The need of the hour is digital acceleration, to zoom past the current crisis
Filing tax returns just a few years ago was a tedious task ridden with human errors. The Income Tax Department of India approached us at a stage when almost all returns were being filed manually. We picked up from there, digitized the entire process from sorting to certification to stamping. Today, an overwhelming majority of tax and returns are filed electronically, cutting down the processing time by almost 80%.
The integration of data analytics & artificial intelligence, allows the department to pre-fill the returns with available information for the ease of the taxpayers in India. Tax filing today is a breeze with minimal to zero human error.
Digital transformation allowed us to iron out all legacy bottlenecks of income tax filing within a short period. The motive here wasn’t saving costs alone. The more glaring advantages of going truly digital are better client outreach, better employee engagement, superior customer experience, and fool-proof digital security. The agenda for digitization has thus widened from being just a cost-saver to be a growth enabler for organizations, integrating three main factors of achieving resilience - technology, business model, and people (clients & employees).
Leading by example
The need for resilient organizations directly relates to the need for digital acceleration. At the core of this transformation is 360-degree visibility of customer journeys. The world’s largest humanitarian organization and the winner of the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize - the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) is also embracing predictive technologies to understand its beneficiaries better. That in turn allows the organization to predict affected populations and create customized relief packages for disaster prevention.
The WFP leverages a next-generation monitoring system called Hunger Map LIVE, built on Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and data analytics. The system tracks the current levels of hunger in more than 90 countries, and also predicts the future severity of the problem in near real-time. It collects and analyses datasets using advanced data visualization tools. As an actionable insight, the analysis helps WFP track the progress of programs and identify trends early on for better decision making and quick responses to crises. In some pockets, the organization is also using Blockchain to improve the user experience of refugees. They can buy groceries from local shops using iris scans, instead of cash.
There’s no reason why a similar commitment to technology cannot be replicated in a corporate set up. And rightly so, the focus for all industries, in general, has now broadened beyond cost savings to achieve technology innovation at the scale of WFP.
As demand increases, we are ready with a digital framework for clients and have built a pentagon of 5 dimensions for digital businesses:
- Deliver actionable Insights through advanced analytics, big data, reporting and visualization services, and AI-led services such as MDM and point solutions
- Innovate to enhance effectiveness through our vertical platforms, IoT, and digital product engineerings such as BPaaS solutions and point solutions
- Accelerate the digital experience through RPA, cloud migration, legacy modernization, and digital system integration
- Assure compliance through services such as cybersecurity monitoring, business risk, and GDPR monitoring
- Redefine end-user Experience through digital CX, tech-enablement, point solutions, and digital studio services
The crux of it…
The aim is to modernize the core systems of enterprises and build a digital infrastructure that enables companies to listen to their users, learn about them, and leverage it to speed up decision-making with minimal intervention. Digital transformation is not just about the deployment of digital assets, but driving business outcomes with tech innovation and out-of-the-box solutions.
From people’s perspective, digital transformation is a valuable asset to create and hone relevant talent pools, especially while localizing in key markets, aiding in targeted re-skilling of employees to move into data or cloud.
The pandemic has also made it clear that businesses need to be nimble in moving assets and capabilities across projects as and when required. Integrating digital processes at the core with advanced cognitive automation backed by Natural Language Processing (NLP) is the desired approach and a far-sighted one. As a Business Process Management company, this falls right into our ambit. The majority of services we offer are core and essential to businesses. Digital, which has been one of the most important verticals for us in the past few years, both in terms of delivery and growth, is now being plugged across the core services we offer. Clients too are much more flexible in adopting new operating models, especially the ones that are outcome-based and are powered by next-gen technologies such as AI and analytics.
The adoption of Cloud has accelerated as a result, along with virtualization and NLP. AI combined with analytics is helping businesses organize supply chains, predict business needs in real-time, rationalize product lines, and design iron-safe security modules. Advanced analytics is helping several industries adjust production volumes as and when the demand flows, decreasing delinquencies, and aiding inventory optimization.
The business use for digital acceleration is easy to argue for when its benefits accrue far beyond the KPIs. However, the more pressing need to prioritize it now is to go where the demand is going. The pandemic has expanded our appetite for digital transformation, pushing us ahead of the curve by at least 5 years. Now is the time to see if we have leveraged the situation enough to stay ahead of the curve. I rest my case.