How AI is Shaping Organizations?

Indian companies and start-ups are focusing on developing conversational bots, speech recognition tools, intelligent digital assistants and conversational services to be built over social media channels

Artificial Intelligence will undoubtedly reshape the business, making our lives easier and more sufficient. AI is seen as an indispensable tool for supporting humans in every aspect of life. In the future, it will be the driving force for the Industrial revolution mainly driven by data, networks and computing power.

The two fundamental pillars of digital transformation for any organization- “Speed” and “Customer Centric Innovation” which are on the top of CXOs’ minds. Every enterprise is dealing with two basic questions, “How fast can you innovate?” and “Can you innovate fast enough?” That said we see two broad technology trends answering the aforementioned questions emerging across the board, “Cloud Native” and “AI”. On one hand, enterprises who are in the experimentation and migration stages of cloud adoption have realized that the benefits of cloud go well beyond apex optimization to the acceleration of contextual innovation. And on the other hand, we see widespread adoption of NLP and cognitive computing to provide augmented/assistive intelligence and personalized experiences to customers. With Millennial in focus for most enterprises, delivering personalization has become important now more than ever. CXOs expect AI and specifically deep learning to pave the path to achieve such targeted personalization” said Anup Nair, VP, and CTO, Mphasis Digital.

Challenges In Application Of AI 
There are significant needs to automate the M2M or machine to human interactions to enable failure prevention. The biggest challenges in this area are changing the individual mindset and attract the right talent.

Sindhu Joseph, CEO, and Co-Founder, Cognicor said “From the perspective of applying AI, one of the key challenges is about the gradual rollout process that needs to be adopted for businesses. As systems need time to optimally learn user behavior and build patterns out of the same, it is better if it becomes a gradual rollout.

According to Kartik Iyengar, SVP-IoT, Cognitive, Robotics, VirusaPolaris, the potential of AI extends far beyond helping a given business run faster or more efficiently. Along they will bring disruptive changes and give rise to new problems that can challenge the economic, legal and ethical fabric of our societies. Some of them are:

Jobs: Traditionally, automation has been eating away blue collar jobs for decades and huge leaps in AI have accelerated this process whilst propagating it to other sectors/domains as well. It is true that AI revolution will create plenty of new skilled jobs but the problem is, for the most part, the people who are losing their jobs don’t have the skill sets to fill the vacant positions.

Responsibility: When the boundaries of responsibility are blurred between the user, developer and data trainer, every party involved can lay the blame on someone else in case of software or hardware malfunctions. This can become an issue when AU algorithms start making critical decisions. New regulations must be put in place to clearly predict and address legal issues that will surround AI in the near future.

Privacy: In the hunt of more and more data, companies may trek into the unmapped territory and cross privacy boundaries. Implementation of AI and ML can impersonate people by imitating their handwriting, voice, conversation style and unprecedented power that can come in handy in a number of dark scenarios.

Prakash Mallya, Managing Director, Sales and Marketing Group India, Intel said “Currently, the lack of insights to drive deep learning systems is a major challenge as vast amounts of data collected are not transmitted to systems. Data collected further needs to be analyzed to make effective decisions based on algorithms, and we must work together as an industry and as a society to help achieve the ultimate potential. The Indian data market is growing rapidly with the central government’s push for digitization which means increasing opportunities for using AI in the country.

How AI Helps Organizations?

Most AI applications are designed with a narrow focus so they perform some fairly complex tasks like scheduling business meetings and answering common customer requests. Automation helps productivity in teams, identifying the right use-cases and automating them helps organizations to reduce the effort spent on supporting applications and infrastructures.

Rohan Angrish, CTO of Capital Float said, “We use AI internally to allocate work within our company and also use it to make suggestions regarding loan decisions. Certain loan application processes are driven end-to-end by machines and disburse in as little as 90 seconds from the time of first signing on to our system.

