About the author: Gagan A Deshpande is the director of Nuance’s Service Reliability Center, Hosted Operations, Global Technology Solutions. A business leader with focus on building successful teams, service reliability, optimal customer experience, digital transformations, cloud adoptions, operational excellence, innovation & global delivery, backed by extensive 22 years of international and multi-cultural work experience.
If you’re not a Nuance customer, you may never have heard about our India-based Service Reliability Center (SRC)—but it’s the driving force behind exceptional customer experiences at organizations all over the globe. And now it’s using automation to enhance its services—and deliver new ones.
The SRC is responsible for the smooth running of our hosted operations, providing comprehensive, 24/7 operational support for our global customers across all Nuance products and services. For our customers, the SRC is so much more than a Network Operations Center. It’s the face of Nuance—the first place they turn to when they need help.
The SRC team doesn’t just focus on monitoring the performance of solution components; it takes a more holistic, customer-focused approach, dedicated to delivering the very best experiences for Nuance customers.
Importantly, every team member is an innovator, always looking for ways we can do things better, or do more for our customers. That’s why the team recently embarked on a mission to take its capabilities even further by becoming a Center of Excellence (CoE) for automation.
The power of automation
For the SRC team, automation isn’t about replacing people—it’s about helping people do their jobs better and faster, and free up time to do other things.
Take IVR traffic redirection, for example. Traditional methods of redirecting IVR traffic on customer platforms could take upwards of 45 minutes for each data center. And because these methods were manual, there was always the possibility of human error (even SRC engineers aren’t perfect!).
So, team members spent time outside of their regular working hours learning how to use various robotic process automation (RPA) solutions. The results from the minimum viable product they trialed with 10% of our customers were so great that the automated solution was quickly rolled out across the customer base. Now, with automation in place, IVR traffic redirection takes just 11 minutes, minimizing the impact on our customers’ operations.
Making time—and using it wisely
After this initial success, the team began automating a variety of routine processes. That’s helped the SRC optimize productivity and improve the speed and quality of the service it delivers. It’s also freed time for engineers to focus on other things. They can perform their usual tasks faster and error-free, which gives them time to develop their own innovations, collaborate with colleagues, learn new skills or domains, and improve their work-life balance.
The SRC team isn’t just saving time—it’s using that time wisely. A team already committed to delivering operational excellence is now even more motivated and engaged, and has become a recognized automation CoE, both within Nuance and with our customers.
“The SRC team is getting a lot of attention for its automation development capability. Every day, we get requests from around the world for help with automation projects, R&D services, and expert consultation,” says Gagan Deshpande, Director of the Nuance Service Reliability Center. “Demand for such an innovative team is very high, and we’re always looking for new team members. When recruiting people to join the SRC team, we focus less on skills and more on people’s mindset. We want team members who are ready to learn and apply new technology, and to understand processes, how customers use our products, and what we can do to optimize the experience.”
A winning team with clear strategic direction
The CoE model has helped the SRC create an overarching structure for its automation initiatives, including training and support, best-practice sharing and collaboration, and a clear governance framework.
Having a robust structure, a high-performing team, and buy-in from Nuance’s senior leadership means the SRC can progress with its long-term strategy to become a one-stop shop—not just for customer support, but also for automation expertise.
Over the next 12 months, the SRC plans to roll out several new services. A concept to realization service will automate processes either as turnkey solutions or using a build-operate-transfer model. The team will also offer automation consultancy, subject matter expertise, and advisory services. And critically, the SRC will also connect the dots across global teams, ensuring Nuance makes the most of its new automation capabilities by reusing solutions wherever possible.
“By the end of 2022, we aim to be Nuance’s global preferred automation partner,” says Gagan. “We’ll have an end-to-end automation capability right here in India that we can deliver as a service, creating value for our global organization and for all of our customers—and helping our team members get more out of their working day and advance their careers.”