The inhouse developed artificial intelligence (AI) platform of Wipro — Holmes — has found increased traction for the IT major with more than 180 of its clients using this automation technology. Launched over 30 months ago, Holmes was seen as one of the big bets for Wipro as it sought stronger foothold in emerging technology areas such as AI, digital, cloud, big data among others. Holmes, developed after four years of research, is built on an open-source technology. This can be used to automate industry specific business process. Talking to FE, Wipro chief operating officer BM Bhanumurthy said, “The investment in Holmes is definitely paying off with now more than 180 customers being on this platform.” In late 2015, the IT major had over 70 of its customers using the Holmes platform. Wipro has been engaged with automation technologies for quite some time now with larger focus being on implementing in its various internal process like travel booking, accounting process etc. According to Bhanumurthy, this automation technology is also being used to run the operations of its customers. Though, he remarked that Holmes is not just about cost savings but also about the reliability of delivering a service. As an example, Wipro was able to reduce operational failures for an European Lighting major by 17% and cut down the volume of work by 45% due to the implementation of Holmes.
To further expand the reach of Holmes, Wipro has also now opened this technology platform to third party technology solution providers. Technologies such artificial intelligence leading to automation has become a buzzword for the $150 billion plus Indian IT industry as it scout for newer ways of delivering services. Bhanumurthy said the delivery of services has changed over a period of time on four counts: What to deliver, methods employed, technologies deployed and change in pricing. The theme of automation has also helped Wipro in managing the size of its employee headcount. At the end of September quarter, the IT major saw its headcount reducing by 3,031 people with automation being one of the key factors. Wipro ended second quarter of FY18 with a sequential revenue growth of 2.1% in dollar terms to cross over $2 billion for the first time. There was also an 50 basis points sequential improvement in operating margins during the quarter. The company attributed this improvement in margins due to productivity gains.