Data & AI to keep the world running | Tech Mahindra

Data & AI to keep the world running

Our CEO, CP Gurnani, mentioned in one of the calls that the need of the hour was for War Time Generals and not Peace Time Generals, and he could not have put it better. We need to work with fewer resources and produce greater results. We need to respond contingently and build solutions that are safer and can handle future adversities. The speed with which we (the entire world as a human race) responded to the COVID-19 pandemic was below par since we underestimated the severity and were unprepared for a problem of this scale.

In the IT sector, we are luckier compared to people in other sectors. Considering the privilege that we have, we need to act responsibly towards businesses and to society. With my experience in the IT sector and specifically in Data & Analytics, I can think of a few ways in which we can help from a technology standpoint. Here are a few examples:

  • Faster and easier access to relevant information. This is especially crucial to the healthcare systems, from equipment inventory to vaccine development. We are humbled to have the opportunity of being a part of AarogyaSetu, an app that tracks the COVID cases in India.
  • The development should be augmented by Deep Learning and ML, leading to faster analysis and summarization. AI will be deeply embedded in all processes, not as a separate business.
  • AI and ML assets have to be taken more seriously and the management of it should be centralized, yet democratized. This approach will save the resources, propel collective wisdom and cooperation. TechM has been championing this via our GAiA platform.
  • Data Exchange should be made easy, considering that the technology necessary for it is already available. A single source of information stored at one place is the key instead of creating multiple copies of data thereby risking data integrity. This will improve the resource and computing utilization exponentially. For information sharing, we should avoid making multiple copies whether it is B2B or B2C.
  • With increased Security on the cloud, the need of the hour is to move information to the cloud. This will help organizations in controlling costs, time to market, and providing flexibility in managing infrastructure. With cloud infrastructure, organizations will be able to focus on their core business segments.
  • Digitization of Information should take rapidly for the assets – Contracts, Forms, Drawings etc. We are working with a few customers to help them digitize their information, identify leakages and build robust processes to avoid leakages. This makes their processes simpler and better.

While the above initiatives will save a lot of resources, everything will be questioned in the post COIVD era. One of the very interesting discussions evolving is - Do we really need so much of Security for every process? How do we redefine Security, which is most important but also most appropriate? Do we need the physical infrastructure that we currently have if the associates can work from home seamlessly? We are working closely with our clientele to help their businesses transition into a work from home friendly organization with a host of our COVID offerings.

The situation we have today is unprecedented and is something comparable to World War II. As an inherent optimist, I believe that we, as the human race with technology, will fight the pandemic with restraint and evolve. With the news that clinical trials are starting soon, I hope to meet a lot more people sooner than later. We will recover faster than ever in a post COVID world to get back to the old normal but with a conscience.

About the Author
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Dr. Satish Pai
SVP and Business Head, Americas

Two decades of experience in Technology and Pharmaceutical sectors; a business leader who has conceptualized large deals and grown business in various geographies. Currently leading the SBU and P&L of a portfolio of $1Bn+ revenue across Americas (US, Canada, Caribbean and LATAM)