Monthly Archives

September 2018

Infosys Bags $1 Billion Deals from Verizon and Microsoft: All You Need to Know | In the News

By | In The News

Infosys has won two IT outsourcing deals adding up to over $1 billion in the past two months, signalling an improvement in business under CEO Salil Parekh, who took over at the beginning of the year.

Jimit Arora, who leads US-based advisory Everest Group’s IT services research practice, said the new strategy set in place by Parekh has helped create a shared vision for success and aligned the company with what the market wants today – digital at speed, IT modernisation, and access to specialized talent at scale.

Read more in Gadgets Now

How to Drive Alignment with Your Service Provider in Implementing Digital Technologies | Sherpas in Blue Shirts

By | Sherpas in Blue Shirts

Companies are on the horns of a dilemma. They signed long-term, managed service contracts for IT or business processes, which took advantage of the savings from labor arbitrage. But now they find that there is significant potential to leverage the new suite of digital technologies that promise improved performance and lower cost. The problem is that that their incumbent service providers often actively resist implementing these technologies, using delaying and obviation tactics, refusing to pass on the savings and/or demanding additional work or other concessions in return for complying. Now that I’ve identified this major issue that many companies face today, let’s look at how they handle this non-alignment situation.

Read more in my blog on CIO

Artificial Intelligence without the Hype: The Real Role of AI in Business Today | In the News

By | In The News

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has been the stuff of science fiction for decades and more recently has become a rampant buzzword in business media headlines. But CIOs need to know if there are realities amid the hype. Is AI actually delivering value and not just Proofs of Concept? In other words, are the business bona fides showing up yet?

Click to read the full article

Also available online at Applications Europe Magazine

Investing Big in RPA is Not a Fool’s Game | Sherpas in Blue Shirts

By | Sherpas in Blue Shirts

The news of another big round of funding for UiPath, US$225 million series C, and a valuation of US$3 billion created a lot of excitement and amazement in the market. It followed on from Automation Anywhere’s whopping series A funding round of US$250 million in July, which valued the company at US$1.8 billion, and which surpassed UiPath’s earlier series B funding of US$153 million and a valuation of US$1 billion in Q1 2018.

These valuations are phenomenal. In UiPath’s case, the rise from US$1 billion to US$3 billion in less than six months is, I believe, unprecedented. You might think that investors are living on a different planet than us ordinary folks, and that this kind of valuation is plain wrong. I beg to differ.

Investing in the Future of RPA

My case rests on the rapid increase in market adoption and the huge investments that vendors are making in their platforms. As much has already been said about the fast rate of enterprise adoption, there’s no need for me to repeat it again here. Jumping to the second part of my case: RPA today is not the RPA that launched this market three to four years ago. The original developments lacked many of the features that we see today, e.g., computer vision to pick objects on the screen and robust control panels. Similarly, tomorrow’s RPA will be superior to today’s.

As someone who assesses RPA technology on an annual basis, I see a fast rate of product development, not just year on year, but in some cases quarter by quarter.

Everest Group’s “RPA Virtuous Circle” highlights the continuous cycle of developments in the market.

Virtuous Circle w title - Investing in RPA blog

Much has been said of organizations struggling to scale their deployments. I completely agree with this, and for a while I’ve been asking vendors to do something about this issue. I am delighted to see that they have been listening and are investing in features for scaling. These include enhanced robot run time control and management features including intelligent control systems for dynamic workload balancing, auto-scaling, and even identifying processes for further automation. Another major stream of development is turning RPA platforms into the glue that holds together business process management systems (BPMS), different varieties of machine learning, and narrow artificial intelligence. These will ultimately be integrated and will combine seamlessly to provide end-to-end process automation.

While vendors do their bit for scale, organizations should also examine their deployment models for RPA and take a more programmatic approach. Automation is going to be a serious competitive differentiator, and a programmatic approach would significantly speed up organizations’ adoption and realization of desired outcomes. Everest Group’s RPA Pinnacle study highlights some of the approaches that organizations have taken to achieve excellence in RPA.

Of course, these enormous investments in RPA do carry some risks. There is the possibility of tech giants bringing their own RPA solutions to market, in turn pushing out the current RPA vendors. But that wouldn’t be easy to do, as the existing vendors have gained a lot of hard to emulate know how in the past few years. And any one of the existing RPA vendors could be acquired in a major acquisition, but then the investors would get the handsome returns they anticipated…just in a different way.

Taking the Manufacturing Model to Business Processes

Another reason for my optimism about the recent investments in RPA and vendor valuations is that I recently got a glimpse into the future of business automation by looking at manufacturing. On a visit to Siemens Digital, I saw how the concept of digital twin and simulation of manufacturing processes is helping speed up production times and efficiency, even in manual/human processes.

