rescue?

Historically, organizations have long relied on traditional product development methodologies such as FMEA (failure mode and effect analysis), DOE (design of experiment), mean time between failure analysis and value stream analysis.
With ever-increasing volume of data coming in today, conventional technologies fall short and disruptions are widespread. But innovative companies know that data-driven insights play a role across all functions of the product lifecycle and strategize accordingly to maximize the value derived from the investment.

For example, Netflix’s sustained success comes as no surprise for companies that understand the value of leveraging advanced analytics, machine learning and algorithms to drive powerful customer conversations. Netflix has something that is more valuable than money: Contextual Information. Using this data, their recommendation algorithm suggests the most relevant content to its users based on their preferences. The resulting customer experience is exceptional.

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CSS Corp Wins the Incite Customer Service Awards 2019

CSS Corp, a new age IT services and technology support company announced today that they have won the “Solution Provider of the Year: People’s Choice” award at the recently concluded Incite Customer Service Awards 2019 event. The award ceremony was part of The Customer Service Summit West 2019 event in San Diego, organised by the Incite group. CSS Corp’s Cognitive Customer Experience (CX) portfolio was chosen as the best solution of the year from amongst other leading IT players.

CSS Corp’s Cognitive Customer Experience (CX) portfolio has been built to help brands drive superior customer lifecycle management powered by artificial intelligence and advanced analytics capabilities. The portfolio integrates technologies like chatbots, automation, consumer insights, knowledge management, Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and mobile applications through an outcome-based service model to deliver enhanced customer experiences. In a business outcome context, it also enables new revenue opportunities for organizations by leveraging advanced applied analytics to map a customer’s journey, personalize interactions and enable purchase decisions.

Speaking about the win, Manish Tandon, Chief Executive Officer, CSS Corp said, “We are delighted to be recognized by the Incite group for our unique service model that delivers stellar customer experiences. It is a testimony to our underlying philosophy that customers are at the centre of the business ecosystem. Through our cognitive CX portfolio, we are committed to offer disruptive customer service solutions that enhance engagement and exceed expectations. We will continue to invest in developing solutions that enable our customers to dynamically react to the ever-changing customer intent and proactively resolve their challenges.”

The Incite Customer Service Awards unite leading minds at the forefront of customer service and aim to shine a spotlight on the achievements of those who are truly exceeding customer expectations. This year, companies of all sizes from around the world and across industries were part of the evaluation. Entries for each category were evaluated by a panel of judges who shortlisted 8 finalists based on relevant criteria. The People’s Choice Awards results were based upon an evaluation of maximum votes garnered from people who voted from the shortlisted finalists.

CSS Corp Recognized as Leader in the Digital Workplace by ISG

Bangalore, Karnataka, India: CSS Corp, a new-age IT services and technology support company, today announced that it has been recognized as a market leader in the digital workplace by Information Services Group (ISG), a leading global technology research and advisory firm.

According to the 2019 ISG Provider Lens™ Digital Workplace of the Future Report for the U.S., CSS Corp, based out of Milpitas, California, United States was among the leading providers in the Digital Workplace of the Future Managed Services – Mobility Support category.

“Leaders in our digital workplace report are helping companies make their employees’ lives easier by allowing them to use the technologies of their choice,” said Jan Erik Aase, director and global leader, ISG Provider Lens Research. “Digital workplace leaders are helping employees of their clients engage in more satisfying and efficient ways with their companies’ data and applications.”

The ISG report noted that, “CSS Corp has developed smart workplace support services based on cognitive automation and offers flexible usage options to midmarket clients.” Earlier this year, CSS Corp was featured in the Top 25 Digital Transformation case studies in 2019 by ISG.

Manish Tandon, Chief Executive Officer, CSS Corp, said, “In this age of hyper-connectivity and heightened customer expectations, global organizations are looking to create workplace environments that enable their employees to be most productive. In this context, we have been working with leading organizations to help them set up workplaces of the future. Our digital workplace solutions, powered by mobility and augmented reality technologies, coupled with best-in-class services, is an ideal option for organizations who are looking to transform their work environments. We are glad to be recognized as leaders by ISG for our digital workplace services.”

The 2019 ISG Provider Lens™ Digital Workplace of the Future Report for the U.S. evaluates the capabilities of 28 providers across four quadrants: Digital Workplace Consulting Services, Managed Services – Workplace Support, Managed Services – Mobility Support and Managed Services – Mobility Support for the Midmarket.

