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2017 AN EVEREST GROUP VIEWPOINT
2017
AN EVEREST GROUP VIEWPOINT
2017 AN EVEREST GROUP VIEWPOINT Enterprise Bots Adoption Business Assurance Needs Bot Assurance Yugal Joshi, Practice

Enterprise Bots Adoption

Business Assurance Needs Bot Assurance

Yugal Joshi, Practice Director Siddharth Muzumdar, Senior Analyst

Copyright © 2017, Everest Global, Inc. All rights reserved.

Analyst Copyright © 2017, Everest Global, Inc. All rights reserved. w w w . e ve
Analyst Copyright © 2017, Everest Global, Inc. All rights reserved. w w w . e ve

EGR-2017-4-V-2277

2017 ENTERPRISE BOTS ADOPTION Executive Summary In today’s digital world, automation and user experience have
2017
ENTERPRISE BOTS ADOPTION
Executive Summary
In today’s digital world, automation and user experience have become critical
for enterprises. This has made bots central to the strategy of any forward-looking
enterprise. These bots drive operational efficiency and facilitate consumer
engagement. Their rapid adoption is witnessed across customer engagement,
IT operations, and various other business processes.
However, as these bots proliferate, enterprises face significant challenges in
“Bot adoption cannot
their assurance and governance. They are unable to assess which bots aren’t
be a siloed, ad-hoc
initiative. Rather, it has
to be driven enterprise-
wide with a view to
create value through
working per design or which one will fail and the resultant impact on
business. A poor remediation strategy is further creating business risks. These
challenges stem from limited planning, inadequate validation, fragmented
control, and lack of attention to security and scalability.
orchestrated bot
assurance and
governance.“
1
A successful bots adoption strategy is critical for the digital world
and should be assisted by a strong vision and structured assurance
Enterprises are struggling to assure bot outcomes and govern the
2
bot ecosystem in light of rapid and voluminous adoption
Enterprises should adopt a new Remediation, Orchestration, and
3
Integration (ROI) to derive meaningful value from their bots adoption
Bots can create business challenges if not assured and governed with a holistic
strategy. They can result in business downtime, increased reputation risk, and
significant overhead costs. This defeats the very purpose of bots adoption. As
increasing number of enterprise processes get impacted by bots, a carefully crafted
assurance strategy becomes the fulcrum for any successful digital enterprise.
With the increasing adoption of bots, enterprises should reconsider typical metrics
to evaluate success. They need to conduct a thorough assessment of their current
bots adoption and identify gaps in assurance, governance, and security.
Enterprise-wide bots collaboration in an automation-assisted environment will help
to drive bot assurance and minimize governance challenges.
This research addresses the concerns and challenges enterprises face in bots
adoption. It analyzes the adoption of bots by enterprises, the challenges they are
facing, and recommends a strategy to drive breakthrough value through an
assured bots adoption philosophy.
w w w . e ve r e s t g r p . co m
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Enterprise Landscape for AI Bots – Bots Are Everywhere
Enterprise Landscape for AI Bots – Bots Are Everywhere
 

Why bots? In today’s digital world where users consume services on their mobile devices,

 

interact with businesses via social media, and expect rapid resolution of their

issues regardless of the communication channel, enterprises need to ensure that

they can cater to the needs of these finicky customers. The advent of Artificial

Intelligence (AI) and its subsegments, Machine Learning (ML) and Deep Learning (DL), have opened new avenues for enterprises to leverage automation and deliver improved experiences to their customers.

Enter bots

 

A bot (short for robot) is not a fear-inducing machine out to destroy mankind.

 

Rather, it is a way to automate activities, reduce manual intervention, complete

jobs faster, and engage users.