For years, corporate global services functions have attempted to copy manufacturing principles, e.g., adopting Lean and Six Sigma methodologies. Today, they have moved on to automation, which manufacturing adopted decades ago. Having started on automation of global services, enterprises are not going to turn back. They will continue to follow manufacturing’s lead.

Leading organizations are already giving their processes version numbers with supporting documentation, having taken each step through a rigorous Lean Six Sigma methodology.  On the automation front, while the focus has been primarily on tactical needs, it will increasingly move to outcomes and the finished “product,” as in manufacturing.

We will see enterprises develop digital twins of their processes or robots, and run complex functions end-to-end in virtual reality before committing to the final model for deployment in the real world. Future versions of RPA will have to support these requirements, and that is where some of the millions of funding will be spent; on product development and advanced features.

Today’s RPA products are paving the way for a far bigger change in automation of global services than we have seen to date. They are the building blocks of the platforms of the future for an inevitable automation journey that every organization will have to take sooner or later. That is why the current group of vendors are so attractive to investors. They are betting not just on today’s growing revenues, but what is to come.

Contracting for Agile: Lessons From the Trenches in Sourcing Agile Development | Webinar

By | Webinars

Complimentary 60-minute webinar to be held on Thursday, September 27, 2018 | 9 a.m. CDT, 10 a.m. EDT, 3 p.m. BST, 7:30 p.m. IST

VIEW PRESENTATION

Questions we’ll address:

  • Is broad-based adoption of Agile Development real or hype?
  • How does Agile impact the delivery model for outsourced services?
  • How do pricing models need to evolve to capture value from Agile?
  • How do Terms & Conditions for Agile contracts need to change to minimize risk and maximize value?
  • What are some best practices to consider when negotiating and managing Agile contracts?

As frequent delivery and customer satisfaction become the new currencies for IT organizations, a greater number of enterprises are embracing Agile and DevOps methodologies to rapidly deploy useful software. As traditional, Waterfall-based contracts are unable to manage the ambiguity and complexity related to Agile, the increase in Agile adoption is causing sourcing groups to reassess outsourcing contract templates.

Who should attend, and why?
This webinar will provide Strategic Outsourcing & Vendor Management groups with practical insights for structuring and negotiating Agile contracts.

Presenters
Jimit Arora
Partner
Everest Group

Abhishek Sharma
Partner
Everest Group

Moderator
Alan Wolfe
Senior Vice President
Everest Group

ProcureCon Total Talent Management Conference — September 26-27 | Event

By | Events

Research VP Julian Herbert will be a key speaker at ProcureCon Total Talent Management 2018 held on September 26 and 27 in Amsterdam. Julian will lead a session titled “Total Talent Acquisition: a Roadmap for Enterprises” on September 26.

About the event

What started off as 100 people in a room discussing where this sector is headed, has lead to over 5,000 senior-level procurement executives being inspired while learning and developing their company as well as their careers over the past 17 years.

Recently, ProcureCon customers – Procurement leaders from the world’s leading companies – have asked for a dedicated learning and networking platform for their vertical. So, ProcureCon organized the Total Talent Management event.

When

September 26-27, 2018

Where

Novotel
Amsterdam City, Amsterdam

Speaker

Julian Herbert, Vice President, Everest Group

Learn more and register to attend

Enterprise Adoption of Digital Customer Experience (CX) Capabilities Soars, Expected to Grow at 25% CAGR—Everest Group | Press Release

By | Press Releases

Demand for CX services is disrupting the Contact Center Outsourcing market, pitting traditional models based on labor arbitrage and scale with digital-first strategies.

Customer experience (CX) is king, dominating the strategic focus of a growing number of enterprises seeking to build a loyal customer base. These enterprises are taking a digital-first approach, aggressively shopping for service providers with next-generation, digital capabilities that can help them gain in-depth customer understanding, deliver personalized CX and establish highly qualified talent pools for managing CX. According to new research from Everest Group, digital CX, which currently represents 4-6 percent of the overall contact center outsourcing (CCO) market, is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 20-25 percent for the next five years.

“Traditional CCO approaches are rapidly evolving to those focused on delivering customer experience services,” said Skand Bhargava, practice director of Business Process Services at Everest Group. “In fact, the digital outsourcing drivers for enterprises—such as CX consulting, omnichannel platforms and digital capabilities such as automation and analytics solutions—are increasingly becoming more important than in the past. Enterprise buyers expect their service providers to be customer-centric and to provide innovative solutions that can help them meet and exceed the expectations of digital-native customers.”