In 2017, our company built Cognitive Customer Experience Platform, a ‘Cotelligent’ Platform where human and machine intelligence converges to provide a sophisticated, automated solution. Cognitive Customer Experience Platform integrates with all customer channels like voice, email, chat, and website across devices, giving a consistent customer experience. It is designed to offer personalized and context-driven support, with a human-like interaction. It aims to resolve a customer’s needs at first interaction by using NLP, AI, machine learning and deep learning techniques,” said Vasudevan Sundarababu, Digital Services Head, CSS Corp.

The scope of AI in the Indian Market

AI-based applications today have already touched people’s lives in ways that are often not fully speculated. Until now, this subtle proliferation of AI technology was driven largely by the private sector and focused primarily on consumer goods.

Indian companies and start-ups are focusing on developing conversational bots, speech recognition tools, intelligent digital assistants and conversational services to be built over social media channels which are purely driven by the need in Indian market unlike driverless cars and others in U.S. market,” said Badrinarayanan Jagannathan, Vice President IT Applications Management, Juniper Networks IEC.

He further added, “Embracing automation is a necessity in the current environment. It plays a key role in enabling productivity, improve customer service and enable businesses to grow more agile. This will trigger a new wave of growth in generating newer jobs. The key for individuals is their ability to be flexible and re-skill to develop and succeed.

Ritesh Gandotra as Director – Global Document Outsourcing, Xerox India said, “AI will eventually replace many routine functions of the IT organization, particularly on the operations side, such as in system administration, help desk, project management, and application support. With advances in artificial intelligence technology, machines will successfully emulate human cognition.

What Talents Companies Are Hiring?

AI revolution is creating plenty of new data science, machine learning, engineering and IT job positions to develop and maintain the AI systems and software. “Unfortunately, the supply is not that great and the real focus should be on upskilling and cross-skilling our existing workforce. The battle for top AI talent only gets tougher from here. At VirtusaPolaris, we tie up with universities and engage them in CoE (Center of Excellence) program to get the right data science consultants and AI engineers.” said Iyengar.

Another company, Cognicor is mostly looking at engineers and mathematicians specialized in AI, computational linguistics and knowledge management sciences. “We are looking at hiring some of the premium talents in the country and train them with latest commercial exposure to AI sciences. Getting access to the research opportunities in the latest AI has been a great incentive for attracting some of the best talents in this area,” said Sindhu Joseph.

Preview: Data Quest

Upskilling, Key to Thrive in the New Digital Normal: Experts

“In this rapidly evolving technological landscape, with various frameworks and tools coming into play and a mix of technologies and languages being used in them, organizations are looking for candidates with a holistic approach towards problem solving rather than owning niche skillsets.

Hence, rather than focusing on specific skill sets and investing enormous amount of time in championing them, the distinguishing factor that will set them apart is having fundamental knowledge on various trending skillsets in the industry. The onus is upon the leadership to equip the workforce with solid use cases, mentoring programs, and collaborative sessions towards experiential learning. For example, CSS Corp’s own ‘Digital Reskilling Framework’ hones budding leaders through leadership programs and mentor-mentee sessions. At this juncture of technological heterogeneity, it is imperative to be digitally savvy, agile, and nimble to learn, adopt and sharpen one’s skills towards being relevant to the current business environment.” – Brijesh Balakrishnan, SVP & Delivery Head – Digital Engineering Services and GIS, CSS Corp

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How The Changing Business World Has Impacted IT

Today’s IT department doesn’t look like it used to. Triggered by simultaneous shifts in the business world, everything has changed: the work, the methods and the speed. Here, we look at four recent business shifts and how they have impacted IT.

1. IT in business strategy: Every company is a technology company.

Nearly every company relies on IT to create differentiation in some way. Johnson & Johnson has long been a healthcare company, but it is heavily involved in biotech. General Electric, the industrial and one-time financial services company, conducts advanced research and sells tech products. Blue Apron sells food, but its heart is that of a tech company.

