Press release

The Hackett Group Names Bayer & IBM 2019 Digital Award Winners; Companies on the Cutting Edge of Smart Automation, Robotic Process Automation, Cognitive Computing and Analytics

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The Hackett Group (NASDAQ: HCKT) today announced that Bayer and IBM are
the winners of its 2019 Digital Awards, which spotlight companies that
are on the cutting edge of digital transformation, including smart
automation, robotic process automation (RPA), cognitive computing and
advanced analytics.

Bayer won the award in the advanced analytics category for its
Statistical Demand Forecasting System, while IBM won in the smart
automation category for its Cognitive Support Platform. Four other
companies were also recognized as finalists: HCL/Manchester United
Football Club, HP, IBM and Indecomm.

The Hackett Group’s Digital Awards spotlight and celebrate companies on
the cutting edge of using smart automation and advanced analytics to
solve business problems.

“Disruptive digital technologies continue to take great strides in terms
of impact, affordability, and usability,” said Paul Morrison, Managing
Director, The Hackett Group. “We see companies from all sectors making
major changes to their back, middle and front offices with tools such as
RPA, cognitive automation and advanced analytics. For many enterprises
these changes are initial pilots. But for others, such as our winners
and finalists today, these are mature and massive changes that can
enable breakthroughs like providing proactive and super-fast and
personalized services to tens of millions of customers, or freeing up
talent from hundreds of thousands of hours of wasted admin work.
Efficiency in the form of cost reduction and transactional automation
are still the primary focus for many organizations in their improvement
plans. However these awards show that more and more companies are using
these rapidly implemented, cost-effective and disruptive approaches to
drive wider business outcomes in the areas of effectiveness and
experience – not least increased revenue, reduced risk, customer
satisfaction and service innovation.”

“This year’s Digital Awards winners and finalists are showing that the
scale and impact of both smart automation and advanced analytics
continues to grow,” said Morrison. “They also point to a growing
overlap, and the accelerating impact of artificial intelligence on both
areas. Increasingly at The Hackett Group we see the overlapping and
reinforcing impact of these 3 trends or ‘3As’ – automation, analytics
and AI. While they come from different directions – automation is
underpinned by process improvement, analytics has grown out of data
science and AI is a computer science driven discipline – we increasingly
see these three digital levers being pulled by company initiatives at
the same time, not in isolation. We think this will be a key coming
together for digital business in the years ahead.”

The winners and finalists for 2019, and some information on their
projects, are as follows:

Bayer – Analytics Finalist – Statistical Demand Forecasting System –
Faster and simpler ways of working are key elements of the
digitalization journey at Bayer. An automated prediction platform was
developed to leverage statistics and provide independent cross
functional usage with a low-total-cost of ownership. The platform
further broadens Bayer’s business analytics capabilities from
descriptive to predictive/augmented analytics. The solution has been
industrialized into the enterprise business data warehouse
infrastructure and has significantly improved speed and accuracy of
forecasting and scenario-based planning. The new platform has enabled
Bayer to fully achieve state-of-the-art, automated predictive analytics,
all inhouse! For example, the operational sales forecasts in Supply
Chain & Logistics can now be generated automatically with adaptions and
enrichments made to specific business processes as needed. Overall,
divisional supply chain planners in the countries and regions can run
the forecasting process in a more efficient and focused way. Combined
with external cost reductions the solution enables significant
efficiencies and improvements in forecast accuracy which in turn will
help improve inventory positions and product availability.

IBM – Smart Automation Winner – Cognitive Support Platform
IBM’s Cognitive Support Platform powered by IBM Watson technology is
transforming its ability to support clients. IBM currently supports over
7,000 products across 170 countries investing millions of person hours
each year. The system is designed to help IBM understand problems,
generate insights, and take action to resolve client issues. A key part
of the platform is a “Continuous Learning Loop” where cognitive
components listen to client interactions, collect feedback and learn how
to better provide advice and act to resolve issues. The platform uses
weighting factors to facilitate case management prioritization, enabling
support engineers to quickly see and understand their workload and know
how the client cases should be prioritized as they begin their workday.
Cognitive routing and assignment capabilities predict the expertise
required to resolve a case, then matches that with the skills, capacity,
and availability of a support engineer. In addition a chatbot has
enabled clients in some areas to address many of their issues via

HCL Technologies – Analytics Finalist–Reimagines Business
through Digital
Manchester United, a 140-year old
football club with a global fan base of 659 million, embarked on a
digital transformation journey with HCL that recorded exponential fan
engagement within 6 months – the Manchester United Official app reached
number one in the App Store’s sports category download charts in 68
markets around the world. The app was also in the top ten within sports
category in 123 markets. The Digital Experience Platform developed by
HCL, web site and app offer a rich, engaging, real-time multi-channel
experience as close as possible to what fans receive at the stadium. A
key element of the platform’s value lies in millions of data points
created by the club’s global fanbase as they engage with the platform.
Advanced analytics enabled the platform to recognize patterns and trends
along with predictions in fan behavior by geography/demography, enabling
both club and sponsors to fine tune their campaigns and value offerings.
HCL’s digital platform integrates multiple industry standard products,
services and applications into a cloud native, auto-scalable
architecture that has been configured to support the club’s global fan
base, Technology and partner: HCL.