The ISG Provider Lens Quadrant report series draws insights on service provider capabilities from focused surveys, briefings, interviews with providers, input from ISG advisors, ISG benchmarking data, and data drawn from the ISG Contracts Knowledgebase™ and ISG Engagement Database™. The series is a complement to the ISG Provider Lens Archetype reports, which offer a first-of-its-kind evaluation of providers from the perspective of specific buyer types.

About ISG

ISG (Information Services Group) (Nasdaq: III) is a leading global technology research and advisory firm. A trusted business partner to more than 700 clients, including more than 70 of the top 100 enterprises in the world, ISG is committed to helping corporations, public sector organizations, and service and technology providers achieve operational excellence and faster growth. The firm specializes in digital transformation services, including automation, cloud and data analytics; sourcing advisory; managed governance and risk services; network carrier services; strategy and operations design; change management; market intelligence and technology research and analysis. Founded in 2006, and based in Stamford, Conn., ISG employs more than 1,300 digital-ready professionals operating in more than 20 countries-a global team known for its innovative thinking, market influence, deep industry and technology expertise, and world-class research and analytical capabilities based on the industry’s most comprehensive marketplace data

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Fast-learning digital assistants are finding their voice in India

N Chandrababu Naidu is currently in his fourteenth year as Andhra Pradesh’s chief minister. For the first 13 years, which were spread across two stints, he resorted to the time-consuming approach of seeking a report from bureaucrats every time he wanted updates about a particular district or the status of a welfare scheme. But since last February, he has been simply asking Alexa, Amazon’s digital voice assistant, to spell out the statistics.

Beyond the chief minister’s office, voice assistants are becoming ubiquitous in India across smartphones and connected homes. The likes of Alexa and its peers such as Google Assistant, Apple’s Siri, Samsung’s Bixby and Microsoft’s Cortana are accomplishing a wide variety of tasks such as hailing a cab, calling a friend, sending a message, and playing songs.

At enterprises, voice-enabled bots are handling core functions in areas such as enterprise resource planning, human resource management and to support business intelligence or run banking operations. Typically, these functions include generating proactive reports, citing anomalies and boosting efficiency of employees.

The vast majority of technology majors have been running R&D programmes for voice computing and are launching commercial products as well.

“Voice computing went mainstream in 2018, gaining more prominence among consumers and enterprises,” said Vivian Gomes, vice president and head of marketing & inside sales at CSS Corp.

In fact, at one million utterances a week, more people summon Alexa in India than anywhere else in the world. And at least one user says “I love you, Alexa” every minute, according to Puneesh Kumar, country manager for Alexa experiences and devices at Amazon India.

Technological advances

The current boom has come on the back of two decades of experimentation by the industry, according to Puneet Gupta, chief technology officer of digital product engineering services company GlobalLogic’s India division.

“Voice assistants can be fundamentally broken down into two key technology challenges. One, converting voice to text and two, interpreting the text for the intent,” he said.

 

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It Takes Both AI And Human Connection To Reach Superior Customer Service

With the rapid explosion of artificial intelligence-powered solutions changing the customer service landscape, much has been said about technology and its role in improving the customer experience. It’s also changing the nature of the call center — and, by extension, the jobs of over 2.7 million Americans employed as customer service representatives.

My company, CSS Corp, uses proprietary customer experience solutions designed around an artificial intelligence (AI) core. While we believe strongly in our technology to meet the needs of our clients’ customers, reaching a level of superior customer service requires a strong commitment from the company and its people. A company must complement AI’s abilities with high-value human connections, consistent and accurate training, and personalized interactions that avoid invading customers’ privacy.

The Disappearance Of The ‘Easy Calls’

According to the “2018 State of Chatbots Report,” 69% of consumers prefer chatbots for “quick answers to simple questions.” Given that advanced AI-driven chatbots can realistically deflect between many common customer service inquiries, I believe it’s a customer preference that makes sense to fulfill. Chatbots are handling many simple and routine inquiries that once made up the majority of call center volume.

 That doesn’t mean that customer service jobs are going to be eliminated; it does, however, mean the expectations of human interactions are now elevated. Customer preference for chatbots doesn’t extend to more complex or nonstandard issues. In one study, 41% of U.S. respondents said they feel chatbots’ answers aren’t as detailed, and 37% feel that chatbots are less helpful.

The increase in chatbot usage does mean that agents can spend more time operating in high-value conversations, where the stakes are higher — attending to customers with potentially frustrating issues or unusual requests. Often, those interactions are the ones with the most potential to make or break customer loyalty. Companies can maximize these opportunities by making sure their agents are not only well-trained but have performance measures and incentives that encourage them to put customer needs over maximum efficiency.

