ANTWORKS: EMPOWERING GLOBAL ENTERPRISES WITH INTELLIGENT AUTOMATION
July 20, 2018
AntWorksTM is a global, artificial intelligence (AI) and intelligent automation company creating new possibilities with data through automation, digitization and enterprise intelligence. The company provides the first integrated intelligent automation enterprise-level product that is powered by Fractal Science.
With one of the world’s only platform that understands every data type, AntWorks digitizes every bit of information for a diverse range of industries. By creating human-like bots in a code-free environment, the company innovates new ways to automate complex processes. AntWork has developed ANTsteinTM, an automation platform which powers enterprises with accurate insights through an integrated, intelligent, technology stack that automates and learns independently. In short, the company accelerates the new, constantly.
The Inspiration Behind the Foundation
AntWorks’ founders come with significant vintage in Enterprise Software and Business Process Management services. They were early to spot the impact technology might have on large enterprise operations. With the rapid evolution of technology, both on automation and machine learning, it was evident that the technologies would enable disruption and this led to the foundation of AntWorks. They applied their understanding of both software and services and took a holistic view of the enterprise digital transformation journey.
The founders realized the challenges of broken architectures in the automation designs of organizations and the limitations of generation one technologies. Today, AntWorks’ AI-enabled Machine Vision allows organizations to move past the limitations of Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and aspire for straight-through processing and solve their unstructured data challenges.
AntWorks has also developed an integrated code-free next-gen Robotic Process Automation (RPA) suite which seamlessly takes data from the Machine Vision to drive automation in enterprises. Being code-free it focusses on empowering business users and reducing the cost of BOT development and accelerate BOT deployment. The platform comes with Fractal Network-based machine learning which makes AI more affordable for business and easier to implement than traditional Neural Network approaches. Moreover, it doesn’t need an IBM Watson for claims processing!
The Visionary Leaders
After working together in the technology consulting and outsourcing industry for more than two decades, long-time friends and colleagues — Asheesh Mehra, Co-founder & CEO, and Govind Sandhu, Co-founder & CFO — decided to chase their own dreams. Asheesh is an outsourcing expert with over 20 years of cross-industry experience across Asia, Japan, the UK, US, Middle-East and Australia. Govind is an acquisition, mergers, strategy and change management specialist. As a veteran in the industry with experience of over 20 years, he has led one of the largest captive acquisitions and business transformations in India. Over the years, he has worked with TCS, Capita, and WNS.
Equipped with enormous experience and industry expertise, the duo could clearly envision how technology within the services industry could make a phenomenal difference – with automation. And so, began the story of AntWorks in 2015, with a focus on technologies, which would disrupt and transform existing business models. AntWorks was set up with an intention to transform automation and digitization around the world.
Leveraging Machine Learning for Intelligent Automation
AntWorks is driving a revolution in the world of AI using its alternative approach to machine learning. The company is well recognized by leading analysts like Gartner, Forrester, Everest and HfS for its unique approach. AntWorks focuses on marrying deep domain knowledge with AI and Automation to solve specific industry challenges, ranging from automating trade finance for a bank and automating title search of a property for a mortgage insurer to automating tax processing for one of the Big 4s.
The company’s unique position of being the only company with an integrated tech stack allows it to work with deep domain to deliver exponential value to the clients – something it calls a “Deep Automation”. Deep automation is a bouquet of technologies working with deep domain knowledge to solve a business problem. It is different from applying RPA horizontally for shallow automation.
Riding the RPA Wave
Early on, the founders recognized the sizzling hot opportunity that was RPA back in 2015. They, however, realized that there were gaping holes on the path to RPA nirvana. They stared at three immediate problems that urgently needed to get solved. First, the unstructured data and how to make sense of it prior to downstream RPA. The second one was that of the deficit of programming skills available in the market required to publish and maintain a BOT. The third problem they saw was the unused, underutilized potential of RPA.
AntWorks’ leaders envisioned this scenario before the market realized it. Until now RPA sat forlornly in the enterprise, yet another siloed system that dots the typical application landscape of the enterprise.
AntWorks helps BPO companies to solve their challenges, partners with large technology companies like TCS on co-innovation, and product companies like Oracle, Red Hat etc. to stay in tune with their product roadmaps.
But what truly makes AntWorks innovative is its cultural orientation of being a flat organization, the company believes in not taking themselves too seriously as that can inhibit innovation and letting people express themselves. Instead, it focuses on keeping the child alive because children ask the most honest and candid questions!!
The foundational technology of the AntWorks platform ANTstein is unique. It allows downstream RPA to read, understand, contextualize and action any unstructured data. That is its superpower. The partner ecosystem is diverse. AntWorks technology is being bolted not only to RPA but to contract management systems, to cybersecurity systems and even to risk management systems.
The Work Speaks for Itself
AntWorks has received several awards and has been recognized for its distinctive services that address the biggest challenge faced by enterprises today. Some of the notable ones include:
Entered the Robotic Process Automation Forrester Wave 2018 as Contender | Included in Everest Group’s Robotic Process Automation Products Peak Matrix 2018 | Included in HfS Research RPA CX Snapshot by John O Brien | Featured in Everest Group’s report “Artificial Intelligence in Global Services-State of the Market” by Sarah Burnett | Included in Tractica’s “Artificial Intelligence for Healthcare Applications” | Included in the 2017 HfS RPA Provider Blueprint Snapshot being favourably compared to IBM’s Watson by Tom Reuner | Mentioned in Forrester Research note” RPA Operating Models Should be Light and Federated” by Craig Le Clair | Awarded the IDC Digital Disruptor of the Year award 2017.
Comforting the Challenges
Commenting on the challenges, the founders said “sometimes you are ahead of the market and you bring things the market is not ready for even though you can see they will need it in 6-12 months from now. We faced that a little bit in our world. We called out the data challenge 12-18 months ago saying you can’t drive value till you solve for unstructured data and built our Machine Vision to solve for that – today the market has woken up to it. We said the cost of building BOTs can kill the RPA industry – today clients are talking about it behind closed doors and soon you will hear it louder in the streets. We are saying you need to marry deep domain and go deep in your automation, you will see its verticalization coming – write it down now”.
“Educating the market and long sales cycles is a challenge but AntWorks is not unique in that – it’s true for anything unknown and new – the good news is that it’s slow but steady – we are yet to engage with a client and not sign them on,” they added.
Envisioning the Future
AntWorks will continue to innovate and be ahead of the AI and Intelligent Automation curve. The company sees verticalization of the industry as it matures and point solutions that are simple and quick to deploy that solve a specific automation need.
Domain and deep technology will need to weave together to deliver these solutions in the future to a much greater extent. AntWorks sees itself verticalizing in the future as the industry evolves.
While AntWorks started out as a software and services firm, the sheer power of the AntWorks platform has opened up markets both globally and vertically. On its third birthday, AntWorks now focusses on being a pure software company that helps its customers solve their process automation challenges intelligently. In the words of Karen Carpenter, they’ve only just begun.