 
 

E X H I BI T 1

     

Benefits of leveraging bots

Streamlined

 
 

Source: Everest Group

Enhanced

experience

Accessibility Improved productivity
Accessibility
Improved
productivity
Enhanced experience Accessibility Improved productivity processes Reduced overheads

processes

Enhanced experience Accessibility Improved productivity processes Reduced overheads

Reduced

overheads

Informed

decision-

making

“The enterprise landscape is getting flooded by bots that

   

Streamlined processes: Bots automate processes and eliminate friction among

 

different departments (e.g., running IT policy automation, driving self-service desk,

and helping contact center operations)

 

provide multiple benefits

Informed decision-making: By quickly fetching data from multiple sources, bots

 

beyond standard

enable more informed decision-making for users (e.g., scanning thousands of IT

automation.“

operation logs for root cause analysis or providing history of all previous interactions

 

to a sales representative enabling her to chart out a suitable course of action)

 

Accessibility: Bots are always-on, connected, and contextual. Often accessed from

users’ mobile devices or simply running on their own based on business rules, they

 

offer ease of access and connectivity (e.g., bots invoked through spoken or textual

inputs on mobile devices)

 
     

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Improved productivity: By enabling automation of repetitive, tedious tasks, bots

 

improve user productivity and resolve issues faster (e.g., 30% less wait times and

15-20% faster transaction completion through chatbots on mobile devices)

Reduced overheads: Bots take away the burden of administrative overheads

and free up time for more complex, innovative activities (e.g., automated meeting

scheduling, email management, and reminders)

Enhanced experience: End-customers that interact through mobile-enabled bots

 

witness an enhanced experience through smoother interactions via messaging

channels (e.g., chat-like experience on bots on Slack messaging platform)

 

E X H I BI T 2

 
 

Customer

 

Major areas of bots adoption

in enterprises

engagement

Business

 

Source: Everest Group

operations
operations
operations

Employee

engagement

IT operations
IT operations
IT operations
IT operations
IT operations

IT operations

 
 

“Over 90% of

 

Because of these and several other such benefits, bots have captured enterprises’

enterprise bots are

attention. They offer the opportunity to not only engage end-customers more

chatbots or script-

effectively, but also improve internal operations. Consequently, several use cases

based automation

have emerged of bots being used across organizations.

engines.“

 
 

The Bots bonanza

There are four major types of bots:

Chat-based: Often called “Chatbots”, these are invoked through textual triggers

 

such as a message through chat interfaces. This is the most common type, as it is

also easy to develop and deploy

Video-based: There is an “avatar” of the bot that interacts via video and checks for emotional response, facial cues, and mood through facial mapping and facial

 

recognition technologies

Audio-based: These communicate via audio media and respond by using natural

 

language generation

   

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Rules-based: These “faceless” bots generally used in back-office operations are

 
 

typically automation engines, often without a user interface, that run scripts based

on pre-defined business rules

 

Within an enterprise, we see increased adoption for chat-based and rules-based

 

bots. More than 90% of bots fall under these two categories

 

E X H I BI T 3

 

Chat-based

Video-based

Major types of bots

Major types of bots  
 

Source: Everest Group

“Use cases of enterprise

 

bots span customer-

engaging chatbots,

back-office scripts, and

commerce-enabling

assistants.“

Audio-based Rules-based
Audio-based Rules-based

Audio-based

Rules-based

 
 

Some popular use cases of bots include:

Bank of New York Mellon Corp: Developed back-end bots that automate

 

previously human-led activities such as responding to data requests and fixing

errors in fund transfer requests

 

The Weather Company: Developed chatbots on the Kik and Cola mobile

 
 

messaging platforms to facilitate interactive communication on weather

 

Bank of America: Developed an audio-based and chat-based bot, Erica, that

 

can be accessed through consumers’ mobile app. Erica allows users/consumers

to check balances, check FICO scores, and make payments

 

Taco Bell: Built TacoBot on the Slack communication platform that allows

 

consumers to interact through Slack to check out the menu and order items

 

Shell Oil: Launched Emma and Ethan, virtual self-help assistants on the Teneo

 

platform to enable customers and distributors to learn more about its lubricant

products and get customized, automated responses

 

Clearly, bots adoption is among the top priorities for enterprises. There are several

other use cases of bots being adopted as customer service agents, personal

assistants, IT operations assistants, communication agents, and even in cybersecurity.