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Driving superior customer experiences by transforming enterprise support

The B2B technical support sector has undergone a massive transformation in terms of services, knowledge, empowerment, and challenges. The increased adoption of new technologies like SDN, wireless networks, unified communications, and cloud-based networks have made providing support to huge numbers of connected devices a highly complex and surgical engagement. As a result, most technology vendors wait for years to see a return on their investment.

The truth is that while the technology on offer has evolved, the support side of things hasn’t quite kept up. Issues and challenges across the support ecosystem loom large over most technology enterprises, reducing their efficiency and limiting their ability to perform well.

What’s changed, and what hasn’t?

As technology has evolved, the balance of power has shifted away from technology vendors and towards the customer. A decade ago, enterprise technology deals often involved large components that required physical installation and commissioning by a technology vendor. While vendors made their money upfront and relatively risk-free, customers had to wait for their returns and were often forced to accept bad deals.

But with the advent of subscription-based technology services, the tide has turned in favor of the customer. Rather than paying for everything upfront, subscription-based services allow customers to spread costs out over time, which substantially limits their level of risk. Meanwhile, vendors are being forced to take on more risk than ever before, and often wait years to make good on their investments.

Naturally, under this business model, vendors are heavily incentivized to keep their customers happy across the entire support lifecycle. If they can achieve this reliably, vendors can work their way into a position where they are receiving consistent revenue and don’t need to constantly spend on acquiring new customers.

Customer experience should not be viewed in isolation

Customer experience is the next biggest differentiator. For vendors, this is the real deal.

Enterprise support is only becoming more complex, with a growing number of devices needing support on a daily basis. In order to ensure a high level of customer experience, vendors must provide outstanding support across the entire lifecycle of purchase, deployment, and post-sales support, as well as ongoing relationship management

From a technology vendor perspective, there are various functions that drive this customer experience – specifically, customer care, tech support, professional services, customer success, sales operations, and education and training. The only organization that cuts across all these functions is the support organization as they are the front face of support and are always in touch with customers. This gives the support function the unique advantage of being stewards to drive CX across all interaction points radically transforming how support is thought, advocated, nurtured and delivered.

To ensure good CX, enterprises should unify all of the modular blocks that power CX using a robust digital framework. By investing in a digital framework, enterprises can transform CX operations, and obtain insights and intelligence that will help them drive operational efficiencies and enhance the customer experience.

Future-proofing employees to overcome challenges

“Experience is a good university, but the fee is high,” goes the popular adage. However, when it’s about learning at the speed of change, not all employers can afford the time, resources, and costs of learning through experiences alone. Thus, for swift learning on the job, employers are turning toward various skilling programs and across L&D departments, conversations about the need for crafting programs to advance employees across agile project turfs are galore. The benefits are two-fold; first, today’s futuristic employers want to proactively gear up their teams for upcoming projects and clients’ changing requirements. Second, it paves a stable path for careerists wishing to move ahead.

Technology at the fore

Employee skilling has many faces: reskilling, upskilling, e-learning, short modules, and so forth and the approach of an organization varies when it comes to how they deliver these programs. However, the use of latest tools and technologies for providing learning should be at the convenience of employees and never at the cost of ongoing projects. When asked about their learning strategies, the L&D head of a new age services firm quipped, “How does one eat an elephant? Bite by bite. Long-term courses do have their place, but this is specifically about targeted micro-modules or ‘bites’ that support employees on specific project requirements.” So therein lies the answer; from e-learning solutions, video streaming services, and cloud platforms to online certifications and digital skilling frameworks for massive open online courses (MOOCs), technology is the common denominator that pushes the learning continuum.

The current scenario

Today’s new-age technologies whet the appetite of freshly-minted professionals. They’re eager beavers who are attuned with the market and are acutely aware of the need to differentiate themselves in a competitive environment. The landscape is teeming with talented job applicants who have a range of options to choose from, and they’re mindful of the area they want to specialize in. In a sense, their exposure to new technologies and career options is at an all-time high when compared with candidates a decade ago.

The existing gaps

The advent of innovative learning initiatives to train the existing workforce in niche technologies and domains is a surefooted path to building a competent workforce. However, on the one hand, a talented pool of applicants is in the waiting; on the other hand, a lacuna persists between the market’s demands and their corresponding skill requirements from job applicants. This mismatch is hurting companies and prospective job applicants alike.

To bridge this gap, technology firms are offering training programs in specific skills by partnering with government institutions, trade bodies, not-for-profit societies, and educational service providers. Take, for example, NASSCOM, National Skill Development Corporation, ICT Academy, and others who partner with top technology firms to prepare a skill-based curriculum. This kind of a partnership model serves the needs of a rapidly changing industry by ensuring that students are “in the know” when it comes to new-age technologies (AI, ML, Big Data, Analytics, and the like). Not just technical skills but also soft skills, communication, and writing skills. Therefore, these initiatives ensure that applicants are career-ready even before they start marketing their skills to employers — a win-win situation for all.

