“What worked for the last decade will not work in future unless we realign ourselves to a digital-led transformation”

Thompson P. Gnanam, MD & Global CEO, 3i Infotech Featured in   IT/ITeS 100 - In Partnership with IDA Ireland

While many businesses have seen volatile times in the last two years, 3i Infotech, with domain expertise across BFSI, healthcare, manufacturing, retail and Government sectors, has emerged as a leading name in the current wave of digital transformation initiatives

With change in management and structural and technological advancements in play, 3i Infotech’s MD & Global CEO, Thompson P. Gnanam tells us that FY21-22 will be a year of transformation for the company. He opines that ‘what worked for the last decade will not work in future unless we realign ourselves to a digital led transformation.’ And, he believes that the only way to do this will be through the adoption of disruptive technologies like AI, IoT, machine learning and so on, to pave the way for cognitive transformation in all businesses.

In this tete-e-tete with Smart CEO, he talks to us about the specific steps the company is taking to go digital, his views on the adoption of AI in businesses, and the company’s growth plans in the next three years. 

How did 3i Infotech deal with the pandemic? 

At an organisational level, we maintained our corporate culture remotely. We actively engaged with on-site and internal employees, and stakeholders. We moved our business to the cloud to ensure business continuity and discovered new and alternative communication channels. At a client level, we developed centralized customer data for an integrated engagement experience. When customer data privacy concerns came into the limelight, we assured them that we would provide uninterrupted IT services without increasing costs.

What steps have you taken towards digital transformation? 

We see FY21-22 as the transformation period. On the business side, we have entered three new business segments including Digital Business Services, Digital Transformation Consulting and NextGen Business Services along with our existing Enterprise Services business. On the operations side, we have created a new marketing, revenue assurance and strategy process to support our overall growth plan. 

We have also restructured our management this year. We have hired a Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Growth Officer for North America, EMEA (Europe Middle East & Africa) region, India Business Head, India Head for Business Process Services, Global Delivery Head for AAA (Application Automation Analytics) and Global Practice Head for Cloud Solutions. We believe that the new 3i Infotech structure and business strategy will fuel the future growth of the organization in the coming quarters in all major territories, creating more value for our clients and bringing business for us.

As we step into a new decade of 5G data and technology, we also envision being the steady force to lead our clients into the new dawn of digital business services. We are strong advocates of the fact that what worked for the last decade will not work in future unless we realign ourselves to a digital led transformation. We believe that the only way to do this is through the adoption of disruptive technologies like AI, IoT, machine learning and so on, to pave the way for cognitive transformation in all businesses.

AI, though a buzzword, is not seeing widespread adoption. What are your views on this? 

While post pandemic, many businesses have started digitizing their operations and implementing AI technologies, AI is still not fully functional due to several reasons. Firstly, there is a lack of a fully digital infrastructure because the digital transformation journey of many organisations have begun only recently. To deploy AI, all systems, functions and processes, companies need to be digital ready. Secondly, there are data issues related to cybersecurity, digital data, data mapping and timely availability of data. Thirdly, there is a lack of vision at the management level on how to implement and make best use of AI technologies. Lastly, AI talent is not readily available. 

What steps are you taking to upskill employees in an increasingly digital environment? 

We are nurturing a vibrant culture of learning and personal development, and adopting a hire-train-engage model. We are equipping teams with the latest technologies, tools and best practices. We are also providing customized in-house and external training programs, and on-the-job mentorship programs for our employees. 

The next three years.
As per our 10-year strategy, we see our FY25-26 revenues at INR 2,000 crore with an EBITDA of INR 300 crore.  And, to achieve this, we are planning to focus on our run, grow and build service strategy. We are also planning to set up multiple centres of excellence (COEs) within India as well as outside in NOC-SOC for NuRe, Application Testing, OCI, MSFT and BFSI. We think that these COE’s will add value for 3i Infotech in terms of client offerings and new revenue streams.

IDA Ireland ITeS100 ITeS 100 3i Infotech Thomas P Gnanam

Poornima Kavlekar has been associated with The Smart CEO since the time of launch and is the Consulting Editor of the magazine. She has been writing for almost 20 years on a cross section of topics including stocks and personal finance and now, on entrepreneurship and growth enterprises. She is a trained Yoga Teacher, an avid endurance Cyclist and a Veena player.

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