   

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Challenges in Enterprise Bots Adoption – Limited Assurance is a Big Risk
Challenges in Enterprise Bots Adoption – Limited Assurance is a
Big Risk
 

“Enterprises forget that

 

While these are interesting and certainly innovative use cases of bots adoption, most

bots are pieces of

enterprises are facing challenges in smoothly running their bot-enabled environment.

software and need

They are struggling to answer four major questions:

assurance. This

 

assurance includes availability, validation, and, traceability.”

1. Can we identify which of the bots have stopped working? 2. Can we assess
1.
Can we identify which of the bots have stopped working?
2.
Can we assess which of the bots will stop working and when?
3.
Can we address why the bots are not working the way they should?
4.
Can we govern the lifecycle of bots across our ecosystem?
 
 

The four questions above are tightly intertwined with a few fundamental dimensions

enterprises struggle with, as described below:

1.

Vision: Bots adopted without a specific purpose and vision yield suboptimal

 

results owing to inadequate planning

a. Limited planning: Implementing a bot without evaluating its scope

 

(which activities and processes it can automate) and purpose (whether it is

needed in the current environment) leads to hindered adoption. A narrow

scope provides minimal returns, while an excessively broad scope becomes

a management hassle and defeats the very definition of a bot. Many

enterprises end up adopting bots with overlapping capabilities, which diminishes business benefits that can be derived

 

b. Siloed adoption: Ad hoc and hasty adoption, which often stems from the

 

fear of missing out, ends up being an overkill. Each business unit and IT

function ends up driving its own bot agenda

 

2.

Assurance: Bots based on AI techniques operate in a closed-loop system that

 

learns over time. Owing to the fundamentally closed architecture of these systems, business assurance is put at risk

a.

Availability: Bots need to be monitored continuously to ensure they are

 

available and operating as expected. Bot downtime (planned or otherwise)

impacts assurance significantly. Enterprises that neglect ongoing monitoring

and remediation of bots will lose sight of the processes it impacts and will

find it difficult to manage the bots ecosystem

 

b.

Validation: Given the learning nature of bots, unlike traditional software,

 

they need to be validated periodically to ensure they are working as

designed. Any issue regarding divergence from expected performance

should be analyzed and documented. The algorithms running these bots

need to be open enough to be debugged and rectified

   

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“Enterprises struggle to plan their bots

adoption and often

fail to ensure proper

functioning and

monitoring of the bots

ecosystem. They often

also struggle to manage

the security and

integration of bots across

the enterprise.“

c. Traceability: Once the bots are operational, most enterprises struggle to

identify the bots that are not working as per the design. They witness an

underperformance of their systems; however, they are not able to identify the

bots responsible for this. To ensure a proper root cause analysis, enterprises

will need to have strong traceability built into their bots operation framework

3. Governance: This is a commonly overlooked aspect of enterprise bots adoption

a.

Control: Each business unit within siloed enterprises adopts, operates, and

governs bots in its own way. This fragmentation of bot governance creates

operational challenges such as lack of visibility on performance. Moreover,

as each unit defines its own bot workflow and policies, assessment of bot

impact across the enterprise becomes difficult

b.

Standardization: Business units adopt bots with narrow scope within their

domain without an enterprise-wide governance and management policy.

This poses challenges for standardization of bot governance. Moreover, lack

of a centralized and orchestrated governance strategy creates management

complexities and prevents executive leadership from having a consolidated

view of bot performance across the board

E X H I BI T 4 Where are enterprises going wrong? Enterprise challenges in
E X H I BI T 4
Where are enterprises going wrong?
Enterprise challenges in
bots adoption
Source: Everest Group
2. Assurance
1. Vision
4. Security
3. Governance
5. Scalability

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4. Security: One of the major areas of enterprise oversight on bots is security

a.

Privacy and regulations: Bot workflows often transcend system boundaries,

 

extending across multiple applications, infrastructure, and data sources.

