Overview – Pushing the boundaries of innovation
Emerging technologies are enabling artificial intelligence (AI) to go beyond automation of routine tasks and address complex business challenges not previously tackled by ‘traditional’ IT and engineering.
Many companies in the artificial intelligence space continue to work in the areas of procedural automation, capturing expert knowledge in a machine-readable format, and then automating the execution of these complex but repetitive tasks. Infosys, however, is focused on how new technologies – combined with a team of artificial intelligence specialists – can deliver enhanced value by enabling companies to work on complex cognitive tasks. These tasks address issues that technology systems have previously been unable to solve.
Infosys has deployed a number of systems that replicate human decision-making in areas such as financial service regulation and ticketing of IT issues, thus enabling productivity improvements by up to 40 percent and saving customers millions of dollars annually.
In addition to this, Infosys is working with global clients to use artificial intelligence to address business challenges. Enterprises need artificial intelligence for complex modelling of a problem based on a detailed understanding of the existing business processes and wider business challenges.
Infosys achieved breakthrough performance in the following areas by automating cognitive tasks:
- Infosys BPO applied artificial intelligence techniques to create its ‘Forecasting as a Service’ offering. By analyzing multiple data points within business processes, this service became a new source of business intelligence. It enabled companies to find information that was previously hidden and use it to improve business forecasting. For example, Infosys used this service to help a client identify US$ 200 million worth of working capital from its account payables, inventory, and accounts receivables that were potential savings.
- Infosys brought together the best of predictive modeling techniques and engineering expertise for a global manufacturing company to schedule component parts optimally. This saved millions of dollars while improving customer loyalty. Sensor enablement, real-time analytics, and data science modelling provided the client with a solution that improved service management of its fleet by predicting the downtime and improving the asset efficiency. The complexity of the problem and the large volumes of data to be processed required an enhanced computing model that learned and adapted without human intervention.
- The ability to use artificial intelligence to augment human decision-making has been leveraged in the development of the Infosys Knowledge-Based Engineering (KBE) platform. This captures product design and process expertise, and leverages the information to automate design and creation of complex next-generation engineering products. Infosys enabled engineers to spend more time on innovation while automating mundane activities.
- Infosys utilized artificial intelligence techniques to solve complex engineering problems in design, testing, and certification of complex engineering products by utilizing the historical data that could otherwise not have been solved using traditional engineering techniques.
As machines and systems take over performing repetitive tasks, the role of humans becomes even more important. “Liberated from the mundane tasks, humans can focus on finding new problems to solve while also solving the existing greatest challenges of our time by using the unique capabilities that only humans have – empathy, creativity, and imagination. I am optimistic that artificial intelligence techniques will help us solve next-generation problems, and that humans will play the most important part in this process,” explains Vishal Sikka, CEO of Infosys.
Infosys Artificial Intelligence practice
- Infosys has delivered nearly 30 projects for clients using artificial intelligence. Many of these first projects have been in manufacturing and financial services
- Infosys is currently developing solutions based on artificial intelligence and its KBE platform to solve complex problems in the engineering space
- Infosys developed and delivered a specialist four-week course in artificial intelligence to over 1,000 engineers at its Mysore Global Education Centre; additionally, 500 engineers will attend this course every quarter
- Learning artificial intelligence technology modules are now mandatory for all new joinees (approximately 30,000 in FY2015) embarking on the six-month training program at the commencement of their career at Infosys
Fostering an innovation ecosystem
The Infosys Innovation Fund focuses on strategic investments in startups with groundbreaking ideas in the following focus areas: artificial intelligence, automation, analytics, big data, cloud, machine learning, and learning, collaboration and design.
Infosys has launched a Web portal that enables entrepreneurs globally to apply and participate in the firm’s US$ 500 million investment earmarked for disruptive technology startups. Startups with a focus on any of these areas have the opportunity to achieve scale and accelerate growth by participating in the fund. They can also collaborate with Infosys practice groups to access large enterprise customers, technology experts, and an ecosystem of partners.
Infosys has deep client relationships with some of the world’s top brands, and has earmarked US$ 250 million for India-based startups and US$ 250 million for startups from other parts of the world such as Silicon Valley, Israel, Asia Pacific, and Europe.
- Infosys helped optimize development of aircraft floor beams for a leading aircraft manufacturer using Knowledge Based Engineering (KBE). This involved automation of the end-to-end product development process, reducing cycle time by 10 months, with 33 percent less effort over the conventional approach. We also achieved weight savings of four pounds per floor beam contributing to improved fuel efficiency.
- Infosys enabled predictive maintenance and corrective action for a global mining major, analyzing ~300 million records in less than four seconds. The IIP-based solution provided real-time data analytics to optimize production schedule, spare part order release, maintenance schedule, energy costs, machine availability and reliability, and asset utilization. This reduced machine breakdowns with significant improvements in downstream supply chain operations efficiency and business profitability at 1/1000th of the cost.
- Infosys developed a solution, based on industry-leading visualization tools coupled with an open source technology stack for real-time predictive analytics that helped predict high propensity customers for a leading office automation client. Predictive analysis took only seven seconds to prioritize sales force action for over two million records, thereby helping identify target customers to promote cross-sell and up-sell.
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