The challenge for businesses today lies in recognizing the opportunities that come from new technologies and offering value propositions before digital-native startups capture the market. Who knows what might be possible better than CIOs and CTOs? Rather than waiting to hear what capabilities are needed, IT leaders should be in the boardroom presenting new sources of innovation and efficiency. Building business and IT strategy simultaneously results in tight alignment, top-line growth and a competitive edge.

2. A fast-paced world: New development life cycles change IT culture.

The cadence of business is accelerating. Successful businesses have responded by becoming more flexible and adaptable, learning to quickly pivot to serve customers in a rapidly changing competitive landscape. But where does that flexibility come from? Often, from their IT departments.

For decades, there was one dominant software development life cycle (SDLC): waterfall. When businesses started to move faster, IT couldn’t keep up. Then iterative, lean, agile, spiral and DevOps models emerged. They brought significant benefits — better alignment between business strategy and IT, for example, with more rapid delivery and better end products. But adopting these SDLCs requires significant cultural changes. IT has to start working before key decisions are made and account for the possibility of the organization changing its mind.

3. The rise of XaaS: IT departments move from technology providers to technology diplomats.

Cloud computing today enables just about anything to be delivered “as-a-service” (XaaS), making it easy for business people to bypass IT and purchase technology from outside the organization. This democratization of IT has caused tech fluency to spread throughout organizations. Smart software salespeople target business unit leaders, not IT execs. So where does that leave IT?

Organizations still require strategies for information and systems. A siloed technology landscape is not usually the most effective one. Someone must sort through competing requests, prioritize IT spend, lead programs and projects, and manage vendors.

The result is that IT departments need to change their mindsets — and their skill sets. Without a monopoly license on providing technology, they need to be diplomats and negotiators. The new task at hand is to sell the business on what they want it to buy and to ensure that smart decisions are made, even if not entirely by them. Facilitating honest conversations around what the business wants can reveal a variety of things — from unrecognized requirements to misunderstood capabilities, future limitations to future growth opportunities. As IT leaders sharpen their skills, their abilities to help businesses navigate their technical futures open up a world of opportunities.

4. A digital revolution: The customer is king.

Today’s most successful brands create personalized experiences — and they grow their revenue two to three times faster than competitors. The Amazon effect (almost frictionless shopping and near-immediate results) has spilled over into every industry, with customers’ expectations for superior experiences rising.

The result is a digital revolution — not just web, mobile and social, but CRM, analytics, artificial intelligence and more. The need to keep up with customers drives an enormous percentage of most IT budgets today and defines much of the relationship between IT and business.

When database marketing began in the early 1980s, companies used direct mail and phone to market to customers one on one. As the use of the internet became widespread, email became a popular tool for direct marketing. Customer relationship management was invented when companies began consolidating detailed data about customers into centralized databases and then mining the information, turning it into valuable insights.

The focus on web, mobile and social has only continued to grow. Today, this information — plus external data sets and more — is combined to create a 360-degree view of the customer. The result has been a major shift in the skills, priorities and working relationship between business and IT.

What’s next?

As the world continues to speed up, one thing we know for sure is that things will change faster than ever before. IT departments of the future will have two crucial needs — adaptability and business alignment.

Adaptability allows IT to reinvent itself even as it continues to deliver. Services can’t be interrupted while IT implements a major transformation program. Instead, IT needs to be constantly adjusting and improving, taking changes in stride while simultaneously providing superior services. IT leaders must deal with the problems of today while growing toward the vision of tomorrow.

Business alignment means having a shared goal with the rest of the organization and driving all activities toward the pursuit of that goal. Business alignment is easily visualized in heavily tech-dependent companies (like Uber or Airbnb) but is just as important in companies with less visible dependencies (like health care and manufacturing). The consequences of failing to deliver this business alignment can be seen in companies like Toys R Us, which is going out of business largely due to failures to thrive against digital native Amazon.