Enterprises that design bot-based processes without due consideration to

privacy, security, and compliance norms are inviting trouble. For instance,

HIPAA and SOX regulations (healthcare and financial services industry

regulations) need to be stringently followed when implementing a customer

service chatbot that gathers data from multiple systems and interacts with

customers on their mobile devices

 

b.

Bot masquerading: The vast volume of bots within and beyond the

 

enterprise exposes them to malicious activities. For instance, botnets (systems

with malicious software that attack other systems) may scan for enterprise vulnerabilities in a bot environment and masquerade as a genuine enterprise bot. This not only exposes loopholes in enterprise bot security but also allows malware bots (mal-bots) to engage with the external users’ environment

 

5. Scalability: Enterprise bots need to be scalable and flexible so that they can be

tweaked to users’ changing demands and avoid the rigidity associated with

monolithic systems

a.

Volume-value balance: Bots usually perform specific functions such as

 

scheduling meetings, interacting with consumers, and automating IT

operational activities, among others. Owing to this typically narrow scope,

the number of bots adopted in an enterprise across business units balloons

over time. This burgeoning volume results in management complexities

including resource costs to manage bots, maintenance costs, and overheads.

Additionally, bot implementation across siloed units leads to multiplicity of bots, creating redundancy and reduction in value derived

 

b.

Extensibility & integration: Bots with point solutions lack the extensibility to

 

be integrated with other existing systems. In an enterprise landscape, bots

that cannot integrate with systems such as CRM, ERP, and mobile platforms

pose scalability challenges. Without cross-platform integration and

extensibility, bot adoption suffers

 

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Recommendations for AI Bots Adoption – Leverage a Different ROI
Recommendations for AI Bots Adoption – Leverage a Different ROI

Bots are here to stay. Every enterprise will, of course, create a business case for bots,

will have a strong purpose of adoption, will build an architecture, and evaluate their

impact. However, all of this can happen only when enterprises focus on ROI -

Remediation, Orchestration, and Integration.

1.

Remediation: Assuring that the bots are running and working as per design is

the most critical aspect of a successful bots adoption strategy. Moreover, in case

bots go wrong or fail, enterprises will need to design fail-safe mechanisms to

ensure business continuity while remediating the bots. They also need to have a

mechanism to identify and rectify these failures. They should not only develop a

mechanism to sustain the business process when the bot is down, but also

develop ways to fix, train, and validate bot outcomes

2.

Orchestration: Enterprises can address bot multiplicity challenges by orchestrating the bot ecosystem and governing their performance. Bot farms that can be orchestrated across business units help to deliver a seamless experience

to the user. For instance, an IT operations policy control bot may act on specific

servers; however, multiple applications across businesses will be dependent on

that server. Therefore, enterprises need to have an end-to-end view of such bots

3.

Integration: Enterprises will integrate bots with their customer-facing systems as

well as with other sources of data. However, one key integration should be with

IT management systems. This integration is often overlooked and when things go

wrong, enterprises are unable to recover or remediate effectively. Therefore,

functional integration, which ensures that the bot works as per design and gets the requisite data, is important. At the same time, integration with systems management platforms to ensure that the bots run smoothly is equally valuable

for a bots adoption strategy

Remediation

Orchestration
Orchestration
for a bots adoption strategy Remediation Orchestration FOCUS ON ROI Integration 9 “Enterprises should devise

FOCUS

ON ROI

Integration

9

“Enterprises should

devise a structured

assurance and

governance strategy

in order to derive value

from their bots adoption.

This involves planning

for bot remediation,

orchestration, and

integration in a way

that does not hurt business outcomes.“

E X H I BI T 5

Considerations for enterprise

bots adoption

Source: Everest Group

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Conclusion
Conclusion

Enterprises are already adopting bots and the implementations will only increase in the future. We believe that though bot design and structured onboarding are

important, the true differentiation is the ability of an enterprise to make its bot

environment work holistically.

