Slowdown calling for new ideas on value generation

economic meltdown alok kumar
Slowdown has continued for long and slowly seems to be becoming bolder. Indian government issues are increasing by the day with skeletons of corruption falling out of cupboard with ever increasing frequency. Policy paralysis seems to have added to the slowdown woes to the common man in form of increased cost of living, joblessness and increasing desperation.

On the brighter side, history is proof that even from the most abysmal situations societies have come out even stronger. Post World War era is a proof where devastated countries stood out to become prosperous once again. In such a situation too, business leaders now need to stand up eliminating wastages and start working out products and services which will bring high value to the customers. While such changes are anyway bound to happen over period of time, such an economic slowdown situation can only push business leaders to hasten such initiatives.

“Models have to be reinvented to bring higher value to customers in form of outcome based services and pay per use models …”

Looking at Technology alone, we can see that the Indian IT scenario has been a story of unprecedented success and growth. However, this gave rise to IT companies focus on profitability more than anything else.

Over three decades, the business model being followed by these IT companies have come under threat as it was the case of typewriters at the time of start of personal computers. Last typewriter was produced two years back in Godrej in Mumbai ending the era of the great machines which started in 1874 in New York and ended up in 2010 in Mumbai. If leaders of IT companies feel that even their business model will last for more than a century, in that case the decline curve has already set in.

Models have to be reinvented to bring higher value to customers in form of outcome based services and pay per use models. Customers are waiting to get a taste of services where someone truly acts like a partner sharing their risk and successes.

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Picture Credits : libertyvoice, For representational purposes only

By Alok Kumar

Alok Kumar

Alok Kumar is Managing Partner of SRKay Consulting group, a private equity company, nurturing innovative ventures. Alok also serves on the board of ICCL (Indian Clearing Corporation Limited - A subsidiary of BSE- Bombay Stock Exchange) as an external advisor for technology and information security. Prior to this, Alok had been Managing Director of Sears IT & Management Services India Private Limited (SHI) since its inception in December 2009 and served in the same position till very recently. Having been in senior IT management positions in Fortune 500 companies, Alok has won several national and international awards. Alok is instrumental in planning and setting up SHI and thereafter growing it to a multi-locational thousand-plus people organization. Over the last five years, with his strategic vision, Alok helped SHI grow roots in India, develop and support technology applications and infrastructure across core mainframe, cutting edge e-Commerce and big data technologies. With his unique people-oriented transformational leadership style, Alok turned SHI into one of the most valued investments of Sears, garnering great ROIs, and creating value much beyond cost arbitrage. Under his tutelage, SHI has filed two patents and is recognized widely for its best practices in various areas, the latter, currently featured in Indian Institute of Management (IIM) case studies. SHI also became a CMMI Level 3, PCMM Level 3, and ISO 20000 certified organization. Alok is a widely acclaimed corporate leader in India today. He regularly participates and leads various forums as a keynote speaker and is an author of several books in different genres. Alok has several awards to his credit. He is particularly known in the industry for his people management skills and innovative ideas in improving the productivity of employees through unique people practices. He has been credited with the following industry awards: ¬ Emerging Leader of the Year award 2013 by ¬ Game Changer CEO of the Year 2013 (SHRM) ¬ CIO 100 - The Bold CIOs - 2008 (Reliance Infosolutions) ¬ CIO - Ones to Watch Award 2008 (Reliance Industries) ¬ Extended Manager Award - CIOL 2004 (Tata Teleservices) As an able leader of SHI, Alok got SHI recognized widely in the industry with the following several awards: ¬ CII Award for HR Best Practices in 2014 ¬ Global Excellence in Outsourcing Award - AIOP (Phoenix 2013) ¬ IT Innovation Award (Design & Engineering) - Computer Society of India 2012 ¬ Golden Company of the Year - Economic Times 2011-12 ¬ 7th Employer Branding Awards - World HRD Congress (Mumbai, India) 2013: • ‘Asia’s Best Employer’ Award • ‘Best HR Strategy’ in line with business • HR Leadership Award • Talent Management Award by Bloomberg TV India ¬ Employer Branding Awards - World HRD Congress (Singapore, Asia) 2013: • 7th rank in ‘Asia’s Best Employer’ award • Award for ‘Best HR Strategy’ in line with the business • HR Leadership Award Other recognitions: Alok had served on the distinguished panel of NASSCOM's GIC (Global In-house Centers) National Council members. The council members play a key role in major initiatives of the industry and include the torch bearers of IT industry as panel members. Books and Papers: Alok is an established author, with three books to his credit. Alok’s third and latest book, a novel, “The Spy from Unaula” is a 2015 publication. A handwriting analysis enthusiast, Alok collaborated with his wife Nandani on the book, “Handwriting Speaks” in 2006. “Value Sourcing – Future of IT Outsourcing” was co-authored with Keith Sherwell (currently CIO, Altice USA) and was released in 2013. Alok also researched and published two whitepapers: a. “Creating next generation captives” talks about the best practices that are helping generate higher value from the IT company captives.

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