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Intelligent Operations: Fast-track to future-ready performance

Digital disruption, data explosion, and customer experience are the driving forces behind the need for companies to transform how they do business and move towards more Intelligent Operations. (Shutterstock)Premium
Digital disruption, data explosion, and customer experience are the driving forces behind the need for companies to transform how they do business and move towards more Intelligent Operations. (Shutterstock)

Today, traditional operations and business process outsourcing services are being reinvented through more intelligent workflows, specialized talent and digital capabilities. For those looking to work in this arena, the opportunities are many and the learning curve is well worth the effort.

India is at an exciting juncture. With a significant and growing tech-savvy consumer base, a young digital-native workforce, and a thriving start-up ecosystem that is fueling innovation, the digital transformation story looks promising. Non-linear inflection of technology, growth of new operating models, and a young workforce that is quick to adapt to changes—the country is becoming a hub for "future-ready businesses".

These ‘future-ready" businesses have doubled-down on digital transformation and retooled operating models for a new age of work. They transform how work gets done by using rich data for decision-making, augmenting people with technology and employing agile workforce models supported by machine intelligence.

Manish Sharma, Group Chief Executive, Accenture Operations
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Manish Sharma, Group Chief Executive, Accenture Operations

“Future-ready leaders understand that it is about maximizing talent in an era when people are critical to success," added Manish Sharma, group chief executive of Accenture Operations.

This transformation signals a growing need for the integration of Intelligent Operations that make business processes more efficient. Along with in-house capabilities, a reliable partner ecosystem can go a long way in helping organizations grow at an accelerated pace. Outsourcing of business processes, which can be handled more swiftly by a BPM partner, has been adopted by many successful businesses.

Thousands of companies fail to make data-driven business decisions because they lack the right information, processes, digital tools and most importantly — talent. In today's competitive environment, this can mean the difference between success and failure. To achieve a step change in business operations performance, organizations need to integrate business process expertise, technology transformation, and talent. Digital disruption, data explosion, and customer experience are the driving forces behind the need for companies to transform how they do business and move towards more Intelligent Operations.

Why do we need Intelligent Operations?

In an increasingly disruptive and complex world, change comes quickly, often without warning and from unexpected places. Today, traditional operations and business process outsourcing services are being reinvented through more intelligent workflows using deep tech including automation, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud, and other emerging technologies.

Stakeholder expectations including that of end-clients, suppliers, partners, and employees are transcending traditional industry boundaries. Today’s best practices are turning into tomorrow’s liabilities in the blink of an eye. What companies have traditionally relied on to improve performance, process optimization, cost reduction, and predictability simply can’t deliver what’s needed to maintain, share, and grow the next generation of customers. A modern enterprise must be able to act quickly in a dynamic landscape.

For those looking to work in this arena, the opportunities are many and the learning curve is well worth the effort.

Industries disrupted by business intelligence

Data-driven decision making and applied intelligence will soon become all-pervasive, impacting almost every sector. A lot of Indian industries are experiencing major disruptions driven by Intelligent Operations. Any enterprise belonging to these sectors cannot rely on legacy systems and traditional processes in order to stay relevant. Let’s take a closer look:

Financial services

The past decade has seen the Indian finance and banking sectors increasingly implementing intelligent processes to improve their operational efficiency. As more and more transactions go digital, banks are looking for solutions driven by cloud for storage, AI, and automation. This can help in faster resolution and decision-making.

Strategic finance

Finance functions across industries have also been one of the first beneficiaries of intelligent operations. Harnessing data from various stakeholder touchpoints, and assimilating them to derive smart business insights, could lead to breakthrough business strategies.

Insurance

Customer experience is a key element for any insurance product. Paperless and quick buying process, along with hassle-free claims, is a mandate for any progressive insurance player. If employees are equipped with a comprehensive history of a customer’s interactions, they are able to provide more value to the end-customer.

Digital marketing

‘Marketing’ had been trying to put up with vague, inaccurate ROI measures for a long time. With the advent of digital marketing, this was no more the case. The more data you have, the better you can target and the better conversions you can expect. Instead of guess work, Intelligent Operations can transform digital marketing into simple math, with measurable outcomes.

Pharma

The pharma industry has a lot riding on it, considering how the whole world is looking at the industry for reliable solutions for the pandemic. From high-frequency clinical trials to intensive research, a lot can now be achieved in a few days or sometimes even hours with the help of AI-driven processes and advanced analytics. This leads to an increased success rate while reducing operational costs.

How do we achieve Intelligent Operations?

Since knowledge workers rely on a seamless flow of information, cloud has become a part and parcel of an industry ecosystem of services that were previously unimaginable.
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Since knowledge workers rely on a seamless flow of information, cloud has become a part and parcel of an industry ecosystem of services that were previously unimaginable. (Shutterstock)

We found future-ready leaders do SIX THINGS radically different:

1. They think big and go beyond incremental change. The world needs visionaries who can take decisions today that will be relevant for tomorrow. They help their enterprises to become more mature. They consider the bold moves they would have to take to close the gap between their aspirations and their current set-up.

2. They put cloud infrastructure at core. Since knowledge workers rely on a seamless flow of information, cloud has become a part and parcel of an industry ecosystem of services that were previously unimaginable. From allowing ‘work from anywhere’ to providing transparency across departments to creating common platforms for collaboration, businesses can benefit from cloud migration in several ways.

3. They enhance intuition with better, more diverse data. Critical thinking and problem-solving are the backbone of an enterprise and enhancing intuition with better, more diverse data translates into employee productivity.

4. They automate at scale. Future-ready operations have to be implemented at scale to realize the real impact of technology. By scaling automation, AI, and integrated solutions with leading practices, they are able to help their organizations achieve much more in less time, making them the frontrunners in a world governed by change.

5. They foster a specialized workforce. Employees are a company’s internal customers. Intelligent HR operations solutions can help elevate employee experience and build retention, productivity, and employee engagement across all levels. It is also important to augment the workforce with the right technologies for them to be able to achieve maximum productivity. Real-time insights backed by AI and ML can lend extraordinary predictive superpowers to your teams, increase operational efficiency, and help achieve business goals.

6. They build complementary ecosystem relationships. Symbiotic relationships are crucial for the success of future-ready organizations. The possibilities of co-innovation are immense and to be able to access these, intelligent organizations are building smart partnership ecosystems.

A successful enterprise needs to have a three-pronged strategy: delivering better customer experiences, improving organizational productivity, and staying relevant by staying competitive. Intelligent Operations is the fuel for all. And this is what will differentiate the ones that stay alive and kicking from the ones that disappear in the coming decades.

For those wanting to advance their careers, Intelligent Operations is one of the most promising fields to be in.

Work at the heart of Change. Explore Operations careers at Accenture.

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