With the AI Summit San Francisco just around the corner, we caught up with the Senior VP and business leader for Genpact’s rapidly growing Digital Solutions, Gianni Giacomelli. Gianni is involved in driving the growth strategy and go-to-market operations for all of Genpact’s digital-led AI solutions portfolio. He has a wealth of experience in the AI world and was one of the main architects in the creation of Genpact’s Research Institute and the ‘Lean Digital’ approach. Today Gianni advises top business leaders worldwide in how to best leverage emerging technologies in their organizations. He has authored several scientific papers in collaboration with MIT and is a frequent contributor to the press.

Genpact is a business process management and services corporation with key offices in New York City, Palo Alto, London, and Delhi. They have 77,000 employees in 20 countries and provide services to over a hundred Fortune 500 companies. Today Genpact is helping to revolutionize the enterprise landscape with Genpact Cora, the industry-leading AI-based platform for digital transformation. Genpact Cora powers an array of AI-based products and services at cutting-edge speed and flexibility. The benefits to their clients range from higher revenue growth, accelerated cost take-out, improved business agility and winning customer experiences. Genpact Cora was recognized as one of the “top three AI platforms” for the enterprise sector by analyst firm HfS.

In our interview, Gianni Giacomelli sheds light on the transformative impact of AI and shares how business leaders can best harness its capabilities. Gianni believes that AI is the fundamental success driver and enabler for competitive advantage for all global organizations.

Transforming the digital landscape

Gianni opens the interview explaining why AI is the technological catalyst of our time.

“AI offers the opportunity to not only drive productivity gains and cut costs but to transform the nature of work and the business value chain.”

“We are experiencing significant changes in the nature of industry competition which can be seen in the financial sector where the rapid improvement in text analysis has dropped the loan processing time from 10 days to 5 minutes. AI is helping to drive breakthroughs in a wide array of customer experiences –  you can even order an Uber via Amazon Alexa. Tasks are being performed at unprecedented speeds; organizations are able to compare and understand thousands of contracts and invoices in real-time.”

“Like many ground-breaking innovations, the challenge is often not just technology – it is embedment of that technology into the fabric of business processes, and even totally altering how the work is done, while understanding and minimizing the risks of the new technology.”

Adapting to the demands of the customer

Gianni emphasizes that a shift in mindset is therefore paramount for success to be cultivated across the organization. In this way, enterprise leaders must have the demands of the customer at the heart of their strategy.

“Digital transformation is a CEO and boardroom topic today. Leaders need to wade through the significant AI hype to understand where they should focus to develop a use case that could have a transformational impact for their company. Companies recognize that end to end customer expectations are continually rising, and new AI-based consumer technologies are themselves creating rising expectations to see this same level of sophistication within the business world. Designing of superior customer experiences based on AI does not start with AI – it starts with the customer experience and the design of the enterprise processes that make that experience delightful.”

Gianni explains;

“a claim is processed in minutes instead of days – that starts not just with the algorithm that calculates the probability of fraud, or the right amount based on customers’ situation. It must start with the analysis of what really makes the customer experience superior – is that speed, or certainty, or support in understanding how to avoid such situations that make the client truly delighted?”

“Then, we need to create a business process that executes the upstream tasks (e.g., cleansing data sets) that leads to a superior moment of truth, across all communicative channels. This work combines digital technology with the understanding of the interplay between front, middle, and back office of enterprises when they attempt to deliver it. This approach is what we call Lean Digital.”

Genpact Cora 

We asked Gianni what makes the AI-powered platform Cora unique to the business leader. He explains:

“Genpact Cora is the AI-based platform for digital transformation. It is a modular and interconnected mesh of digital technologies that spans from Intelligent Automation to AI . Cora automates and optimizes work, providing businesses with flexibility, investment protection, and business insights.”

“The Cora platform is unique because of our ability to use it as part of our Lean Digital approach which doesn’t just focus on technology but also harnesses (a) human-centered design to craft superior customer experiences (b) lean principles and industry/functional domain expertise brought to bear to ensure the design of business processes that ensure a consistent, scalable delivery of that experience.”

Cora LiveSpread

Gianni delves into some of the notable solutions provided by Genpact Cora across the industry spectrum. He claims that there are multiple AI-based products and services designed to accelerate and scale digital transformation. One example is Cora LiveSpread

Cora LiveSpread is a solution provided by Genpact Cora for banking and financial services. Livespread uses patented extraction and computational linguistics technologies to intelligently automate the financial spreading process. With Livespread, one finance firm was able to automate and standardize 80% of their processes, saving them costs by up to 70%.

Gianni describes how LiveSpread functions further, “LiveSpread leverages AI technologies to automate spreading with improved efficiency, accuracy and consistency.  This product is able to handle 60,000 rules, 15 languages, GAAP rules for 12 countries and able to extract appropriate data from report footnotes.  As a result, our clients have realized higher revenues, 50% reduction in time-to-decision, 66% lower processing time, and 100% compliance with regulatory audits.”

Gianni states that another solution Cora Contract Assistant is also allowing companies to streamline their bottom line.

“Cora Contract Assistant leverages AI technologies to scan millions of documents and check for errors in billing based upon the company’s existing agreed-upon contract pricing.  This is an example of a work function which humans could not effectively perform in a timely manner.  Cora Contract Assistant is discovering significant of potential impact to the business bottom line (and can avoid up to 5% leakage).”

Safeguarding the future

If we are letting algorithms make decisions that impact society, it is vital for companies to guard against unintended bias in data sets that could cause harm to certain groups. We asked Gianni about these risks moving forward and how we ensure transparency is met from all organizations.

Gianni states, “AI will bring great power but will also require levels of responsibilities that we may not have seen in the past. For instance, the removal of human judgment from decisions may generate discrimination and mistakes with often significant consequences. A few guidelines will help:”

  1. Utilization of techniques that enable traceable reasoning (e.g. “why did the machine say that my loan was declined”)

  2. Creation of environments that cross-validate the decision using separate sets of algorithms (e.g. rejection of machine’s judgment because of a challenger algorithm specifically tailored to detect risk or discrimination came to a different conclusion)

  3. Combination of humans and machines for certain process steps (e.g. manual revision of results when the challenger algorithm flags the results of the original machine as “questionable”)

“Some of the above steps are not core AI technologies – they are part of the development of an AI-enabled operating model that uses other technology (e.g. dynamic workflow, advanced analytics, etc.) to harness the combined power of people and AI.   This is, for example, why Genpact uses its lean digital approach.”

AI Summit San Francisco

Next week, Gianni will be leading a panel discussion at the AI Summit San Francisco entitled “beyond the hype”: how to instigate pragmatic, practical, and measurable ROI from artificial intelligence today. We asked him what he hopes to gain from participating;

“I am looking forward to having meaningful discussions with global enterprises about potential AI use cases with their environments.  In addition, we’ll look to collaborate further with our Genpact Cora partner ecosystem to make sure we are investing to develop the right AI solutions for our clients.”