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With the advent of tools like AI, IT would be focusing on optimal usage of the massive data

Surhit Bhattacharyya, Head-IT - McLeod Russel India (MRIL)


“McLeod Russel India Ltd. (MRIL) is the largest producer of tea in the private sector with estates spread across the States of Assam and Bengal in India and in Uganda, Rwanda and Vietnam.  To get visibility across the operations and to bring in better control Management depends on the depth of the IT services.


 As we matured our processes (ERP, Add on Modules and BI and Analytics) the Management is increasingly convinced about the power of IT to bring down costs on one hand and engaging with customers on the other. It was also noticed that with the right amount of internal controls facilitated by the IT processes our company was able to bring down human interventions which further reduced costs.  Understanding of the customer’s requirement of value added services allowed the organization to add economic value to the transaction both internally as well as to customers.


McLeod Russel is a plantation company in the organised sector where labour related costs make up around 65% of total costs. The laws governing the sector have put the organized tea sector at considerable disadvantage to the unorganised sector.


MRIL realised that micro understandings of the leakages in various operations are key to control costs. We have introduced AI driven tools to understand exceptions and automated immediate action on the results. We have not yet deployed Cognitive computing but limited to use of AI only.


In critical business functions involving multivariate variables it would be beneficial to deploy cognitive computing under the holistic AI driven approach. However the organization’s digital maturity level would be a critical barometer before deploying the technologies.


The question will be – would there be pure IT function as we move forward. Even today we find that in house IT functions are actually custodians of processes who are expected to understand the ripple effect of any process change across the organization.


IT or rather process custodians would be expected to look under the hood of processes and clean up redundancies within the overall function. With the advent of tools under the overarching umbrella of AI which encompasses Big Data and analytics IT would be focussing on optimal usage of the vast amount of data that are being generated through the different systems day in and day out.”


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