Jigyasa 2018: “Data Visualization and Analytics”: Ms. Nisha Sullia, Senior Project Manager, Gramener

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On 14th January, Ms. Sullia engaged the students of TAPMI in an invigorating discussion on Analytics. Emphasizing on how colors, representation and shapes play an important role in organizing data, she said understanding how to extract information and reading data is as important as collecting it.

“It is imperative to spend time with data to come to a conclusion and derive information”, she said, “The main visualization challenge is in deciding what we want to extract from the available structured or unstructured data. Florence Nightingale used Data visualize to depict the number of deaths during wars. We can also similarly extract many details out of data once we know what we are looking for and then decipher it correctly”.

She talked about Audience, Data and Author as the three components of designing data visualization. Analysis, Info-graphics and Data Art help in interacting between these components. We start by methods to Expose Data and Show Data. These are low effort techniques to know what is our data and what is happening with it. After this we move to Explore Data and Explain Data which require more efforts because we try to analyze the impact and relationship inside the data. We try to decipher why is the phenomenon happening.

Ms. Sullia shared various data sets and cases which left the students awed at the huge application of Data Analytics and Visualization in today’s world. Be it the class X mark of students or the variance of number of births on various calendar days Data Visualization and Analytics finds its way into all domains.

She moved on to talk about Advanced Analytics. This can be descriptive (analyzing portfolio performance of stores, partners and product mix), diagnostic (energy utility to study losses and gains), predictive (employee churn ratio of banks), and prescriptive (using heuristics to analyze data).

The two approaches to decision making Business-Driven approach or Data-Driven approach. The organization is based on business requirement which in turn involves factors like regions, types of market. Ms. Sullia concluded the interesting session by emphasizing the importance of data in today’s world and how the representation and stories that are formulated around that data are equally necessary.

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Jigyasa 2018: Guest Lecture – “Industrial IoT and Analytics” by Mr. Manu Singh, Process Consultant, Infosys Technologies Ltd

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On 14th Jan 2018, Mr. Manu Singh gave a talk on the topic ‘Industrial IoT and Analytics’, as part of the inaugural edition of Jigyasa 2018 – The Annual IT and Analytics Conclave of TAPMI. The session started with Mr. Singh asking the audience a question – “How old is data science?”. Mr. Singh stated that data mining is in practice even prior to the time of humans. Anything which is of value to human being, he counts it. Mr. Singh then presented the audience with the timeline of Industrial Revolution. We’ve had, so far, three industrial revolutions and the fourth one will be about Cyber-Physical Systems.  Mr. Singh said that the 1st revolution had humans talking and machine listening, the 2nd one had humans and machines talking, the 3rd one had machines talking while humans listening and the 4th one will have machine-machine interaction without any human intervention.

Mr. Singh went on to explain what Internet of Things (IoT) and Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) are and gave a brief comparison between the two. According to Mr. Singh, IIoT has been around for the past 15 years. But it will take another 15 years for it to reach its full potential. Since IIoT mainly involves server-server interfacing, the chances of human error are very less. The major drivers for IIoT are Cloud Computing, Big Data analysis, Standardisation of IPV6 and Intelligent Machines. Mr. Singh also demonstrated the various advantages of IIoT which includes but not limited to efficiency, new economic value and quality of life. He also showed the audience a blue print of how a smart city will look like with the implementation of Internet of Everything (IoE), which basically means ‘connecting the unconnected’.

During the second half of his talk, Mr. Singh explained that there are mainly three market segments for IoT, namely consumer, commercial and industrial and the major solution areas of IoT range from manufacturing plants to oil and gas and heavy machinery. He also talked about the building blocks that makes up an IoT system. Mr. Singh also provided examples to show the application of IIoT in manufacturing, oil and gas, cloud computing and health care, to name a few.

Mr. Singh concluded his talk by stating that creating value from IoT requires both organizational and technical alignment. The issues in organisational field like vision, preparedness and execution and in the Technical field like data quality & completeness, heterogeneity of data sources and technology architecture will have implications for data science approaches and their effectiveness and the following outcomes are non-trivial. These impacts include longer time to realisation of value, model accuracy issues and limited applicability of results, to name a few.

Overall, it was a very informative and interactive session. Mr. Singh encouraged the students to ask questions and he made sure that none of their queries went unanswered.

CXO Leadership Series, 2017- Governance and Culture: Making digital transformation successful- Mr. Aashish Chandorkar, Country Head, Capgemini Consulting

Aashish-5In another informative session of the CXO Leadership series on 24 October 2017, Mr. Aashish Chadorkar discussed with the students, how digitalization has affected every industry in the recent years. Today, every company is in the process of Digital transformation, but sometimes very large and well-established companies find it a little difficult to adapt. He then talked about the two pillars of Digital Transformation, i.e., Governance and Culture, that can make the transformation easier and smoother.

Mr. Chandorkar talked about different aspects of Governance and Culture that a company should work on to make this transformation successful. He gave examples of companies like GE, VOLVO, Starbucks, Nestle, Walmart etc. who have digitalized some of their operations and been very successful. It takes time for a company to transform digitally, especially if it is a large company and the employees of the older generation take more time adjusting with this transformation. So, this transformation is a long and continuous process.

