What if… Breakthroughs That Could Reshape the Global Services Landscape | Sherpas in Blue Shirts

Posted On June 21, 2011

A response to my recent blog – Innovation Junkies – One for your ‘Bucket List’ – posed a question that warrants more than a one-liner follow-up. Thus, I hope that readers will dive in and share their ideas to help answer the question, “What is a breakthrough invention you’d like to see in global services?”

To get things started, I polled a number of my colleagues and it was abundantly clear there are several lenses through which to view this question. Some immediately proceeded down an efficiency path, discussing ideas that would either drive productivity through the roof, or eliminate labor altogether. Others took the fork in the road that might lead to step function improvements in effectiveness, i.e., innovations that would make the service experience more satisfying. Interestingly, these thoughts raised a number of intense discussions about experiences that were graded high due to a satisfying interaction but that actually had less than complete solutions resolved during the service “event.”

Inventions that could/would have a profound impact may even be hard to describe until they have happened. However, some of the ideas that emerged are worth noting – as much as thought-starters as candidates for the kind of breakthrough innovations in global services that reshape the landscape:

  • IT services
    • Real-time, dynamic hybrid cloud IT infrastructure. What if CIOs could manage their server environments at mainframe-type utilization levels, dynamically shifting peak loads to low-cost cloud infrastructure services?
    • Error-free automatic conversion of old code into modern languages. What if automated tools could instantly translate old code bases into the most advanced modern languages that provide superior performance and flexibility advantages with 100 percent accuracy?
  • Document-based BPO
    • Zero defect OCR. What if optical character recognition could decipher any written document in any format (unstructured data) and prepare the data for use by relevant applications?
    • Device independent self-service data input. What if services recipients could enter all needed data on any device, from anywhere, for any process?
    • Ultra-low cost exception handling. What if exceptions that currently require costly human intervention could be resolved by solutions that cost several orders of magnitude less?
  • Voice-based BPO
    • Real-time, 100 percent accurate voice translation. What if language barriers were eliminated due to an ability to translate both inbound and outbound communications into a universally understandable form?
    • Real-time, dynamic matching to customer preference. What if customers could be matched to service providers that align perfectly with their unique preferences?
  • Knowledge-based BPO
    • Crowdsourcing-based knowledge transfer/training. What if the comprehensive experience of those familiar with an activity could be harnessed to train users/service providers in a fraction of the time and cost?
    • Predictive solutioning for customer interactions. What if services shifted from being based on reactions to historical artifacts to being able to craft services in advance of a recipient’s needs based on highly accurate predicted outcomes?

Now that we’ve got you thinking…what are your visionary what ifs?


See related article on Global Delivery Report, Global Services Breakthroughs Wanted: Providers Take Note

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