There were times when businesses using technology to ease their processes were considered innovative. However, now use of technology has become the norm and what differentiates the best from the rest is how well they are able to leverage the power of technology.
Technology has to be a part of every business strategy due to its tangible and intangible benefits. For example, use of sensors supported by artificial intelligence in the manufacturing industries has enabled the workers to get signals in advance about the malfunctioning of the equipment. Similarly, use of Augmented Realty based wearables helps the workers to locate the problem areas easily. In short, technology improves the efficiency of the operations and for the employees too, it gives opportunity to improve their skillsets, reskill themselves and increase their earning power.
India Inc all set for Industry 4.0
The power of technology is helping companies to transform their product design manufacturing process and presentation to the customers. Technology is no longer a driver of cost and efficiency but a means to actually transform businesses.
The Indian business houses have sensed the power of technology and are investing a lot to empower their organisation to adopt the technological advancements. Major investments are channelled towards adopting cloud computing, artificial intelligence, robotics and agile technologies. They believe these advancements will help them in personalizing their offerings, leveraging the ecosystem to its fullest potential, embrace risk and overcome it instead of avoiding it. They feel the cost incurred can be easily recovered as the customers are willing to pay a premium for personalization. Also, technology enables them to generate revenue from the core business as well as ancillary businesses.
Myth of technology will replace labour force
The advent of technology in every field has created a scare among the employees that their jobs are at stake. However, AT&T has proved that this is a myth. AT&T was about to sack a huge number of people but retrained them and they became very useful. These popular technologies like Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and so on are new and still evolving. There is no ready supply of talent pool. So, the businesses are encouraging their employees to reskill themselves with one or more of the currently in vogue technologies. They want them to not only learn but also prove its utility in the context of their organisation in bettering the processes, systems and services . They emphasise that for the seed called technology to bear fruits it requires the right talent to nurture it. Only when technological knowledge is coupled with business knowledge, it will yield intended results.
Management and CFOs role in technology adoption
Management cannot rest by bringing in the technology. They have to take the onus upon themselves to bring about the requisite changes throughout the organisation for smooth adoption and accruing the gains from the use of technology. At the organisational level, digitization should be made a priority and accordingly partnering should be done with fintechs and other organisations. CFOs, should allocate enough funds for technological innovations. The mindset of the employees should be changed by highlighting the positive side of technology adoption as well as their role in the organisation post the technology implementation.
A B Ravi of CNBC–TV18 had a detailed discussion on how is India Inc is preparing themselves for the technology disruption or Industry 4.0 with Prabal Banerjee – Group Finance Director, Bajaj Group, V Ramakrishnan ,CFO, TCS and Subhradeep Mohanty – CFO, India, Standard Chartered Bank.