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Global Auto Manufacturing group implements ADAPTify to fuel Digital Transformation

“Enabling Field-sales staff through NLP based Chat-bots and automated defect management”

INDUSTRY PERSPECTIVE

The Indian tractor industry is relatively young but now has become the largest market worldwide (excluding sub 20 hp belt driven tractors used in China), accounting for one third of the global production. The Indian rural consumer has also transformed significantly over the last five years. Contrary to popular myth, the typical Indian rural consumer has adopted digital technologies very rapidly and are eager to transform their relationship with companies which they interact with.

About the Client

The Escorts Group is a premier manufacturing and engineering company in India, that operates in the sectors of agri-machinery, construction & material handling equipment, and railway equipment. The company was launched in 1944 and has operations in more than 40 countries. The Group has been one of the pioneers in Indian manufacturing and has embarked on a digital transformation journey to transform itself in the age of digital and Artificial Intelligence.

  1. Increased adoption of digital solution by front end sales teams leading to significant improvements in lead conversion and customer engagement
  2. Significant decrease in defects due aided by the ability of performing detailed root case analysis

With this massive surge the industry has also witnessed tremendous competitive pressures wherein newer players with smaller and more economical models have attempted to take away market share from established players like the Escorts Group. The hyper competitive marketplace and the emergence of possible digital disrupters in the agricultural sector has made it critical for companies like the Escorts Group to adopt a digital first strategy. Given these twin imperatives, The Escorts Group has embarked on an ambitious digital journey. The Group has partnered with Actify Data Labs to craft its digital journey.

Data is the foundation of all digital strategy; therefore, the most important foundation for a successful digital journey involves integrating data across all internal and external sources. Actify Data Labs has leveraged its end-to-end data platform ADAPTify to build the enterprise data lake for Escorts. The power of the pre-built connectors within ADAPTify was instrumental in delivering a complete data lake within 30 days.

The phase-1 of the data lake involved the following data sources:

  • Oracle ERP
  • Sales Management System
  • HR System
  • Product literature repository
  • Contact centre data

Once the foundation of data was completed in 30 days, the ground was ready for the germination of new digital solutions. Actify’s dedicated digital lab for Escorts was leveraged to create solutions that use the data lake to deliver business impact.

Solution 1 : Field Sales automation (Hinglish Chat-bot)

The first digital solution that was developed by the digital lab was to impact the performance of front-end sales teams by empowering them with the right data. While Escorts had a comprehensive mobile App for sales person to consume data, but acceptance of the same was limited due to multiple reasons; key among them being the fact that most of the sales persons were not very conversant in English and were not sophisticated users of digital tools. In addition, the App also provided all information but required navigation of complex set of links.

To address this problem, Actify created a very simple natural language-based chat bot for salesperson to consume data on-demand based on natural language questions. The most significant feature of the App was its capability to interpret natural language questions in Hinglish (Hindi – the most common language in India, typed in English script). The chat bot was created to give a WhatsApp-like feel to users. The bot is an intelligent user interface that recommends data driven insights. It also allowed users to apply route optimization based on natural language queries.

The heart of the bot were the subject-specific data marts that were created in ADAPTify and connected to the bot using a socket-to-socket connection that is part of the expose-as-web-service component within ADAPTify.

Solution 2 : Defect management

The second solution developed by Actify’s dedicated digital lab aimed at addressing product quality concerns by creating a defect management solution on top of the integrated data. The data quality and data profiling components in ADAPTify indicated that the defect data captured in the plant had serious data quality issues, hence the data was not ready to create the defect management solution. To address this challenge, the digital lab created a defect capture solution. The defect capture solution was automated to reduce manual error in data entry; the solution included a barcode scanner; once the bar code was entered; the data from ADAPTify was integrated (using the expose as web service component) with the application to fetch all details about the tractor. Further, users were guided through the data capture journey to ensure that data capture errors are eliminated.

Once the data issues were resolved, the defect management solution allows root cause analysis to be performed to reduce defects and to create various on-the-fly reports using ADAPTify to analyse trends and drill downs.