In an exclusive interaction with SCIKEY, Mr. Pramod Singh, Chief Analytics Officer and Vice-President Data Sciences and Analytics at Envestnet | Yodlee, speaks about the future of data analytics and science in conducting business, lessons learnt in the past year and how pandemic has highlighted a new level of urgency in multiple things.
What are some of the most significant shifts you have seen across organizations in 2020?
Multiple companies have undergone a dramatic change in business from a technology perspective. This change was already in the works but was accelerated thanks to COVID-19.
This has helped companies optimize their servers and focus easily on their jobs. The next major shift is regarding the working location. The pandemic taught us that we can be productive even if we are not physically present at our cubicles.
Another major shift was in terms of automation and artificial intelligence. People can now purchase and sell things virtually without the hassle of paperwork getting in the way. For example, in restaurants, people don't like to touch the menu. Restaurants now have QR codes that people have to scan, and the entire menu is on their phone. So, these are some tiny things that have shifted.
As humans are evolving, another thing I believe is evolving is data privacy. For businesses operating in remote areas, a lot more data is shared, so maintaining privacy becomes even more critical. The last change I would like to mention is witnessing digitalization in entertainment. We are no longer watching movies in theatres instead streaming entertainment on online platforms. With social distancing norms in play, individuals are now adopting new technologies at a faster pace.
What is the one lesson you have learned from this pandemic and why it matters? What is the biggest opportunity that businesses should seize in 2021?
It is vital to understand that the traditional ways of predicting no longer exist, the data has changed and old models of prediction no longer work. Therefore, one needs to create an organization and evolve themselves to the point that no matter what comes their way they are ready to face it.
Organizations, too, have struggled to ramp up or ramp down, when moving to online channels. However, they managed to stay in touch with their employees and customers.
These insights and analytics can be a very powerful tool in decision-making for businesses, individuals and the government to make informed decisions toward helping us all navigate through this crisis.
The pandemic highlighted a new level of urgency in multiple things, mostly how business is being done. Can you share how you leveraged Big Data Analytics to enable the company to navigate the COVID-19 crisis and help create a business roadmap for the next year?
Getting data, putting together all the points, extracting the right entities out of it, creating the proper linkages, and evolving creating models on top of predicting something involves a massive data machinery behind it. Many organizations took this opportunity to restructure themselves or create a roadmap for their businesses. All the changes that were being thought about are getting accelerated into their daily functioning. It is essential that organizations focus on their strengths, areas of opportunities and work on both sides. If organizations are not employing data science, it is almost an essential thing to do.
How are analytics powering the Future of Work for the next two years? How are business and tech leaders adjusting to the rapidly changing business dynamics due to COVID?
COVID-19 has transformed and impacted every industry in some way. In the beginning, it looked like productivity had reached an all-time high, but then this number began to dip, affecting both employees and their families. Companies, such as ours, that we're prepared to operate digitally didn’t feel much of an impact.
Today, customer behavior has changed drastically. Some industries, too, have experienced a positive change in terms of a surge in business, especially those in the food delivery sector. The surge has been high and sustained, and preliminary analysis indicates some of that customer behavior will stay and not go back to the pre-pandemic era.
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