June

CSS Corp Working on AI and IoT based Solutions to provide better IT services

The solutions would help with streamlining customer data, extract insights to identify customer propensities and offer context

-driven support with a human-like interaction. Also, the company is investing in SDN Services and Solutions i.e. Software Defined Networking Solutions (SDN) and Network Function Virtualization (NFV automation services) to improve the efficiency of its services

Global technology company CSS Corp is working on new solutions which would be integrating capabilities of artificial intelligence, machine intelligence, analytics and Internet of Things (IoT) thereby helping the company provide better IT services and technical support to its clientele.

The company is responsible for supporting 30 out of 50 telecom companies in the world.

In an interaction with ET Telecom, the company’s CEO Manish Tandon told about the five new solutions that the company is working on namely Auraa, Active Insights, Cognitive Customer Experience Platform, Premium Tech Support, and Cloud Transformation suite.

The solutions would help with streamlining customer data, extract insights to identify customer propensities and offer context-driven support with a human-like interaction. Also, the company is investing in SDN Services and Solutions i.e. Software Defined Networking Solutions (SDN) and Network Function Virtualization (NFV automation services) to improve the efficiency of its services.

The company is based out of Chennai and Bangalore and has a head-count of 5500 technology professionals in 16 of its global centers across the world.

We recently recruited 30+ Data Scientists and Data Engineers in India to augment our platform capabilities as a part of the Digital COE. This team is instrumental in building AI, Machine Learning and automation solutions,” said Tandon.

We are seeing significant acceptance for our digital services like Insights as a Service and Conversational AI among our customers in the telecom sector,” added Tandon.

CSS Corp recently collaborated with BITS Pilani to launch the ‘Earn as You Learn’ which is a specialized M.Tech work integrated learning program.

Preview: ETCIO

Demystifying the Digital Workplace

Digital is playing a significant role in disrupting workplaces.

What does the word ‘Workplace’ mean? The word has different meanings, for the baby boomer generation it is the traditional office set-up – meeting rooms, office desks and office phones. For  today’s generation, particularly the millennial, expected response would be centered around digital touch points, virtual personal assistants, tablets, SaaS based productivity tools, unified communication, chat, smartphones or instant messaging.

This article discusses how the digital workplace, along with consumerization of IT and new age technologies is changing the dynamics of today’s workplace.

Transforming the Workplace Digitally

Digital is prompting organizations across industries to reimagine their workplace strategies for better business success as the correlation between employee engagement and business performance is becoming increasingly relevant. Digital is playing a significant role in disrupting workplaces.

Today’s digital workplace is an always connected environment that enables faster and instant access to everything an employee needs. The digital workplace promotes employee collaboration, engagement and innovation through a consumer-like computing experience. Consumerization of IT and convergence of mobile technologies with social computing is changing the workplace dynamics. Proper planning, overall strategy, roadmap and execution are all linked to overall productivity and agility of the employees along with work engagement is required for a Digital Workplace.

Reimagining the Workplace with Digital

Generation Z, the demographic cohorts after the Millennials, are expected to enter the workforce in large numbers in the next few years. They, as consumers, expect personalized, user and persona based support solutions for their connected devices. To engage effectively with this demographic group, enterprises will need accelerate innovation and build a better workplace of tomorrow.

Here are the key trends that are driving the transition from the traditional workforce to a digital workforce:

Digital Dexterity

Digital dexterity is an organization’s ability to self-organize and adapt to evolving digital technologies in order to deliver more value to the customer. It is the level of adaptability to new technologies, evolving customer and market expectations, along with optimum resource allocation.

Digital Collaboration

Thanks to increasing consumerisation of IT technology and devices, an increasing number of digital workers are expecting the same ease of use with their work-related technology and tools, as any of their consumer related experiences (such as online shopping) in their personal lives.

Digital Innovation

The dynamic pace of the modern work environment means that employees must learn to adopt collaboration and productivity tools to get their work done easily and faster. The dependence on connected and collaboration devices has further accelerated the change, which is challenging for employers to meet the growing demands.

Device-Centric to a User-Centric Model

A revolution is occurring in today’s workplace. Personalization and consumerisation of employee engagement through digital has increasingly changed the way people work. With the continuous evolution of the workplace and employee expectations, businesses that do not adopt a digital workplace strategy, face the maximum risk with regards to employee engagement.

Digital Business Enablement

The digital workplace along with the supporting technology tools can transform information technology from a support-based function to a business-enabling function.