He also talked about the different hurdles to digital transformation and innovation and how they can be overcome by setting clear visions, investing in digital skills, making cultural changes in the organizations and empowering employees. A company where employees bring in digital innovation generally tend to be more successful than those where the company tries to drive the innovation.

He quoted “Cultural Transformation is not a one-time exercise but a constantly evolving process!”. He then answered the queries of students before ending the session. The session was very interactive and the students understood the importance of being updated with latest digital trends in the corporate world.

“Current Trends in IT Industry”- Mr Sumeet Minocha, Integrated Services Leader, India BU, Wipro Limited

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On 25th September, in an interactive and insightful session with students, Mr Sumeet Minocha talked about the new trends that are shaping the IT industry today. Technologies like Machine learning, Artificial intelligence are completely reshaping the business landscape.  Adding to this, a concept like SMAC, the synergy of Social, Mobility, Analytics and Cloud is driving business innovation and helping organizations improve their operations and target customers more effectively. Today every company is coming up with its own digital strategy. Digital is fundamentally shifting the competitive landscape in many industries and sectors. Companies now need to take critical decisions on how to address digitization. The concept of Digital is all about removing redundancy so that when a company applies SMAC, it is able to achieve the most optimised process. He also spoke about the situation when an organisation struggles from a linear growth stack. In this situation, a company needs to focus on non-linear growth and this is where IT companies are focusing and turning their attention to.

Further, Mr Sumeet spoke about the differences between an IT service company and a product company. Unlike an IT service company, a product company focuses just on the innovation of a product that it deals with, and tries to anticipate the future of the same. However, with the passage of time the space between the IT product and IT Service Company is collapsing. Also, gaining momentum in the IT industry is the concept of Solution Architect which is a combination of both Functional and Technical requirements. Therefore, technology is helping organizations to reach to an unlimited audience by increasing the penetration and reach. Social media has turned out to be a mandate for all organisations today. It is the most important area of focus and has become instrumental for businesses in shaping the consumer decisions. The usability of social media has grown exponentially, providing businesses with an immense scope for increasing customer engagement. Another impact of technology is that gradually every routine job that had a step by step fixed procedure is being entirely replaced by automation and in future, only those jobs which require strategic decision-making will require human intervention.

Towards the end of the lecture, he advised students who have an IT background to connect their experience to the big picture. Only then can the students justify the validity of their experience. Students should also ensure that they join a company which provides them with both operational and strategic experience. In this era of internet, there is an information overload around us. Therefore, he advised students to have a learning attitude and to constantly evaluate whether what they know is just information or has been interpreted to knowledge and wisdom.

 

Consulting – A practitioner’s perspective – Mr. Mohan Kancharla

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Mr. Mohan Kancharla, started his lecture with consultant’s dilemma about what customers want.  He described consultant as a professional who provides advice in a particular domain or area of expertise. Consulting is advisory service aimed at leading transformation and creation of value for customers in the context of their business environment. In consulting, needs of Client, Consultant and Customer should be understood and maintained. The consulting process is a three-legged stool, must always be in balance. Consulting is challenging the assumptions. He advised “You will always be suspect, if you have all the answers, you will always be powerful by having the right questions. The bottom line of consulting is having no answer unquestioned”.

He talked about consulting space which has Level of organisation maturity, individual competency as X axis and complexity of consulting offering engagement execution as Y axis. He then mapped types of consulting like IT consulting, Operation consulting, Functional Consulting, Strategy Consulting and Business Consulting in this space.

He differentiated consulting firms like McKinsey, BCG as strategy consulting, Deloitte, KPMG, PWC, IBM, E&Y, Accenture as business consulting and TCS, CTS, Infosys as Technology consulting. He also described consulting as a cyclic process with the steps of understanding context, asses current state, define target state, analyse gap, evaluate solution option and finally recommendation and report.

He talked about different consulting segments. IT Strategy Consulting is defining the road map for IT, that is aligned to business elaborating upon the direction for the organisation, architecture, infrastructure. IT Architectural Consulting is defining the business architecture and deriving the application, information and technology architecture that are modular as well as coupled.IT Portfolio Consulting is the rationalisation of application, consolidation of infrastructure and optimisation of investments targeted towards operation excellence. IT Process Consulting is providing direction for the process to achieve IT service improvement and business objectives.IT Governance Consulting is defining the governance structure mechanisms processes and measures that would best enable IT to support the business. IT Infrastructure Consulting is optimising the utilisation infrastructure ecosystem, compromising of data-centre, service management plus investments. IT Outsourcing Consulting is evaluating the right selection of a model or location or vendor for outsourcing. IT Transformation Consulting is enabling the enterprise to realise its vision through implementation of strategic direction provided for consulting segment.

He concluded his lecture describing different consulting competencies, consulting skills, consulting sales, consulting proposals, consulting teams, consulting delivery, consulting presentation, consulting report, consulting measures and consulting career.