It’s easy to look backward and see how business has impacted and changed IT. It’s harder to predict what comes next, but with adaptability and alignment, IT departments can handle whatever is thrown at them. As Steve Jobs said: “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.”

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Skilling our way towards a better future: World Youth Skills Day

The International Labour Organization has forecast that the pandemic could reduce global working hours by nearly 7 percent in the second quarter of 2020—equivalent to 195 million full-time jobs. McKinsey’s analysis suggests that, in regions as diverse as Africa, Europe, and the United States, up to a third of the workforce is vulnerable to reduced income, furloughs, or layoffs as a result of the crisis. Many millions of jobs could be lost permanently and many have already been lost.

But many experts also expect the global economy to slowly revive. In most countries lockdown is now lifted and even the worst hit sectors like aviation and hospitality are now opening up. Further like a silver lining in the black clouds, the pandemic has also bolstered demands for digital skills and talent in sectors like health, pharmaceuticals, FMCG, and e-commerce.

It has become absolutely critical that talent leaders now invest their time and effort in identifying the critical roles, mapping the skill requirements, and preparing the workforce for the now and the future of work. Talent leaders would have to work along with the other stakeholders like the employees, the government, and other associations. The process starts with building on the broad views of the sectors, functions, and occupations at risk. Most importantly, focusing on the skills that have become more relevant amid the pandemic.

Skills in demand
“The pandemic has accelerated the need for 21st century literacies. Tech skills such as AI, ML, XR and cloud computing will continue to be in demand in the next decade, however, being effective remote workers possessing creativity, influence, storytelling skills and the ability to synthesize digital content will become key differentiators for young talent,” says Sumeet Moghe, Principal Consultant, ThoughtWorks.

The coming years will be quite interesting for the job market. One one hand, we’ll welcome the digital natives born in this century. On the other hand, as we emerge from this downturn, low skill jobs will give way to higher skill jobs in a highly distributed environment. And, that’s going to drive a massive mismatch in demand-supply.

New entrants to the job market, only familiar with commodity skills, could become obsolete at a very early stage in their careers. For example, it’s not enough to just be a full stack programmer.

“One needs exposure to multiple new technologies while demonstrating the ability to work collaboratively and remotely. To that end, industry, government and academia need to partner up to ensure the next generation has real world experience in relevant tech and soft skills, well before they hit the job market,” added Moghe.

According to Brijesh Balakrishnan, SVP & Delivery Head – Digital Engineering Services and GIS, CSS Corp., “With agility becoming imperative, custom development skills like JavaScript frameworks, AI specific knowledge in cognitive services (AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform), DevOps, AIOps, SecOps and NoOps will go a long way.”

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Organizations need to adopt a systematic approach towards assessing employee skills

Visweswara Rao, SVP & Chief HR Officer at CSS Corp decodes the ICT skills landscape in an interview to Dataquest. Excerpts:

If you look at the ICT skills landscape, what according to you are the two challenges the industry is facing now?

According to IDC Research, the advent of emerging technologies including AI, Internet of Things (IoT), robotics, and AR will enable the next wave of growth in the information and communications technology (ICT) industry, widening the overall market opportunity to $5.5 trillion by 2020.

However, the shortage of skilled workforce is emerging as a major challenge to growth and future in the ICT sector, especially in India. Emerging technologies are prompting businesses to reimagine their business models and engagement journeys. They are enabling organizations to achieve business outcomes much faster and nimbler. Hence, the demand for completely new sets of skills is unprecedented.

ICT industry is evolving at an exponential pace. In this context, it is extremely important for technology leaders to focus on fostering a learning culture that would enable employees to build skills on new age technologies that are contextual to ICT. The two big skills and people related challenges the ICT industry is facing now is (a) lack of expertise in digital technologies and (b) lack of contextual application of digital while solving business problems.