HP – Finalist – Deal Pricing – This project addresses the need to
provide timely quotes to our channel network with specific pricing needs
and requirements on a daily basis. The project leverages intelligent
robotic process automation and machine learning/natural language
processing to automate special pricing. It improves the time to quote,
accuracy of the quote and significantly improves the likelihood of the
quote being converted to an order. To date, the solution has been
successfully deployed across three countries and is seeing strong
success rates for the end-to-end robotics solution and the natural
language processing output, covering a large volume of deals processed
through the robots. The other key benefit this automation provides
relates to the impact on revenue and as the solution is leveraged across
other countries, HP is anticipating improved accuracy and faster
turn-around times in the deal pricing quotation process.

IBM – Finalist – Enterprise Operations & Service Automation
Center of Excellence –
The automation effort enables 8,000
order-to-cash practitioners within IBM to improve speed, quality, and
client experience as they develop pricing and financing scenarios,
propose contracts, create contracts and orders, register and manage
contracts, create billing and collect cash. With more than 300 largely
disparate legacy systems, databases and applications, processes remained
fragmented resulting in a lot of manual, repetitive tasks which limit
the practitioner’s opportunity to spend their time on higher value
activities and tasks. To address this issue, an Automation Center of
Excellence was created to enable the creation of a digital workforce to
perform manual, repetitive tasks so that we can increase speed and
quality and focus on being truly client-centric. BotCamps sessions were
used to train staff, aligning capability with demand, to use BluePrism
robotic process automation tools, and a total of 469 people were trained
in 18 locations across the globe over 2017 and 2018. The effort has
already delivered 360,000 hours in productivity improvements in
order-to-cash across three geographies – Americas, Asia, and EMEA.
Seller satisfaction has increased, turnaround time has been cut in half,
process quality has improved, and additional data is providing better
insight for intelligent workflows that leverage multiple automation
technologies to achieve business outcomes. Technology and partners used
include: BluePrism RPA and Cloud infrastructure.

Indecomm – Smart Automation Finalist – Redefining Mortgage Processing
with AntWorks –
As a leading SaaS-based technology and services
provider to the mortgage industry, Indecomm Global Services sought an
Integrated Automation Platform (IAP) to enable easy flow through,
organizing, extracting, validating, standardizing data and documents. In
collaboration with AntWorks, Indecomm developed an industry
point-solution by deploying a full-stack IAP with Cognitive Machine
Reading (CMR), Intelligent Automation and AI/ ML tools to classify and
read contracts, extract unstructured data fields automatically, and send
the output file to the client. Turnaround time has cut to less than
half, and quality levels and customer satisfaction improved
significantly. Cost savings were 25% in 1st year, progressively nearing
50% as the solution goes up the maturity curve. Indecomm is repurposing
its existing staffing model of 1000 to support twice the current levels
of business in the next 2-3 years. Technology and partners used include:

The Hackett Group’s Digital Awards were established by Aecus in 2014 as
the Aecus Automation Awards. Aecus was acquired by The Hackett Group in
May 2017.

About The Hackett Group

Hackett Group
 (NASDAQ: HCKT) is an intellectual property-based
strategic consultancy and leading enterprise benchmarking and best
practices digital transformation firm to global companies, offering
digital transformation including robotic process automation, smart
automation and enterprise cloud application implementation. Services
include business transformation, enterprise analytics, working
capital management
 and global
business services
. The Hackett Group also provides dedicated
expertise in business strategy, operations, finance, human capital
management, strategic sourcing, procurement and information technology,
including its award-winning Oracle and SAP practices.

The Hackett Group has completed more than 16,500 benchmarking studies
with major corporations and government agencies, including 93% of the
Dow Jones Industrials, 89% of the Fortune 100, 83% of the DAX 30 and 57%
of the FTSE 100. These studies drive its Best Practice Intelligence
Center which includes the firm’s benchmarking metrics, best
practices repository and best practice configuration guides and process
flows, which enable The Hackett Group’s clients and partners to achieve
world-class performance.

More information on The Hackett Group is available at:,
or by calling (770) 225-3600.

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