The digital workplace can provide the following business benefits through proper implementation:

Revenue Generation: Every day, we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data — so much that 90% of the data in the world today has been created in the last two years alone. Digital applications can enable sales and marketing professionals to find the right resources and identify product up-selling or cross-selling opportunities for their customers. The rise of digital analytics tools, which involves the analysis of business data, can be used to drive a continuous improvement of the online experience for customers

Productivity Improvements: Improved workplace tools can save employee time and improve productivity. The implementation of a comprehensive digital workplace strategy can enable knowledge workers in their daily tasks through collaboration, communication, connection, and delivery

Improve the Customer Experience (CX): The use of data analytics tools and customer insights is critical for an organization to track their customer’s digital footprints. Structured customer data can provide valuable information on the type of transacting customers, the categories of products purchased, and the market demand for a product line. The CX factor can be managed effectively using digital analytics

Employee Augmentation

The optimum use of digital technologies can augment the capabilities of employees, particularly in the retail sector. Some of the trends that are helping employees include:

Cognitive technologies – to observe and analyze human work, and delegate common or routine work to digital assistants

Physical technologies – including advanced robotic technologies, which are compact and suitable to be integrated in any human workflow environment

Collaborative technologies – including software tools that can improve how product developers can create new products

Conclusion

Workplace innovation is critical to any business success, and depends on the business integration of emerging technologies that are appearing in the market. Emerging innovations in digital product technology can be integrated into the organization’s workplace strategy, after assessment of their business value.

The digital workplace has added differentiating value to the highly-competitive market, which has experienced new needs including mobility, seamless integration across technology devices, and global collaboration. With the rise of cloud-based services, the digital workplace is poised to become the new normal for providing new digital services to the customers, which cannot be delivered through traditional delivery modes.

Preview: BW Disrupt

CSS Corp unveils Cognitive Customer Experience Platform

In a bid to up the ante on customer experience, US-headquartered CSS Corp has launched the Cognitive Customer Experience Platform, an artificial intelligence (AI)-driven platform. Cognitive Customer Experience Platform integrates with all customer channels like voice, email, chat, and website across devices.

“Cognitive Customer Experience Platform is designed to offer personalized and context-driven support, with a human-like interaction. It aims at resolving your customer’s needs at first interaction by using natural language processing (NLP), AI, machine learning and deep learning techniques,” said Vasudevan Sundarababu, vice-president, digital, CSS Corp.

As consumers use multiple channels to voice concerns or seek customer support, offering an omnichannel support experience has become imperative for corporates. A study by consulting giant McKinsey found that for companies that excel with digital customer care, customer satisfaction can go up by 33%, while generating savings of 25-30%, due to reduced call center volumes.

The AI platform can constantly learn from a customer’s interactions and build on its knowledge base.

 “The virtual assistant understands your customers’ intent and responds to their queries in real time. Cognitive Customer Experience Platform remembers facts, learns from previous conversations and can access online information by integrating with enterprise systems,” he said.

A SaaS-based solution, Cognitive Customer Experience Platform can be used as a standalone support interface or as a platform integrated with Amazon Echo, Apple Siri, Microsoft Cortana, and Google Now.

With delivery centers across the globe, the company has deeply invested in digital and analytics. CSS Corp’s digital practice has 45 customers totally, which primarily handles analytics, mobile, AI, application modernization, machine learning, and virtual assistance.
Preview: Times of India

Winning Stroke: Interview with Sunil Mittal, CMO of CSS CORP

“I get hyper-focused and forget to take a break. Whether it’s a client that I know we can serve really well or teaching my daughter to ride her bike”

1. If not in the current profession, you would be?

Growing up, my family had a business and I had always planned to join them. When I graduated University, I took a job in the IT services industry to gain experience – and I loved it. And I never looked back. But if I wasn’t doing this, I think that is where I would be.

2. One tune you always hum.

There are actually two. One is “Jab Koi Baat Bigad Jaye” and the other is “Dream Big” by Ryan Shupe & the RubberBand.

3. One book to read when you want to motivate yourselves.

The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz. The author writes about the situation where the conventional wisdom fails you. It’s the ability to “spot the next move” during those times that makes a great leader.

4. One dialogue of a movie that motivates you or you like the most.

I like the movie, The Pursuit of Hapiness because it shows how hard work and vision are unstoppable. There is a passage where Chris Gardner tells his son, “Don’t ever let someone tell you, you can’t do something. Not even me. You got a dream, you got to protect it. People can’t do something themselves, they want to tell you, you can’t do it. You want something, go get it. Period. All right?” That has always resonated with me.

5. The place you never been to and always want to go?

French Polynesia. In the past, at one of my client locations, my view out of the window included a billboard advertising Bora Bora, with the sun setting behind Mt. Otemanu. We’ve been waiting for my daughters to be old enough to scuba with us. I view it as an opportunity to work on my patience!

 

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CSS Corp sees a bright spot with Manish Tandon

“CSS Corp sees a bright spot with Manish Tandon 

CSS Corp, majority owned by PE firm Partners Group, said it is seeing a turnaround with a larger deal pipeline for the next few years. The IT services company said it has reported nearly 11% growth in revenue end of financial year 2017-18 to $158 million.