One of the approaches to tackle this problem is to encourage and promote partnerships between the industry and academia. Many companies in ICT industry are collaborating with universities, academia, and local governments to bridge these gaps and boost the innovation quotient in new tech areas.

Organizations need to adopt a systematic approach towards assessing employee skills on an ongoing basis in emerging areas, identify gaps and align them with relevant learning modules. This would ensure skill-level gaps are addressed regularly and also ensures employees are future ready.

Organizations should also adopt unconventional hiring methods like hackathons and break the code models to attract niche skillsets from the market.

Niche skills like AI and analytics are required for all engineering and technical students, as they are the foundational levers of all digital engagements, and this is possible only if universities are constantly updating their curriculums to keep up with the pace of technology changes. For e.g. skills like AI and data analytics are sector-agnostic and have been delivering transformational benefits to companies across all industries.

The Digital disruption coupled with automation has completely changed the nature of tech skills required for today’s ICT jobs – as an organization how are you coping with sourcing the right skills?

Staying competitive in services business requires continuously improving skill sets and competencies. To augment our efforts towards enhancing our technology competency, we launched ‘Reimagine’, a digital career progression framework to reorient our service lines and re-align the growth of our employees to meet the growing business needs.

Our “Reimagine” Digital Career Progression Framework has been specifically built to fast-track employee reskilling initiatives within the organization. In 2017, we won the NASSCOM Award for having one of the best digital reskilling platforms in the Indian IT industry. The framework facilitates an innovative approach to employee up-skilling and cross-skilling in digital technologies. So far we have seen 9000+ course enrollments in the last 12 months.

The Reimagine framework promotes a multi-disciplinary approach towards acquiring new domain and technology skill sets. The framework includes structured learning paths around AI, automation, data science, machine learning and other topics in a logical progression. The Reimagine framework equips employees with an analytical and problem-solving mindset of curiosity, creativity, and critical thinking.

Some of the key aspects of CSS Corp’s Reimagine Framework are: Digital Re-profiling: Enabling employee at all levels of the pyramid – Digital awareness, digital basics, digital intermediary & digital advanced Democratization of Innovation: Labs with access to emerging technologies like AI, analytics, cloud, DevOps, IoT, and mobile

Incubation Hub: Prototyping and designing customer engagement platforms/solutions e.g. CSS Corp’s AI Platform- Cognitive CX Platform Hyper-Personalization of Learning Modules: Anytime, anywhere and any device learning through Virtual University, MOOCs, and JAM Additionally, CSS Corp also has an ongoing partnership with BITS Pilani on a program called ‘Earn As You Learn’ – a specialized M. Tech work integrated learning program. A program that helps CSS Corp employees to acquire knowledge and skills required for excelling in their careers with the added advantage of gaining a top-notch M.Tech. Degree in software engineering from one of India’s most prestigious universities.

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The firms hiring in India

Some industries – from internet to insurance to gaming – are hiring even during the pandemic. Also, there are firms that are doling out pay hikes. Check out a list of companies (not exhaustive) that are upping their talent acquisition and retention game.

