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WASHINGTON, DC

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Thriving in the Digital Age: How Automation, AI and Blockchain can Drive Transformation

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Digital is transforming the way people live, work and play. Organizations are faced with both opportunities and challenges brought about by the increasing pace of digital innovation driven by technologies such as Automation, AI and Blockchain. To survive and thrive in the Digital age, companies have to transform and adapt their business and operating model to align with new market realities.

Join Avasant on October 30, 2018 in Washington, DC for a one-of-a-kind event. Come hear top industry executives and thought leaders share their thoughts and experiences on the new blueprint for transformation and strategies critical for success in a fast changing market.

This event will address important questions facing technology and business executives today:
• How should companies develop a transformation roadmap to avoid getting disrupted in the Digital Age?
• How are digital technologies such as Automation/RPA, AI and Blockchain impacting enterprises and what is the best way to leverage them to drive transformation?
• How can organizations partner with technology and services firms to implement these transformation initiatives?
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Empowering Beyond Symposium is designed to inspire and stimulate peer-based dialogue between executives from enterprise organizations who are looking to co-create business value with their technology partners. This event begins at 2:30 PM and runs until 6:00 PM followed by a networking drinks reception until 7:00 PM.
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Opening Keynote: Dare To Dream: Creating The Enterprise Of The Future

Kevin Parikh, Global CEO of Avasant, shared his views on the enterprise of the future and how innovations in technology will transform how businesses and humans operate through Digital Singularity. Kevin described a world where technology is all around us without a device in sight. It is seamlessly interwoven into our lives, automatically supporting us, our relationships, and our businesses. Kevin spoke about hyperconvergence, the coming together of two or more independent technologies to create something with a whole new purpose and function. It is through these hyperconvergences that the total sum is exponentially more valuable than its individual parts.

Kevin believes that advancements in technology will lead to many changes by 2030 that will completely alter our day-to-day lives as we know them. Four key concepts highlighted were:

  • barrier-free access – everyone should have equal access to all information, providing opportunity for everyone to succeed
  • transboundary communities – connecting like-minded individuals that transcend distance and provide connection across multiple senses (video chat)
  • a sharing economy – business models have to adapt to the sharing mentality, such as the already successful bike and car-share programs
  • democratized egalitarianism – everyone has a voice and businesses can tailor offerings to the individual, not the majority

Additional examples of future digital age solutions were provided including self-driving shopping pods and self-driving cars that seamlessly transition from delivering pizzas to picking up passengers.

Kevin concluded his presentation with a message that “The Digital Age promises a future where humanity has the opportunity to reach its greatest potential…”
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Panel: Leveraging Automation, AI and Blockchain In The Transformation Journey

Anupam Govil, Partner at Avasant, led a panel discussion on the topic of, “Leveraging Automation, AI and Blockchain In The Transformation Journey”. The panel was made up of industry leaders including Saeed Elnaj, VP of IT and CIO at the National Council on Aging, Deepak Luthra, Head of the Digital Center of Excellence at Bristol-Myers Squibb, Ravi Sarkar, Head of Blockchain and FinTech at Hexaware, and Ali Tafreshi, Former SVP and CIO at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport.

Blockchain has many potential use cases and applications, however the true benefits have yet to be realized. To date, the only proven Blockchain examples have been through cryptocurrencies. Industry leaders are currently piloting many different use cases for Blockchain. Two examples identified use cases for Blockchain are exchange of value and asset tracking (supply chain management). Exchange of value has already been developed with cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. Governments around the globe are currently working on developing their own cryptocurrencies utilizing blockchain. Supply chain management has been identified as something that could experience tremendous benefits with the implementation of Blockchain, with IBM and Maersk working together on a solution today.

Cryptocurrencies are viewed as technology that could help transform the exchange of value. It currently takes 3 days for a trade to settle. Utilizing Blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies could transform how currency is exchanged.
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Keynote: The New Role of the CIO

Naresh Lachmandas, Former CIO at L3 CSW delivered his keynote on “The New Role of the CIO in the age of Digital Transformation”.

With the rapid pace of digital transformation, business models are evolving. Traditional IT delivery models are unable to address current business challenges and align with the rapid pace of technology transformation. Organizations are being challenged to simultaneously provide stable and cost-effective IT services while driving leadership and innovation. Business leaders are defining integrated ecosystems of partnerships, based on strategic relationships, that address actual drivers of business value.

The strategic CIO will focus their attention on various initiatives including strategic staffing to create a dynamic culture to hire and retain the next generation of employees to support growth. The strategic CIO will ensure that they are staffing appropriately to support the evolution of new operational models including advancements in AI and Automation. The new role of the CIO will need to focus on the increasing demand for digital transformation and new IT delivery models with an emphasis on performance management and value leakage. The changing landscape has led to new IT provider partnership models that continue to evolve. Vendors need to alter their pricing models to account for value-based invoicing, that is, outcome-based pricing to their clients based on the actual value provided.

Naresh concluded his presentation with one final message: “If you don’t change, you will not survive”.
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Keynote: Innovation and Disruption in the Digital Age

Sanjay Gupta, currently serving as the CTO of the US Small Business Administration, delivered Empowering Beyond Symposium Washington D.C.’s closing keynote on the subject of “Innovation and Disruption in the Digital Age”.