This has brought the company back on growth track ever since former InfosysNSE 3.18 % executive vicepresident Manish Tandon took over as the chief executive officer in August 2016. Tandon left Infosys as one of the leaders in healthcare, life sciences, insurance and HiTech business segments.

“Last year we had reported better than industry growth at (nearly) 11% and we had inherited declining revenue when I came in six quarters ago.

There has been a turnaround in our services business. We have added 20 new logos (customers) in the history of CSS including some marquee names in technology (sector),” said Tandon in an interview. He said CSS Corp has a deal pipeline worth $400 million in total contract value spread over next few years and seeing large deals vary between $8-10 m “We get two or three such (large) deals in a year and one in a quarter is good. Normally our average deal size is $1 to 2 million,” added Tandon.

CSS Corp, which gets 90% business from the US market, is focusing on outcome-based projects. The company said it has significantly brought in automation and artificial intelligence in services delivery.

Tandon said that the focus on outcome-based projects have created a level-playing field for the industry. “We compete on outcome and our win rate has been 50-55%.” In fact, he pointed out, a CSS Corp often sees companies like Tech MahindraNSE 1.89 % to a boutique technology service player as competition in certain deals .

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ETCIO Wall – CIO of the week

1, I like being a CIO because….

In todays world where technology has become an essential part of how businesses function, the CIOs role has become more multidimensional in terms of business, technology and innovation. I like this role as it allows me to work with people from multiple business functions across the organisation to innovate on new technologies and identify newer ways to create impactful business outcomes. Simply put, I view a CIO as the transformation agent who walks a tight rope between business and technology and is constantly seeking winning strategies without any fears.

2) An ‘Aha ‘ leadership moment in your professional career.

Since the CISO function also reports to me, I proposed a plan to reduce the decision-making layers in our cyber response team where end users can escalate any potential attack directly to the IT/Infosec owners. For this, we equipped our staff with cyberattack (e.g. phishing) training where they could experience simulated cyber-attacks with real-life scenarios. We also educated them on response practices. This eventually came in handy when a real phishing attack was noticed by our end user and the training that was provided kicked in. The end user reached out to our Cyber Threat response team and we were able to kill the attack in its early stages.

The decision to invest in training and improving our teams response time had paid off when a real attack took place. This reinforced my belief that some complex issues can be handled with a solution as simple as reducing response time and training. The moment I made that decision was an Aha moment for me

3) As a CIO what was the toughest decision you made?

The cultural transformation within the organisation led to some tough decisions from my end. We were engaged in revamping the firms strategic agenda which required a complete digital transformation and new age technological adoption from employees, whom I had hoped to take along during the journey as active participants. Unfortunately, not everyone in the IT function could ride the transformation wave, leading to some churn.

4) What’s the ‘next big thing’ in your industry vertical?

With technology developing every day, the next big thing is constantly transforming. For now, from a modern economic infrastructure standpoint, 5G, Cloud and Edge seem to be in focus. These technologies have opened endless possibilities to help organisations realise ideas which were not possible earlier. Similarly, artificial intelligence and machine learning have fuelled new possibilities in ambient computing. It is also worth noting that stackable technologies have the potential to supercharge the entire digitization efforts. Apart from this, I also hope that Quantum computing, though in early stages, will take us beyond supercomputers in the future.

5) One thing that IT departments should do better.

While we have developed multiple technologies and solutions, IT service should be pragmatic in using them wisely basis clear understanding of problems that are being addressed. Adoption of too many platforms and tools that work in silos will eventually be counterproductive. Rather, IT departments must innovate and invest in developing platforms that are built with independent technologies but work as a single unit. It should be collaborative and serve with a common purpose to yield maximum benefits.

CSS Corp wins “Digital Company of the Year 2019” at BTVI Business Leader of Year Awards

CSS Corp, a new age IT services and technology support company, announced it has won the ‘Digital Company of the Year 2019’ at the recently concluded BTVI Business Leader of the Year Awards.

The company was recognized for its innovation in digital customer experience and IT operations leveraging cognitive technologies that enable brands to deliver agility, speed, and control across customer interactions and diverse IT ecosystems.

CSS Corp’s digital solutions are built to simplify customer interactions and business operations through the implementation of AI capabilities and advanced statistical models. In a customer support ecosystem, the cognitive CX platform helps reorient organizations to adopt agile and contextual strategies that proactively assess conditions, analyze problems, and recommend solutions to drive omnichannel customer engagement.

In an IT operations ecosystem, CSS Corp’s intelligent automation solutions help in dynamically and proactively monitor and manage IT infrastructure, maximizing up time. CSS Corp also helps organizations modernize their legacy applications leveraging cloud technologies. It provides a unique services value proposition that blends digital technologies with services to drive outcomes for its customers.