HCL Technologies plans to hire 15,000 people from campuses this fiscal year, up from 9,000 last year.
Property portal NoBroker plans to hire nearly 300 professionals across verticals such as business, marketing and technology.
Digital payments platform PhonePe has made around 300 fresh hires and plans to add another 400-450 in functions like tech and engineering over the next year or so.
Tata Consultancy Services plans to hire around 40,000 freshers from Indian campuses this year – unchanged from last year.
Nielsen is hiring for roles including banking associate, P2P lead, and master data associate, among others.
MobiKwik is looking to hire 100 people in FY21, including for product and engineering functions.
Solar91 Cleantech is hiring for roles such as procurement executive, O&M, HR executive and project engineers/managers.
NUVIA Inc is hiring for several functions including software engineers and developers.
MyGate is hiring for business development manager, business development executive and growth manager positions.
Crescendo Global is hiring for analyst/senior analyst role for Credit Research.
Health insurance startup Plum is hiring for roles including product designer, mobile engineer, inside sales lead and growth marketing lead.
Amazon India has announced 20,000 seasonal employment opportunities in customer support service. Most of these jobs will be work-from-home. This is on top of the 50,000 seasonal jobs it announced earlier for its fulfillment and delivery network.
ClearTax is looking to hire 80 new employees across departments such as engineering, product design and marketing, the company told LinkedIn.
National Maritime Foundation is looking to hire Associate Fellows in various research areas.
Accenture and Morgan Stanley are hiring for the role of big data developer and full stack developer respectively, as per a Business Insider report.
Rapido is currently hiring for roles including test architect, lead data scientist, lead web developer, senior data engineer and senior manager/director in business development, the company told LinkedIn.
KeyValue Software Systems has multiple openings each for UI engineer, senior software engineer, full stack engineer and product architect.
ShipperBuddy is looking to add over 800 business development managers in the logistics arena, the company told LinkedIn.
Chinese smartphone maker Realme has announced plans to hire 7,500 people in India by the end of the year.
IBM has hundreds of open positions in India, including those for program managers, data scientists and network architects.
Companies including Tech Mahindra, Intel, Larsen & Toubro Infotech and Wipro are hiring engineers, per a Business Insider report.
Outdoor clothing firm Wildcraft has hired over 30,000 employees in the past two months and plans to onboard another 70,000.
Maveric Systems is looking to add more than 200 associates in Q2 across its data, digital, core banking, and quality engineering businesses, said CEO Ranga Reddy.
Blue Sky Analytics is hiring for tech lead, full stack developers, data scientists, DevOps Engineers and GIS Analysts, the company strategy lead told LinkedIn.
The Minimalist is hiring for roles including UI/ UX Designer, full-stack developer, copywriter, senior designer, digital marketing executive and QA Engineer, the company told LinkedIn.
Dunzo is looking for senior leaders – managers, directors, architects, and tech leads.
Edtech firms including Whitehat Jr, Unacademy, Simplilearn, Vedantu, are all planning to hire in the range of 500-2000 employees, Economic Times reports.
Five insurers, including PNB MetLife Insurance, Tata AIG and Reliance Nippon are reportedly looking to hire around 5,000 people as they anticipate a boom in business once the lockdown ends.

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CSS Corp positioned in Winner’s Circle in HfS Research’s Telecommunications Operations Services Report

CSS Corp, a new-age IT services and technology support company, today announced that it has been recognized in the “Winner’s Circle” in HfS Research’s Blueprint 2018 report on telecom operations services.

The report assessed 18 service providers in execution and innovation, covering aspects including strategic vision, investments in future capabilities, robust services delivery, and driving new insights and models.

The report positioned CSS Corp as a leader in telecom operations services that excel both at execution and innovation. CSS Corp has been enabling telecom organizations to improve customer experience, create new revenue streams, and enhance operational efficiency, strategically aligned with their business goals. The company has been investing heavily in the Triple-A Trifecta (AI, Automation, and Analytics) to improve Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) and enable differentiated growth opportunities for the telecom and networking industry.

Elena Christopher, Vice President – Industry Research at HfS Research, “Telecommunication firms and their ecosystem partners are working diligently to modernize their core businesses while simultaneously investing in and developing new offerings. CSS Corp has quietly emerged as a strong service partner for these firms helping to enable the digital transformation of network services and customer experience, enabling both optimization and new revenue potential. These timely skills coupled with industry-leading relationship management and flexible business models have elevated CSS Corp to the HfS Winner’s Circle.”

Manish Tandon, CEO, CSS Corp, said, “Telecom companies are shifting gears towards an ecosystem-based business model partnering synergistically with digital content service providers. With seismic changes in the market environment and increased executive push towards digitization, telcos are forging new business models to create and capture value. Our vision to drive growth for telecom and networking companies is driven by a clear appreciation of these disruptive forces and deep understanding of the telecom industry.”

