Great Lakes Institute of Management, Gurgaon, hosted its Annual Management Conclave ‘SAPIENCE 2018’ at its Manesar campus recently. The two day conclave, revolved around the theme of “Relevance and Business Design: Strategizing for the Future” and witnessed 27 eminent industry leaders participating in the panels and discussing the mantras of surviving and thriving in the age of AI, ML & Analytics in the areas of Marketing, HRM, Operations, Finance & Analytics. Mr Pradeep Kashyap, Founder & Chairman Emeritus, MART Global Management Solutions LLP and Mr MVK Mohan, Director, SAP Labs, Singapore were the Keynote Speakers for the conclave.
Delivering the keynote address, Mr Pradeep Kashyap spoke about innovation and relevance of business models for emerging markets. He mentioned that the challenges for innovation are higher in emerging markets as they have limited resources, poor infrastructure and huge heterogonous population. He suggested that to create sustainable and scalable business models in such markets, one has to develop an understanding of the eco-system of different sections of people. Finally, he concluded by quoting, “If you don’t have emotional connect with your consumer, you will not be able to innovate to solve their problems”.
Mr MVK Mohan began by sharing key trends in AI, ML and analytics industry. He shared that, “The world is moving fast in this digital age. AI, ML & Analytics are playing crucial roles in ushering these winds of change and it has the potential to supersede human capabilities in running the businesses. Applications of these technologies can be as simple as smartphone assistants to intelligent surveillance systems to autonomous robots, armed with Artificial Intelligence, powered by Machine Learning and connected by the Internet of Things. What we need to understand is how we will make good use of these to tap immense potential India has in growing in various segments such as manufacturing, agriculture, education, transport, healthcare, and other fields.”
Panel Discussions – First Panel Discussion
The event also witnessed the panel discussions on various topics. The first panel discussion was on the topic “Building Consumer Connect in Emerging Markets”. Giving an overview of the market, consumer behaviour and environment, the panel said that establishing the consumer connect is of vital importance today. Speaking about business strategies, the panel explained the duality of personalized marketing and scalability; to grow in the market, every product and pricing has to be personalized basis the individual customer preference, by understanding them at the unit level. The panel further shared that in today’s choice economy the brand loyalty is suffering and this is where AI, ML and Data Analytics can play a significant role in understanding the shift in the customer preferences. The panel was comprised of Dr Anup Kalra, CEO & Director, Dabur Ayurvet Limited, Mr Zairus Master, CEO, Shine.com, Mr Peeyush Bajpai, Director-Big Data, Nielsen Co., Mr Ranjeet Oak, CBO, Makemytrip.com, Mr Anirban Chaudhuri (Moderator), Professor, Marketing, Great Lakes Institute of Management, Gurgaon.
Second Panel Discussion
The second panel discussion on the topic “Future of HR” comprised of Mr Himanshu Seth, Head- HR Transformation, Vistara- TATA SIA Airlines, Mr Rattan Chugh, CPO, Times Internet, Mr Abhinav Gera, Head-Talent Management, Hero MotoCorp and Dr Satish kalra, Professor, Organizational Behaviour, Great Lakes Institute of Management, Gurgaon. The panel discussed that though the new age HR is highly data driven, still we cannot rely on Big Data, AI and ML entirely to make core decisions. The HR function includes people strategy and that requires human wisdom, understanding of emotions and values which can only be understood by another human. While agreeing that AI has made the mundane work much easier and faster for eg, collecting data on employee moods and behaviour patterns through chatbots, the panel concluded that the humans and technology will have to work in a hybrid model.
Third Panel Discussion
The third panel discussion on the topic “Supply Chain Design: Harnessing the power of Analytics & E-commerce” comprised Mr Dayanand Tripathi, GM-Talent, Rewards & Culture, Ecom Express Pvt Ltd., Mr Ritwik Barman, COO & India Head – International Express & Freight Forwarding, DTDC Express Ltd., Ms Venu Vashista, Director-Supply Chain, Kohler Kitchen & Bath India, Mr Surajit Banerjee, CEO & Founder, Ostino Enterprise Pvt Ltd, Former Director- Management Consulting, KPMG India, Mr Siddhartha Mathur, Global QHSE Management, Hellman Worldwide Logistics and Professor S K Palhan (Moderator), Great Lakes Institute of Management, Gurgaon. The panel opined that Data Analytics and Machine Learning play a huge role in demand forecasting where the machine understands the past trends and based on current trends predicts the future demands of goods. The panels also shared that organizations are using machine learning and robotics in their manufacturing plants, by leveraging IOT, Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, machines could tell what part is not working, the batch code of the part, how to fix it, and which settings would be needed to make it functional. Mentioning the importance of automation and robotics in the manufacturing industry, the panel discussed an example, where an e-commerce giant’s automated warehouse with robots, having no human intervention, helped it cut down the operating expenses by 20 percent.
Fourth Panel Discussion
The fourth panel discussion on “Rethinking the Indian Banking Industry Business Design” comprised of Mr Samir Mehta, CBO, Hero FinCorp Ltd, Mr Nuti Chakravarthy, EVP, Axis Bank, Mr SSK Pradhan, CGM, RBI, Mr Biswanath Sengupta, CEO, NSPCL India, Mr Manoranjan Sharma, GM & CLO, Canara Bank, Dr Ahindra Chakrabarti,(Moderator) Professor, Finance, Great Lakes Institute of Management, Gurgaon. Discussing the various disruptions brought in by the technology in the banking system, the panel said that the banks are partnering with fintech companies to leverage all the technological innovations alongside regular banking practices. The Panel further mentioned the various changes that have happened in the banking industry like, the size of the bank branches has considerably reduced, all transactions are carried out digitally by the customers. Banks are coming up with their own virtual chatbots that provide relevant and contextual responses to customer queries and even helps make transactions on the chat window itself, mobile banking, mobile wallets and UPI payments are some other great innovations incorporated in the banking and finance industry. Today, the customers can also get their personal as well as business loans approved and disbursed in no time due to the data and tools available with the banks.
Fifth Panel Discussion
The fifth panel discussion on “Preparing India to lead in the Artificial Intelligence Age” comprised of Mr Hetal Shah, Head of products & Co-founder, Kognetics, Mr Indranath Mukherjee, Head-Strategic Analytics team, XL Catlin, Mr Varun Goswami, AVP & Head – COE (Digital Sensing/ Mobility/ Robotic Process Automation), Newgen, Mr Sanjoy Roy Choudhury,(Moderator) Country Head & VP, Evalueserve, Mr Sanjay Thawakar, VP - Analytics, Max Life Insurance, Mr Anurag Verma, CEO & Co-Founder, fnMathLogic,“ The panel spoke about the importance of Big Data for AI and ML and the three basic pillars of AI which enable it to function as intended – the ability to scrutinize large amounts of data, the ability to understand languages, and the ability to process images and other such media. They talked about how important it is to make sure that AI always remains as a means to solve problems and does not turn into a scam due to privacy and security concerns. AI should be treated as an enabler for smarter and more efficient decision-making and not as a substitute for human expertise. From this thought comes an alternative acronym for AI – Augmented Intelligence – in the sense that it augments decision-making and is incomplete without an expert at the heart of it, an expert who is capable of thinking about how he is thinking over a problem and training the AI to think on those lines.