Businesses today have more data at their disposal. Advanced algorithms are around for extracting meaningful insights from that data and turn that data into action. Data play a crucial role in digital transformation, and it’s not just the sheer volume of the data, it’s the data quality that makes all the difference. Amit Walia, President, Products and Strategic Ecosystems and Ansa Sekharan, EVP and Chief Customer Success Officer at Informatica walk us through some of the company offerings that are helping businesses to transform themselves and sustain in the increasingly digital and data-driven world.
How do you help customers on their digital journey?
Amit Walia: There are three kinds of transformation journey the customers are going through these days. First, they are looking at transforming the whole customer experience game. Second, they are looking at transforming their operating models. Third, they are coming up with innovative products and services. And as they are leveraging digital technologies to embark in their transformation journeys, we are also seeing the rise of a whole new gamut of data-driven companies. Although enterprises used to have a large amount of data with them, but it is the companies like Google, Facebook, Amazon, and Uber who really showed them that if they could leverage all the data they have, they could become much smarter and that’s the area we are trying to help our customers manage their data from the mainframe to the IoT. We have partnered a broad ecosystem of partners and helping our customers to make sense of the complex datasets they are having, to simplify their digital transformation journeys.
But that often leads to data hoarding problems. How do you help enterprises in managing the right data?
Amit Walia: Having a lot of data is good in itself. You can always run basic algorithms to dedupe. But you also run the risk of making bad decisions out of the junk data you have. Informatica’s Data Quality product helps to cleanse the data, add the missing elements, and make it the right quality which then can be acted upon. For example, Indian Oil Corporation has been leveraging our solutions to manage the entire LPG subsidy remittance process efficiently. Another product is Informatica Master Data Management solution, which gives customers a single view of all your business-critical data from disparate information sources, and presents a 360-degree view of all your products, employees, customers and suppliers relationships, etc.
What value do you bring to the table?
Ansa Sekharan: We have a culture of ‘Eating your own dog food’ – We use our products first before we hand it over to our customers. We can always add more value this way as we can understand the engagement levels on different features, spot bugs faster and fix them quickly before the product reaching the customers. On many occasions, we can sense a problem is going to happen before it even happens. We can also recommend the ways that can deliver them better value.
You have announced your customer success framework lately. How does it help your customers?
Ansa Sekharan: We follow a three-pronged strategy. First, we look at the experience we want to offer to our customers; second, we think of the products/ services we need to design to deliver that experience; third we think the ways that can help customers get their desired business outcomes -which in turn will also help drive the adoption of those products/services. We try to make the business transformation journey easier for our customers with a continuous level of support.
Artificial Intelligence(AI) is considered a critical component of digital transformation initiatives. How are you integrating AI into your solutions?
Amit Walia: We used to ask a few simple questions to the CIOs three-four years ago- Do you know where does your data reside? Do you know how many databases you have? Do you know who’s accessing that data? What risks may you be running into? Are you using the right data for your analytics? The answer to all these questions used to be a very disappointing ‘NO’. Our goal hence became very simple. We wanted to give our customers a central view of all of their data landscape so that they can run analytics on the relevant datasets and also secure and govern them simultaneously. We created an AI engine called ‘Claire’ to accelerate and automate core data management and governance processes. Just the way Google indexes the World Wide Web, we wanted ‘Claire’ to perform the same role for the enterprise data. ‘Claire’ with the help of its machine learning engine behind it makes analytics a lot easier. We are also using it within our organization for eliminating some of the repetitive tasks in our support functions.