Sanjay provided the tangible benefits of disruption in the digital age. As the CTO of the US Small Business Administration (SBA), Sanjay led the design, architecture, migration plan and ATO to the cloud in only 82 days with $0 in the budget for the transformation. When Sanjay began as CTO, it would take roughly 6 hours to process and analyze a large data set. With the initiatives Sanjay implemented, the SBA reduced the 6-hour process and analysis of large amounts of data to only 6 seconds, which amounts to a 3600x improvement! An additional benefit was realized by the disaster assistance loan program which provided hurricane disaster support due to three significant storms last year. Having a cloud-based system in place enabled the SBA to ramp up its team from 800 to 5600 people.  Previously this support would have required significant hardware purchases and an extended period of time to bring them online.  The cloud-based system provided a simplified ramp-up and ramp-down process which saved money, but more importantly, time. The project was started with a $2500 payment on his corporate credit card and was ultimately funded by the elimination of the support contract on the hardware that was replaced by the cloud.

Sanjay concluded the keynote with 3 major takeaways:

  1. Challenge the status quo
  2. Be bold, start small, iterate
  3. Become comfortable with operating outside of your comfort zone

Sanjay’s example truly lived up to these takeaways as he had to do all three on the job. This was his first foray into the public sector, having spent his career in the private sector. He’s had to learn the ropes of operating within the Federal government while rolling out big change, like cloud migration. There isn’t time to wait or waste, and we must be ready and willing to be disruptive, make mistakes, and learn as we go.
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Fireside Chat: Scaling Automation Across A Global Organization

Anupam Govil hosted a fireside chat with Ajay Jindal, Senior Director at Lexis Nexis and Joseph Santamoreno, Vice President of Sales Northeast Region at UiPath where they shared their experiences on “Scaling Automation Across A Global Organization”.

Automation has become a necessary component of all global organizations. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is a proven technology. However, little value can be gained if the processes themselves aren’t aligned with the digital age. An example given was in the airline industry where many flights could be impacted in the case of a system outage. There are two legacy systems airlines use: one to schedule flights and one to schedule flight crews –and they don’t talk to each other. This creates a scheduling nightmare, which would lead to reputational risk as well as financial risk. Teaching bots to solve these very manual scheduling updates frees up the human worker to take a step back and focus on the bigger picture.

RPA, when implemented and utilized correctly, can help organizations improve their efficiency and provide a great deal of cost savings. Many organizations are currently in the process of exploring, scaling, and innovating their IT organizations to drive efficiency. In the end, it is all about business outcomes.

One of the biggest fears and resistances to RPA, and much of the digital age, is what happens to jobs. While current jobs may become obsolete, many new jobs will be created. Current staff won’t lose their jobs, rather they will be challenged to apply their expertise in new ways.
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Attendees of Empowering Beyond Symposium DC 2018 will receive a copy of

Digital Singularity: A Case for Humanity

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Learn more

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[av_team_member name=’Ali Tafreshi’ job=’Former CIO, Dallas Fort Worth International Airport’ src=’https://avasant.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/Ali-Tafreshi-180×180-1.jpg’ attachment=’12165′ attachment_size=’full’ description=” font_color=” custom_title=” custom_content=” custom_class=” admin_preview_bg=”]

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[av_team_member name=’Naresh Lachmandas’ job=’Former CIO, L3 CSW’ src=’https://avasant.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/Naresh-Lachmandas-180×180-1.jpg’ attachment=’12166′ attachment_size=’full’ description=” font_color=” custom_title=” custom_content=” custom_class=” admin_preview_bg=”]

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[av_team_member name=’Kevin Parikh’ job=’Global CEO & Senior Partner, Avasant’ src=’https://avasant.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/Kevin-Parikh_200x200-180×180.png’ attachment=’1789′ attachment_size=’square’ description=” font_color=” custom_title=” custom_content=” custom_class=” admin_preview_bg=”]

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[av_team_member name=’Anupam Govil’ job=’Partner, Avasant; President, AvaSense™’ src=’https://avasant.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/Anupam-300×300-180×180.png’ attachment=’10161′ attachment_size=’square’ description=” font_color=” custom_title=” custom_content=” custom_class=” admin_preview_bg=”]

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[av_team_member name=’Janet Gosche’ job=’Senior Director, Avasant’ src=’https://avasant.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/Janet-Gosche-1-180×180.jpg’ attachment=’12167′ attachment_size=’square’ description=” font_color=” custom_title=” custom_content=” custom_class=” admin_preview_bg=”]

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[av_heading tag=’h2′ padding=’10’ heading=’Preview Last Year’s Event’ color=” style=’blockquote modern-quote modern-centered’ custom_font=’#0f5795′ size=” subheading_active=” subheading_size=’15’ custom_class=” admin_preview_bg=”][/av_heading]

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Tuesday, October 30, 2018
2:00 PM – 7:00 PM

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National Union Building,
918 F St NW,

Washington, DC 20004

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About Avasant


Avasant is a leading management consulting firm focused on translating the power of technology into realizable business strategies for the world’s largest corporations. Specializing in digital and IT transformation, sourcing advisory, global strategy, and governance services, Avasant prides itself on delivering high-value engagements through industry-focused innovation and flexible client-based solutions.

Our seasoned professionals have an average of 20 years of industry-honed expertise, having conducted 1000+ engagements in over 50 countries. Avasant’s next generation consulting and advisory methods have made it the top-ranked firm in its class, with recognition from numerous organizations, including: Vault, NOA, IAOP, and Wall Street Journal.

Avasant’s engagement in the global market has inspired a strong commitment to community and purpose. Avasant Foundation supports technology and skill development programs to create employment opportunities for youth across Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and Latin America.

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