Hexaware has continually emphasised the importance of integrating generative AI into its core operations. With this in mind, AI Magazine spoke with the President & Global Head of Consulting & Generative AI Practice at Hexaware Technologies, Arun “Rak” Ramchandran.
Ramchandran is the head of Hexaware’s recently-launched AI consulting unit and is tasked with driving generative AI development within the company. Here, he speaks on the potential of AI and how Hexaware will provide advanced generative AI solutions to its clients and help businesses continue to adapt and innovative.
Tell us about your career path and prior experience to Hexaware - what got you to where you are now?
Prior to Hexaware, I was with Capgemini for six years and with Infosys for 11 years, both leading IT services multinationals. In these roles I was responsible for leading business units, large sales and client facing organisations, and winning/leading transformational deals in global roles.
I have a Bachelor of Technology degree from IIT Bombay, one of India’s premier engineering schools, and have a Master of Business Administration qualification from IIM Calcutta. These qualifications have given me a solid foundation across technology and business, and a problem-solving mindset, that I am able to apply in different situations, to learn and contribute.
I found it really interesting to see how technology has evolved over the last several decades as well as its relationship and dynamic interplay with Trust. I find it even more fascinating to see how the role of AI and now Generative AI is getting us to reimagine Trust in technology. It has intrigued me for a long time, and is something I have written, spoken, and published white papers and books about too.
I have lived in the heart of Silicon Valley for close to 25 years now. This has allowed me to keep in touch with the various innovation waves, the local ecosystem of start-ups and disruptors, and a greater appreciation of the ebbs and flows of transformation impacting all of us as humans!
Tell us about Hexaware’s new Generative AI Consulting and Practice Unit? What is your role within this?
Hexaware’s Generative AI Consulting and Practice Unit has been formed to help deliver robust, advanced generative AI solutions that offer quantifiable business advantages. The unit draws on our expertise in helping businesses unlock value using emerging technologies, covering every step of the way from consulting and uncovering use cases to strategies for adoption. Working in partnership with our customers, the unit will enable them to adapt, innovate, and thrive in this exciting new era.
As part of this unit, I lead the gen AI initiatives for Hexaware. I’m very excited and honoured to be leading the unit, with a mandate to not only help our customers push forward but also ensure generative AI is deeply embedded into Hexaware’s core operations.
Why is generative AI important to Hexaware?
Generative AI is truly a transformational technology, and its impact will be felt across all parts of our lives in the years to come. The economic impact is likely to be substantial and it has generated hopes, hypes and also fears!
This technology is important to Hexaware because it is also important to our customers. The potential is vast: as McKinsey says, the initial use cases that have emerged could generate US$4.4tn for the global economy each year – that’s bigger than the GDP of the UK!
This is just the beginning. Already we have seen use cases emerge across manufacturing and consumer products, with successful proof of concept work showing exciting possibilities covering core areas from product development to supply chain optimisation. In the years to come we will see other industries making headway, from banks improving customer service and knowledge management to life sciences organisations taking clinical trials to the next level.
It is going to disrupt service providers like Hexaware through its impact on underlying economics and service offerings, whether it is coding, testing, customer operations, or service desk. We need to understand and leverage it, to reduce expenses, improve developer productivity, increase revenue, and also disrupt our clients and industries.
Our proven track record of enabling businesses to digitally transform means we’re perfectly placed to help realise the promise of generative AI. Being an early adopter carries numerous risks, from unanticipated costs to use cases failing to deliver what they promised. We have an important role to play in the coming years, leveraging our expertise to help our customers overcome these barriers and reap the rewards from generative AI.
How is Hexaware leveraging generative AI in order to ensure value growth for its customers?
Our proprietary frameworks and methodologies provide structure and guidance that enables customers to make informed, intelligent decisions about how to implement and unlock value from generative AI.
Firstly, we use DecodeAI to demystify and deconstruct generative AI opportunities and use cases. This provides companies with a navigational compass to help navigate a constantly evolving landscape. Meanwhile EncodeAI supports our customers through an engagement and execution framework that helps to deliver and deploy the right solutions.
Using these frameworks, our expertise and consulting services, we’ve already helped customers unlock a number of benefits – ranging from tenfold increases in efficiency, to reducing knowledge ecosystem management costs by 80%. This is just the beginning, and we are excited to support a growing number of businesses scale and unlock the value.
AI tends to come with some risks or shortcomings. What is Hexaware doing to mitigate this and ensure responsible AI practice?
It’s important that businesses carefully plan their adoption of AI technologies. Obviously, there’s a huge amount of hype around AI, and generative AI in particular. As a result, it can be tempting to adopt and integrate generative AI as fast as possible – but it’s crucial to consider the risks.
There are a range of potential problems, from damaging customer experience to bigger risks like compromising confidential information and breaching GDPR rules. Our consultancy and frameworks help customers mitigate risk, playing an increasingly important role in helping them sidestep everything from data hallucinations to data poisoning.
Looking forward there is quite rightly a growing concern around ethics and generative AI. The problem for many businesses is that regulations can differ from region to region. Our global expertise is proving invaluable for customers, as we guide them through everything from the EU’s more prescriptive approach to the US’ focus on self-regulation and California’s more stringent standards. Our customers can move forward, confident they fully understand the implications of the rules in each country they operate in.
What future plans do Hexaware have to develop AI further?
We already have a strong framework to build from and will continue pushing forward through our partnerships with industry giants including Microsoft, Google, and NVIDIA. We’re excited about the progress that will be made by combining these partnerships with our own internal AI expertise.
We will continue to develop innovative solutions to keep our customers ahead of the curve and unlock even more value from generative AI. We also plan to invest in building custom models for our customers and in key industry segments. Away from these partnerships, we are also collaborating with leading research institutes and academics on the future of safe and responsible AI.
Our deep understanding of the risks and opportunities around generative AI will position our customers for success, as momentum builds over the next few years.
- Upskilling Global Workers in AI with EY’s Beatriz Sanz SaizAI Strategy
- Intuitive Machines: NASA's Odysseus bets on Private CompanyData & Analytics
- The Impact of AI on Cybersecurity: A Need for PreparednessAI Strategy
- Salesforce: Businesses Must Better Prepare for AI RevolutionData & Analytics
“Okada Manila throws everything at providing an extraordinary experience and we succeed every time”