These findings and more are discussed in “Contact Center Outsourcing Annual Report 2018 – Transforming Customer Experience Through a Digital-First Approach.” This report provides an overview of the CCO market, evolving buyer expectations, market size, adoption trends, key solution characteristics, and the outlook for 2018-2019.

Other key findings:

  • The global contact center spend stands at US$320-350 billion, of which third-party outsourcing accounts for approximately 26 percent. The global CCO market grew at approximately 4 percent in 2017 to reach US$81-83 billion, driven by the growing interest among new buyers for outsourcing and the emerging growth avenues for service providers around consulting and digital CX solutions. The CCO market is expected to grow further at a rate of 4-5 percent to reach US$91-93 billion by 2020.
  • The adoption of chat and social media has increased significantly over the past two years, compared to email and voice; chat has become the most preferred channel among millennials.
  • Robotic process automation (RPA) and rule-based chatbots are increasingly adopted across multiple use cases in contact centers to solve key business problems such as longer average handle time (AHT), average waiting times, and navigating through multiple systems and applications. Artificial intelligence (AI) is largely leveraged to unlock customer insights, predict customer actions, and make personalized recommendations.
  • The operational analytics solutions such as desktop analytics and agent performance analytics have witnessed high adoption in contact centers. The adoption of business analytics solutions that include customer analytics, sentiment analytics, and Voice of Customer Analytics (VoCA) is expected to increase over the next few years.
  • The delivery model for customer service management (CXM) services is evolving with a balanced mix of onshore, offshore, and nearshore agents, augmented with the Work-at-Home Agent (WAHA) model and next-generation technology solutions. The WAHA model continues to grow in CXM services, with around 93 percent of the total WAHA agents based out of the United States.

Sourcing RPA: Latest Developments and Enterprise Implications | Webinar (Hosted by the New England chapter of IAOP)

By | Webinars

Tuesday, September 25, 2018 | 8 a.m. CDT, 9 a.m. EDT, 2 p.m. BST, 6:30 p.m. IST | Hosted by the New England chapter of IAOP, co-chaired by Foley & Lardner, Sapience, and Everest Group

Register Now

Robotic Process Automation – RPA – is impacting the very way companies do business. Negotiating the right contracts with your RPA software vendor along with your outsourcing service providers is critical.

In this fast-paced, dynamic market, it’s essential that you stay abreast of the latest market and vendor developments to best harness the power of RPA – at the right cost, and with suitable contract terms. And, with everyone touting their “latest thing,” one must be able to separate the hype from the truth.

Our RPA experts will help to light the path. In this 60-minute webinar, we’ll arm you with the following actionable takeaways:
• Vet the underlying RPA software vendors based upon late-breaking market developments
• Understand impacts of the convergence of RPA and AI (and other key automation tools)
• Learn about key contract pricing metrics so you are prepared for deal negotiations
• Tips for managing the implications on your existing outsourcing relationships

Who should attend?
Enterprise executives responsible for outsourcing and vendor management strategy, and professionals who oversee RPA implementation and operations

Presenters
Sarah Burnett
Executive Vice President and Distinguished Analyst
Everest Group

Michel Janssen
Chief Research Guru
Everest Group

 

Does Your Change Management Plan Cut it in the Digital Age? | Sherpas in Blue Shirts

By | Sherpas in Blue Shirts

Traditional change management practices weren’t built for digital transformation. Here’s how to rethink two key aspects of your approach

IT modernization and digital transformation focus on changing a business and creating new value. But investing in new technologies and changing processes do not change a business; they just give a company the ability to change the business. Unfortunately, traditional change-management techniques are not adequate to address the level of change in IT modernization and digital transformation.

Traditional change-management techniques may help a company implement digital technologies, but they won’t enable driving the necessary change to realize the full benefits of the technologies. How can your company determine if its change management plan is effective?

The first step in determining change management effectiveness is understanding that your company is changing its business model. The traditional mindset that change-management tactics will drive success in transformation initiatives understates the immense amount of change and the nature of the change that is required. Managing business model change is far more comprehensive than typical transformation initiatives.

Read more in my blog at The Enterprisers Project

Digital Transformation Reveals Limitations Of Software Packages And SaaS | Sherpas in Blue Shirts

By | Sherpas in Blue Shirts

Most large enterprises were on a journey for the past 30 years where a higher and higher proportion of the core systems driving the enterprises was software packages or software as a service. Traditional wisdom for companies was “don’t build – buy.” Then, again, as companies undertook digital transformation journeys, the prevailing belief was that the best way to do digital transformation is to get there as fast as possible by buying (not building) many components, using third-party software and SaaS products. Now, two disruptive forces are starting to shift the balance between build vs. buy in the IT world.

Read more in my blog on Forbes

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