“Being recognized in the Winner’s Circle by HfS Research is an important milestone that validates our innovation and execution capabilities in telecom. We continue to seek out new opportunities for co-innovation and collaboration with our clients, laying a clear vision for the industry as a whole,” he added further.

Sunil Mittal – EVP, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, said, “Leveraging our deep industry know-how, we have continuously endeavored to digitally enable telcos to transform from traditional service models to new age service models. This recognition by HfS Research is another testimony to our capabilities and reinforces the faith that our customers and stakeholders have shown in us over the years.

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CSS Corp’s service levels improve upto 50%

The approach ‘great customer satisfaction comes with a great employee satisfaction’ spurred the company to develop an in-house innovative solution that took service delivery to the next level.

Be it work from home or from the office, measuring employee productivity, efficiency and satisfaction is a task for any business. Linking client’s growth with employee growth is another uphill task. CSS Corp, however, seems to have all figured it all out.

In conversation with ETCIO, Rahul Joshi, CTO, CSS Corp, provides insights into a home-grown innovative enterprise solution that has helped the company improve its service levels upto 50%.

“We have built an enterprise insight system that we call ‘Coeus’. Coeus is known as the god of intellect. This platform manages the performance of almost 3500 agents and provides visibility into it to not just the ops managers but also the CXOs. We have incorporated more than 25 matrices, deployed over 100 business rules, some customized to certain accounts and some generic. We analyze almost 1 million contacts per month,” Joshi said.

CSS Corp now onboards any new engagement onto this platform as soon as it goes into operations mode. “This has been in place for about 12-15 months now,” he said.

“Coeus has helped us increase productivity levels by 25%. This had the biggest impact on our service delivery which has since gone up to 50%. We realized that customer satisfaction is only going to come with employee satisfaction. So, measuring employee productivity, efficiency and satisfaction was important,” he added.

Joshi believes that the increase in productivity is because of the feedback that the team is able to give on Coeus. An employee is measured against his team, his deliverables, and professional growth.

“An engineer would usually be measured against X and Y’s performance. We don’t do that. Let’s say I am in Team A and this team is supposed to deliver a customer metric at 80%. So, I will be measured against the performance of the team and the customer’s performance. And If I am out of range of the team’s performance either good or bad, it will be flagged and coaching interventions will be automatically created within the training ecosystem,” he explained.

There are various parameters that CSS Corp considers whenever it is giving feedback to employees. The first is the KPIs and a few other skills. For example, for a contact center agent, it depends on his CSAT, his first call resolution, communication skills, the number of training that he has undergone, experience in the team and how well he documents the case. This all helps in creating an agent persona.

On the basis of score, feedback, and persona, the managers can further deploy employees on a project or assignment that aligns with his skills and personality.

Joshi mentioned that these initiatives also helped the company interact with the employees in a meaningful way in a data-driven manner so that they can have distinct conversations.

“We have enough data now within the Coeus platform to predict the performance. So, today I can sit and ask Coeus if I can match up the numbers of June with July, and Coeus will tell me if I will be able to perform and match the numbers. This answer will be provided with 80-85% confidence. For an individual, it can also tell the manager if he or she will be able to make up the KPIs that constitute his or her performance,” he concluded.


Data Security Incidents Prompt Organizations to Improve their Security Standards

The data held in every business is valuable, and in the prevailing hyper-competitive business environment, all enterprises are looking to leverage and monetize the information it holds to the maximum potential.

The threat landscape is exploding at an unimaginable pace. Cybercriminals are discreetly finding new ways to invade the most sensitive data from networks and to gain access, plant malware and launch a remote attack, and cause disruption to the organizational security. Safeguarding business data is a huge challenge for businesses today.