“Our deep-rooted customer-centric approach has helped us build a progressive and agile solution portfolio that elevates the customer experience. Our cognitive capabilities have been instrumental in transforming CX and IT operations for organizations across industries. We are delighted to be recognized for our innovation and are committed to maintaining our investments towards building a nimble delivery ecosystem that leverages best-in-class people, digitally mature processes and next-generation technologies that mobilize organizations to deliver stellar customer experiences”, said Manish Tandon, Chief Executive Officer, CSS Corp.

6 Reasons Why Gaming Organizations Need Good Customer Services

Entertainment not only relieves stress but can also be a great source of happiness. While games have always been a great source of entertainment the mediums through which they are delivered and consumed have created a snowball effect over the years. As much as 64% of the general population in the U.S. alone consists of avid gamers, and the global gaming market is expected to touch a whopping $90 billion by 2020. Now, those are massive numbers.

Most gamers are passionate about the games they play. However, their loyalty should never be taken for granted by gaming companies. Their passion towards the game typically leads them to have a shorter “fuse” than most other types of consumers. The other dynamic, unique to this industry is that a very miniscule percentage of customers drive the vast majority of revenue, making churn significantly more painful. So, what needs to be done, not just to keep them happy, but also to maintain a perennial flow of revenue?

Here are some of the fundamentals that may appear to be borrowed from the software industry but can be applied to the gaming vertical as well.

Identifying the differentiators
As the gaming industry keeps growing, it’s also turning highly competitive. As there is little to choose between competitors on factors like graphics, soundtracks, and cost, the ability to provide personalized and in-game service to players is turning out to be an essential differentiator. The ideal way to keep the players loyal is to keep them delighted, which can be achieved through a mix of exceptional customer service and analytics-driven insights about players.

Many gaming companies now realize the real value of customer service and player analytics. Bringing this together can provide gaming companies with a substantial competitive advantage, offering substantial returns on the investment. While increasing competition makes it difficult for gaming firms to persuade new players to spend money on subscriptions, it is much easier to monetize in-game services. Additionally, player analytics can be used in tandem to identify the insights that could add value to player journeys and prompt them into making micro-purchases.

Adding value to the subscriber base
Here are six key reasons on the customer service front that can be useful for gaming providers looking to add value to their subscribers:

1. Advocates & Gamers as support agents

Hiring locally sourced seasoned gamers as support agents to boost engagement

Troubleshooting a mid-game issue can be annoying for players. So, when they approach customer service, they expect a quick fix to their issue. However, if they are forced to explain their problem to someone who doesn’t understand them, it can quickly add to their frustration. Having seasoned gamers and game advocates as support agents, allows players to communicate their issues in gaming lingo and receive empathetic experiences. It would reduce the customer’s effort and create an endearing relationship.

2. Multi-lingual support

Timely support in multiple languages that is active round the clock

Most games transcend geographical barriers and are played by people speaking different languages. While the instructions are usually available in multiple languages, it is also essential for gaming firms to offer timely support to gamers in their language. Also, it is vital to have a service team that is active 24/7, catering to customers from different time zones.

3. Support beyond traditional channels

Omnichannel support and in-game service options to enhance the gaming experience

While most PC gamers are technically skilled and like fixing their problems themselves by looking for support on the developer’s website or community forums, console game players usually prefer having quick and easy access to customer support without having to leave their games. This requires gaming firms to have omnichannel support that caters to the demands of their target audience across multiple touch-points. An omnichannel support strategy for gaming firms should go beyond traditional channels like email, chat, and call, to include in-game service options, active support on thriving gaming community forums, social media support, and mobile support to deliver exceptional player experiences.

4. AI-driven interactive player support

Automated interactive solutions such as virtual assistants to simplify interactions

While most customers prefer interacting with humans when they approach customer service, integrating virtual assistants across channels with support services has its benefits for gaming studios. Apart from helping provide prompt service to gamers, they can also bring down the operational cost while providing quick, round-the-clock access to support. A one-to-one real-time conversation that offers personalized attention to players can be quite useful in keeping the players engaged.

5. AI-driven player analytics

Relevant analytics to identify compelling insights about players

To keep their subscribers fascinated, gaming studios must keep pushing the fun factor in their games. This means, they constantly need to identify the gaps and improve the overall gaming experience, and AI-driven analytics is the ideal means to achieve it. Using player analytics, gaming studios can track the behavioral patterns of the players and use machine learning algorithms to spot emerging trends, which in turn can be utilized to improve game development and keep ahead of the competition.

6. Efficient Feedback Mechanism

Efficient feedback platform to tap player-reviews and opinions

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.

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