For this to happen, their vision, assurance, governance, security, and scalability need

to evolve. Everest Group observes enterprise bot adoption happening in three broad

models. The key is the value derived from bots adoption. Enterprises at different stages in the maturity curve will exhibit unique characteristics across various

dimensions described below.

E X H I BI T 6

Value derived from bots

adoption and characteristics Fragmented Optimized Breakthrough Source: Everest Group  Task-driven bots 
adoption and characteristics
Fragmented
Optimized
Breakthrough
Source: Everest Group
 Task-driven bots
 Process-driven bots
 Outcome-based bots
Vision
 Limited collaboration
 Team collaboration
 Enterprise wide collaboration
 Individual driven,
 Team-aligned bot assurance
 Portfolio-driven bot assurance
Assurance
bot-based assurance
 Shared custody of
 Limited orchestration
bot assurance
 Automated and orchestrated
assurance
Governance
 Loosely structured
bot governance
 Manual management
and monitoring
 Well-defined function-driven
bots governance
 Automated management
 Scaled governance
of bots landscape
 Automation-assisted
remediation
 Bots integrated with
 Bots well-entrenched
 Basic security policy adoption
for bots
enterprise security tools
into enterprise security
Security
and processes
architecture
 Issues resolved with siloed
Root Cause Analysis (RCA)
 Aberrations handled at
department level, via RCA
 Predictive security
management and assurance
 Business case owned by
 Business case owned
teams, less visible outside
by functions
 Strong enterprise-wide business
case for additional bots
Scalability
 Bots overload due to excess
 Bots configurable to
 Customizable and configurable
functionality
address changes in ecosystem
as per business needs

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Irrespective of the adoption strategy or models that enterprises eventually adopt,

once the bots are deployed in an enterprise, the enterprise will need to

continually invest in enhancing their business value. We believe that much like

other technologies, enterprises will adopt different types of bots for varied

business objectives.  Focus on “general AI” to create thinking bots that can take decisions
business objectives.
 Focus on “general AI” to create thinking bots that
can take decisions by connecting the dots
 Well orchestrated bot management platform to
introduce, augment, and remove bots from enterprises
 Feature functionality and underlying technology
constantly monitored and proactively upgraded
 Bots become an enabler to drive growth with a
constantly monitored feedback loop and business case
Entrenched
 Focus on “narrow AI” to create intelligent bots for
specific functions
 Emergence of standardized operating model for bots
 Functionality upgrade based on feedback from
select channels
 Well-designed performance metrics that are
regularly tracked and updated
Embedded
 Mostly handle mundane repetitive tasks with elemental
leverage of AI principles
 Operating models and knowledge sharing are scattered
across enterprise silos limiting the business value
 Typically “deploy and forget” model with limited
evolution of the bot lifecycle
 Business case focused on immediate gains, long term
benefits are not clearly articulated
Entrant
Bots adoption journey
All enterprises need to assess their bots adoption and understand specific
characteristics they exhibit. They need to invest in bots assurance to derive sustained
value. Simply adopting bots and expecting business value to materialize will not
work. An enterprise with full visibility of its bots landscape, strong remediation
valueBusiness

processes, and where the teams work in tandem to derive business value from bots

will succeed in the new digital era.

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About Everest Group
About Everest Group

Everest Group is a consulting and research firm focused on strategic IT, business services,

and sourcing. We are trusted advisors to senior executives of leading enterprises, providers, and investors. Our firm helps clients improve operational and financial performance through a hands-on process that supports them in making well-informed decisions that

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knowledge, problem-solving skills, and original research. Details and in-depth content are

available at www.everestgrp.com.

This study was sponsored, in part by Accenture

For more information about Everest Group, please contact:

 

+1-214-451-3000information about Everest Group, please contact:   info@everestgrp.com For more information about this topic

For more information about this topic please contact the author(s):

Yugal Joshi, Practice Directoryugal.joshi@everestgrp.com

Siddharth Muzumdar, Senior Analyst

 

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