This disturbing upward trend in cyber-attack and data security incidents is prompting organizations to improve their security standards in every aspect to protect data and combat security breaches. Right from training employees to formulating robust security policies, organizations are setting up various strategies to secure data and assets that are critical to business operations.

“Enterprises have been able to gather, store and process data available in their business environment and to also use it for business purposes using big data analytics with reasonable success rates. This has made them realize that big data across their business environment is a valuable asset and needs to be well protected.

As a consequence, in addition to various legal requirements, most organisations take steps to protect their business data, assets and critical infrastructure with real time visibility, detection and remediation of threats. Information security policies, vulnerability analysis and mitigation procedures, updated cybersecurity solutions, training in-house staff and various other aspects are being revamped and recalibrated,” said Sriram TV- Director – Consulting & Business Development, Juniper Networks.

Data protection has become one of the top agenda for enterprises to remain competitive and profitable in their respective businesses. Traditional signature-based defense mechanisms are not enough to defend against sophisticated attacks. To battle against advanced data security risks, organizations must adopt proactive threat intelligence and mitigation strategies.

Importance of Securing Data

“The world of data security changes every day. Not only are there new threats from hackers, but changes in how we work are fundamentally shifting how we need to think about protecting important information” said Anjali Arora, SVP and Chief Product Officer, Rocket Software.

According to Gagandeep Singh, Practice Head, Risk Advisory Services & Security Intelligence and Operations, Aujas, organizations are realizing and recognizing the risks they are exposed to when it comes to their data which is leading to a more matured and considerate approach towards the data protection. Our industry and professionals do use data protection and data security interchangeably, however, they happen to be similar but two different terms one more encompassing than the other. The approach the most matured organizations have taken or may take would consist of the following steps:

Data Protection Policy

  • Involvement of business owners who also would be the data owners
  • In-Depth understanding of critical and non-critical data
  • Data Classification and labelling
  • Data Flow Analysis
  • Data Leakage risk assessment


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World Youth Skills Day: How IT upskilling is the need of the hour for professionals

It can be an overwhelming situation for today’s aspiring young technologists. However, it is best to aware of why they should opt for upskilling in the present time.

July 15 is celebrated as World Youth Skills Day to recognise the young talent that are acquiring skills to boost their career. Especially, amidst the pandemic, more and more professionals and youth reskilled and upskilled to rule the market and gain access to the new-age job opportunities that are available.

The young talent is not only upskilling themselves to become better but they are also trying to be a part of the evolution. With this, skilled individuals can find employment opportunities in the market and policymakers.

Commenting on the upskilling for professionals and seekers, Vikrant Gupta, Vice President – HR, Global Markets and DTS, HARMAN said, “Observing the demand-supply gap in skills, several companies have adopted the hire-train-deploy (HTD) model, wherein campus recruits can be trained by subject matter experts in the organizations or even staffing firms on the exact skill requirements before deploying them with the clients or specific products/projects within a company.”

More and more youth are not embracing the path of innovation to come out as the major face with top-notch skills. Especially, amid the pandemic, the youth are actively upskilling to ensure that their future is secure.

Balvinder Khurana, Technology Principal & Global Data Community Lead, Thoughtworks said, “Going remote has presented young technologists with an opportunity for learning unlike before. The avenues range from video conferences to podcasts to virtual tech boot camps to one-on-one conversations with thought leaders – irrespective of physical location. Young technologists are participating in global conferences, opting for online courses and learning from industry experts.”

She named a few in-demand skills that the youth must look for as Data Structure and Algorithms, Data and Analytics, Security, DevOps, and Cloud.

Mahesh Zurale, Senior Managing Director, Lead – Advanced Technology Centers in India (ATCI), Accenture said, “The most important skill that technology professionals need today is the ability to continuously learn and adapt. A continuous learning mindset and ongoing investments is required to build technical and functional skills. Additionally, one should focus on developing skills such as intellectual curiosity, empathy, creativity and an innovation mindset that will be key to meet future role requirements.”


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