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Hottest skills for the tech sector in 2019

UX designers, extreme programmers, big data engineers, AI and natural language processing experts and data scientists will be in-demand in 2019, reveal recruiters in India. 

While there’s an array of technical skills needed for today’s competitive job market, the IT job space itself is undergoing massive changes.

The incessant need to produce innovative solutions and services puts the onus on prospective job seekers to keep themselves well versed with the hottest skills in IT. Here we take a deep dive into skills recruiters in India are scouting for in 2019.

Keeping up with the evolving workplace

Technology is changing so fast that the ability to keep up with the pace and adapt in real time is becoming a core survival skill for all employees. The speed of innovation is also cultivating a proactive mindset in the workforce.

Enterprises can only keep up with the when employees take ownership, stay relevant and add value to the disruption cycle. Job seekers in 2019 will need to be in tune with changing technologies, and will be required to relearn new skills with the ever evolving work environment.

“In 2019, employees will be more generalists than specialists, working across multiple teams, functions and even businesses – using mobile technologies and the ‘personal’ toolkit provided by the digital enterprise to maintain contact, alignment, productivity and effectiveness,” explains Mohan Sitharam, Chief Human Resources Officer at Subex.

“Cognitive technologies require people who can not only understand how they work but also think, innovate and solve problems using them. This will result in an inevitable shift in demand to recruit professionals with higher cognitive skills such as creativity, critical thinking, decision making and complex problem solving combined with basic technical and programming skills,” tells Visweswara Rao, SVP & Chief HR Officer, CSS Corp.

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Automation is No Longer a Technology Decision, rather a Business Decision: Nishikant Nigam, CSS Corp

Enterprises in India are rapidly moving into adoption of automation and cognitive technologies, and the appetite seems to be only growing

Automation is an aspect that has become a necessity for industries. The technology has various proven benefits such as increased productivity, reduced direct human labour costs and expenses, improved robustness in reduced time, and so on. In an interview with DataQuest, Nishikant Nigam, EVP & Chief Delivery Officer at CSS Corp, talks about the importance of the technology, and its reality in the Indian IT industry.

 

How important would you say is automation in this day and age?
At CSS Corp, we strongly believe AI and automation are unlocking and amplifying human potential, not replacing it. Contextual adoption of automation will help people focus much more on value added work and less on tedious and rote tasks.

Automation is no longer a technology decision, rather a business decision. By leveraging technologies like AI, automation, and analytics, businesses can understand and map customer behaviour, deliver products and services to the market faster, and create new avenues for revenue generation.

With advances in technology and its democratization, intelligent automation is no longer a differentiator, but a basic necessity in today’s environment. If a company is unable to adapt to this, they would find it very difficult to survive and stay afloat.

CSS Corp has built two unique cognitive automation platforms for IT & Network Operations (Back-office) and Customer Experience (Front-office) operations. Our platforms promote symbiotic convergence between automation, business process modernization and reimagine customer engagement models at different junctures to drive effortless engagements. These are not generic platforms, but contextual ones built around solving specific problems in customer engagement and productivity.

 

What impact will automation have on the job scenario?

According to the ‘Future of Jobs’ report by the World Economic Forum, nearly two-thirds of today’s job roles have at least 30% of tasks that could be automated based on currently available technology. However, all job roles cannot be automated, at least not yet.

In the digital era, some functions, tasks, and jobs are human-only, while others are bot-only. Routine tasks that are highly repetitive are the first to get automated. However, critical functions will still have a layer of human intervention, with cognitive technologies and chatbots performing the base-level functions. For e.g. Medical prescriptions and recommendations will continue to be handled by doctors, whereas, booking appointments, retrieving patient data and analysis can be handled by AI, which can enable doctors to accelerate the diagnosis of the illness. Looking forward, we can say that most tasks will soon continue to remain a hybrid between the two, with bots and humans co-existing.

I believe that concerns around jobs have always been there since times immemorial. Even with the advent of the industrial revolution, there was a concern that people will become jobless. But these kind of macro factors have their own way of sorting out, so the youngsters of today must not unduly worry.

They must have an open mind, reskill, invest in peer-learning, and learning from different sources in order to continuously evolve, experiment, and innovate. Ecosystem partnerships between industry, government, and academia, can also help to bridge skill gaps, drive investments, and frame policies that usher in new growth.

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CSS Corp is now Movate

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