Digital transformation will drive industry in 2017, says Dipankar Ganguly

2017 will be the year of Visualisation  and  DevOpps, along with  Big data, and advanced agile , in addition to digital transformation, says Dipankar Ganguly, Chief Engineer, Ness Digital Engineering, and adopting digital transformation is perhaps the most key element of providing the state of art value added services. In an interview with The Education Post, he talks about the latest developments in digital space

dipankarHow far do you think India has utilised the power of digitization for the enterprise?

The concept of digital economy or digital transformation has been coming a long time, but there has been a shift in the last 4-5 years. Globally it has seen huge adoption, as in India. Today, all services are internet enabled and completely device agnostic.

Now any phone, any computer, any device, can be used for getting web based services. The plethora of data generated in India has all been harnessing the power of digital transformation.

Most of the companies, medium, small or large are in this shift. All have fundamentally figured out that this is the business way to go.

And that means the way you are developing software, the way you are looking at business requirements, the way the architecture is developed and the kind of people you have to work with, the landscape around it, all have changed. Ten years ago, applications were built on top of each other and you needed very smart java developers who would stitch this one large piece of software. Today, monolithic applications and solutions are actually no longer tolerated. Because of the eco system of different kinds of digital companies coming up, this has become collaboration, and digital technologies have enabled it. Now the idea of monolithic architecture is obsolete and software is built in collaboration with focus on recomposing with other service providers and orchestration patterns taking advantage of the API revolution.

Today, the digital world is device agnostic. Every phone, device etc. can be used in delivering services.  Today, a number of digital operations come together and form a re-composition structure. That’s the way I look at what’s happening. Because it requires a shift in the way of thinking, a shift in talent and technology, I think India has very smartly turned its game around to focus on digital transformation services across. That’s how I look at India and this market at both a consumer and provider level.

What role does Ness have in this?

Ness as a company has a lineage of helping organisations build products and platforms that serve a central role in how they do business. Before the digital economy really took shape, we did a lot of work with ISVs and product companies, because most product companies have to innovate very fast and their products must perform exceptionally well. At an ISV, the core business is to create software. Once the digital economy started taking off, software-enabled platforms have become critical for companies in virtually any industry to effectively compete in their marketplaces. For these companies, innovation and quickly getting on to the transformation bandwagon is now very important.

So, Ness as a company is tremendously invested in digital transformation and digital economy, and the work we do is centered on it. The way we look at digital transformation is to attack it from different sides and in a highly-integrated fashion. There is database, there is the UX piece and then there is the engineering piece, and they must all work together seamlessly. We know from experience that companies achieve the most effective outcomes faster when all of these pieces are developed together, rather than serially, as is often done in the market. Our Ness Connected Framework instills this discipline in every project we do, and our clients find a lot of value in the process because it accelerates the process and reduces the risk of losing important details in the handoffs.

How do Ness’s innovations in product engineering help create the environment for a superior enterprise?

Product engineering plays a very important role in our offerings obviously because it is the background which we work with, it is very close to our heart, we understand it well and have done it for multiple years now. We have been pioneers. We look at innovation from two sides. One is the inside out and the other, outside in.

The inside out paradigm of innovation focuses in providing value of our existing customers by innovating in collaboration with themand these are typically deemed out of the box, and   The outside-in model focuses on building frameworks, platforms and solution accelerators which are designed to solve business and technical problems which the industry is facing.

These tools and frameworks are innovation hooks which our prospective clients have the opportunity to use when the get engaged with Ness in a partnership. Ness Connected which addresses digital transformation and NessSMART which is focused towards advanced agile and DevOps problems are some examples of Outside-in innovation artifacts. In addition, we have invested in Innovation Hub which are located in UK , USA and India which are staffed with industry experts in Experience , Data and Product Engineering SMEs and experts with the singular focus of rapid prototyping and state of the aet best practices to help our existing and prospective

In the rapidly changing business scenario, how does Ness empower companies to stay competitive?

As mentioned, we have embraced digital transformation. We have invested seriously around Big Data, UX etc. and we have our own frameworks, such as Ness Connected and NessSMART, in which we have invested money to accelerate the development processes. And our innovation platform is inside out and outside in, giving our customers more value

BFSI was probably the first industrial sector to adopt IT as a business enabler. Digital transformation is again set to change the primer, which verticals do you think are ready for this transformation?

I think from what we have seen, most of the industries are playing for this, but the core industries that are very active around this are those which build applications and customer facing platforms. For example, we have seen with some of our financial clients there is a lot of change happening. In education there is a lot of change happening. The same is true in automotive and hence the software ISV space.  These are the four paths I can clearly see are shifting very fast, though it is certainly not limited to these industries, and we are actively working with clients in many others.

Ness Digital Engineering has had presence in countries that India doesn’t usually work in- Eastern Europe, to name a few. How was the experience of working with the flavour of localization?

We have a design and innovation center in London, and we are in fact, rapidly expanding our business in Eastern Europe. We set up a large centre in Slovakia, and then we moved to Romania where we now have two centres. Eastern Europe, I think is a very good place to work in, given their location and the rest of the advantages these countries bring.

The second thing is the kind of people we have there. Because of the universities and the strong education system in Eastern Europe, the kinds of engineers we are getting are very strong mathematically trained and very analytical people. Most of the people in these countries speak English so that is never a problem. Finally, they are hungry to grow, you think of Bangalore twenty years back- that kind of enthusiasm these countries bring. These are the advantages.

No, we never had any localization issues. Because of the location of Eastern Europe, the time zones work out very well for everybody. They are great for our European as well as US clients.

Big data, analytics, mobility- are oft talked about. What new technologies do you think will be in the hot seat in 2017?

2017 heralds a number of interesting developments in software and technology and in my opinion the following trends will gain momentum:

  • There will be rapid advances around Containerization to enable greater cloud adoption. Organizations will move more and more towards new apps in the cloud realm and container technologies such as Dockers and Elastic Box will help accelerate this move.
  • Greater adoption will be seen across application orchestration technologies with emphasized focus on portability. Orchestration technologies such as CloudFormations (Amazon), Docker Compose, and Google Kubernotes will get adopted far more rapidly by organizations that want to thrive in the Digital Economy.
  • Microservices-based architectures and API orchestration will gain more speed, thus helping organizations create decoupled and scalable applications that keep advanced monitoring, scalability, security and availability in focus. We will see stronger interest in application monitoring technologies as this wave gains momentum.
  • API orchestration and security will be a clear line of focus with rapid adoption of containerization, microservices architecture and orchestration in mind. Architects will need to focus on technologies such as OAuth, API Key provisioning, AWS API security, etc. to keep applications secure.
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