“What does it take to win IT and Engineering Outsourcing Business?” – Mr. Rajan Bedi, Head Presales, HiTech and Communications Engineering Services at HCL Technologies

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An interactive session by Mr. Rajan Bedi, Head Presales, HiTech and Communications Engineering Services at HCL Technologies began with him talking about a case study and how fortune 500 companies are structured Globally and What it takes for such a company to turnaround and be profitable using classical business and IT Levers including outsourcing.

He involved the students in a role play by giving various CXO designations to them and gave them a mandate to turnaround a company. This helped the students relate to how a new CEO would have to turnaround a company and the various stages involved, right from a board meeting to hiring a consultant, Business Case Creation and the Journey of selecting an outsourcing service provider.

Mr. Rajan then highlighted how external consultants create, analyze a business case and suggest cost reductions. He then spoke about some of the processes in IT outsourcing sales and presales which involve account mapping, RFP Response, proposal defense, client visit, Deal closure cross-selling and relationship building with clients.

The role play based case study helped the audience to understand the above and actively participate and think through on what it takes to win IT and Engineering Outsourcing Business.

He concluded by speaking about how new trends in IT and Engineering Industry like IoT is contributing to the asset value chain and the four segments that IoT is going to have the highest impact on are manufacturing, healthcare, utilities and logistics.

Consulting – Overview and Problem Definition by Mr. Girish Shetty, Director, Consulting-Healthcare, Cognizant Business Consulting

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Consulting is one of the most sought after professions these days, which is growing in popularity not only among the seasoned industry professionals, but even among the fresh B-School graduates.

TAPMI, on the 31st of July, 2014 organised a Guest Lecture by Mr. Girish Shetty, the Director of Consulting -Healthcare at Cognizant Business Consulting, intended at giving the bright young TAPMI students an overview of the consulting world – what it involves and what it requires. The GL was delivered via video conference.

Mr. Girish Shetty is an MBA graduate from the University of Louisville, specializing in Entrepreneurial and Small Business Operations. A seasoned professional with extensive experience as a consultant in the Healthcare domain, he had a lot to share with the students.

Mr. Shetty started off by giving an account of the evolution of consulting. Today, consulting has shifted from a pure advisory role to an implementation role i.e. the consultant’s role does not end with just giving the solution, the solution needs to be implemented as well. Another interesting aspect is the integration of consulting with technology and outsourcing in the modern world. Also, today, consultants are expected to be partners in innovation i.e. they are expected to be abreast of the latest technologies (for example – analytics, cloud computing, and mobility), so that they can help the client leverage these effectively. The final point in this regard was about the rise of asset based consulting, which is a departure from the traditional knowledge based consulting.

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Mr. Shetty now delved upon some of the traits of a consultant. He emphasized that a consultant is a professional, a problem solver, has superb communication skills and is a consensus builder. The consultant is a high energy individual who has the ability to deal with ambiguity and moving targets. He also stressed upon the importance of relationships and networking for a consultant.

According to Mr. Shetty, there are four types of consulting, broadly. Strategy consulting, which deals with top line and long term issues; Strategy/Operations consulting, which deals with cost cutting and the bottom line; Domain/Functional consulting, which deals with specific functions or domains and Technology consulting, which specifically focuses on the latest technological advancements.

At this juncture, he also pointed out that consultants are hired by people at various organisational levels for different purposes. For example, a CEO would hire a consultant for help with transforming the business or coming up with a new Business Model or paradigm. A functional Vice President on the other hand would hire a consultant to say, increase the efficiency of the functional business processes.

Mr. Shetty now ventured to briefly explain the consulting process, which he divided into two sub-processes, the selling process and the engagement execution process. The former deals with the selling aspect: identifying a problem, getting a Request for Proposal (RFP) and arriving at a proposal that the client approves. The latter deals with consulting engagement and solution hand over. Mr. Shetty also explained the consulting life cycle. A key point according to him is the importance of keeping a back-up plan. “Never have only one solution” is what he said to the TAPMIans. He also highlighted the importance of creating an implementation roadmap.

Mr. Shetty now talked about Problem Identification. According to him, there are five dimensions to keep in mind in this stage: Substance or identity, organisation or physical location (where is the effect of the problem), problem ownership (whose problem), absolute and relative ownership and the time perspective. He also spent some time on explaining the typical pitfalls in problem identification, an example being the tendency to confuse the symptoms with the problem, or the tendency to jump to conclusions in this stage.

The session concluded with an elaborate Q and A session. Mr. Shetty answered all of the many questions posed by the students with real life examples from his own experience. When asked about what is the biggest challenge for consultancy companies in the Healthcare domain, he replied that the main issue is concerns about data privacy. Unlike traditional sectors, in healthcare, some of the data is personal information about patients which has privacy issues. Another aspect he highlighted was the interplay between cost cutting and patients. Here, cost cutting has to be done after a lot of thought as patients’ lives are involved. He also talked about the role of analytics in Healthcare at this point.

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Mr. Shetty, in response to a question on career paths in consultancy also explained the progression from analyst to consultant to manager (consulting) to principal to partner: what are the roles and responsibilities at each of these levels.

Mr. Shetty concluded the lecture to rousing applause from the TAPMI students.