Man working with data

Acuvate Case Study

Acuvate helps customers gain rich data insights that accelerate digital transformation with Microsoft Analytics and AI solutions

All businesses want to get the most out of their data, but modernizing can be difficult

Businesses need advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning to maximize the potential of their data, but developing these skills is expensive and cumbersome.

Finding a technology partner in Acuvate and Microsoft

Microsoft partner Acuvate helps customers modernize their operations and get the most out of their data through innovative technology and deep industry expertise.

Accelerated digital transformation

Acuvate helps customers visualize and then realize their digital transformation, delivering meaningful results such as improved worker safety and efficiency.

Acuvate has a mission to accelerate their customers’ digital transformation with analytics and artificial intelligence (AI). As a provider of technology solutions, the company helps enterprise customers uncover the “art of the possible” by helping them visualize, then realize opportunities to transform their business by maximizing the value of data.

The company has a deep Microsoft focus and is a strong believer in the power of data to transform people and companies. Inspired by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s vision for the democratization of AI, Acuvate is continually exploring ways to make the insights from AI accessible by anyone, not just the data scientists. To date, Acuvate has developed a number of AI accelerator solutions, such as BotCore, Compass, and Mesh, built on the Microsoft AI platform, that provide a path for customers to speed up the time to value of their data and AI investments.

As the “world’s computer,” Microsoft Azure Analytics and AI services are transforming industries, helping businesses make their products and services more intelligent with the most comprehensive set of analytics services from data ingestion, storage, data warehousing, machine learning (ML), and business intelligence.

Delivering more meaningful data

Helping customers to do more with data through business intelligence and analytics has been an essential practice at Acuvate since its earliest days. With AI, company leaders saw a tremendous opportunity to expand on the value delivered through their data analytics solutions. Abhishek Shanbhag, Acuvate Practice Head of Digital and AI explains, “With cloud and AI both having become more mainstream, organizations gained a more agile, cost-effective method for building solutions that previously would have been very expensive.”

Machine learning-based solutions also provide an additional benefit—the more data that customers add to models, the better the results—from understanding customer behaviors to helping employees more easily achieve day-to-day tasks, to predicting outcomes.

In an age where every company is digitizing their business and producing increasing amounts and varieties of data, getting a handle on that data and extracting meaning from it has become mission critical. “Today, people talk about how data has become the new oil. For most of our customers, though, it’s in a crude form—it lacks refinement. Our task is to help them see how they can drive value and then turn it into true oil,” notes Hemanth Kumar, VP of North American Operations, Acuvate.

Accelerating time-to-value

Acuvate’s strategy starts by opening customers’ eyes to the opportunities to transform their business by getting more out of their data. Often, this extends to teaching customers what their new (and sometimes existing) Microsoft investments are capable of achieving.

Acuvate then provides customers a fast path to creating analytics and data solutions through its pre-built AI accelerators that range from chatbots and digital assistants (BotCore), to intelligent intranets (Mesh), to industry-specific solutions such as trade promotion optimization solutions for consumer packaged goods and retail companies (Compass).

As part of its commitment to making technology more accessible, Acuvate also assists customers in skilling up their own workforces, for example, by helping them set up their own AI and data Centers of Excellence (CoE). These Centers allow customers to more rapidly scale training, drive internal adoption, and lower costs, as well as eliminate the guesswork and experimentation that goes into running new enterprise initiatives. Acuvate has also drawn from its own learnings to create an AI framework that includes checklists, planning templates, and tools to further accelerate and scale customers’ technology journeys.

A decade-long partnership gets even better

Microsoft analytics technologies have been central to Acuvate solutions since the company’s founding over ten years ago. Earlier in its history, the company’s approach to data might have included SQL Server data warehouses and Power BI. Today, that list now includes Microsoft Azure Synapse Analytics and Microsoft Azure AI.

“As far as our customers are concerned, Microsoft is the top choice, and in many cases the only choice, for some of the largest enterprises in the world,” says Abhishek. “They really value the kind of security, transparency, and complete control they get over their data when they use the Microsoft Azure cloud and Microsoft Azure ML and AI services.”

That close relationship has enabled Acuvate to have deep access to the Microsoft technology community and product teams, and to be a frequent early adopter of new technologies, routinely accessing preview versions of products before they become generally available, working with customers on pilots to uncover new opportunities for value.

“We deeply value how being partner-focused is part of Microsoft’s DNA. No matter what part of the world you engage in, every single Microsoft person we speak with is extremely partner-focused, and extremely partner-friendly. Whether you are in Seattle or Germany, it’s the same experience,” adds Abhishek.

“Acuvate is emerging as a strong Microsoft AI partner,” said Gavriella Schuster, Microsoft CVP, One Commercial Partner. “Together we are bringing our joint value proposition to solve customers’ business and technology problems and deliver tangible business outcomes.”

“We deeply value how being partner-focused is part of Microsoft’s DNA. No matter what part of the world you engage in, every single Microsoft person we speak with is extremely partner-focused, and extremely partner-friendly. Whether you are in Seattle or Germany, it’s the same experience.”

—Abhishek Shanbhag, Practice Head of Digital and AI, Acuvate

Delivering joint value to customers

Acuvate's focus on accelerating digital transformation with a holistic analytics and AI value proposition to deliver superior customer value across industries has been recognized by Microsoft several times through its AI Inner Circle Partner Program, as a solution provider, and more.

In the public sector, the New York City Department of Environmental Protection is working with Acuvate to develop several innovative use cases with Microsoft Azure Synapse Analytics, chatbots, AI, and machine learning to accelerate their digital transformation.

Many oil and gas companies have engaged Acuvate to improve worker safety by using vision algorithms to detect and predict workplace hazards before they occur. Acuvate has also deployed voice assistants at these firms to accelerate documentation by scientists who can simply talk to their digital assistants and gather insights away from the keyboard, and drive greater sharing of insights, particularly for new scientists coming on board.

Many consumer goods companies have turned to Acuvate for help in driving greater productivity, engagement, and satisfaction for their people and customers through digital assistants. Internally, chatbots, which are integrated with all major internal systems from ERP to HR and travel, help more than 150,000 employees find answers to their questions or quickly locate information. Externally, many of them are launching digital brand assistants for each of their global consumer brands to help consumers with product questions or receive recommendations based on their needs. For example, the assistant can help a customer select the best hair care product for them and suggest styling options. With augmented reality, it can even model new styles for the customer.

“Acuvate is emerging as a strong Microsoft AI partner. Together we are bringing our joint value proposition to solve customers’ business and technology problems and deliver tangible business outcomes.”

—Gavriella Schuster, One Commercial Partner CVP, Microsoft

The road ahead

When Acuvate leaders look ahead at what’s next in their journey with Microsoft, they get excited about the opportunities they see. Already, the company is trying out new solutions, leveraging new products such as Forms Recognizer, Composer, Azure Synapse Analytics, and preview technologies like Conversation Learner and Project Cortex. Early results are very encouraging—“the possibilities are endless,” says Kumar.

Acuvate is also staying close to Microsoft advancements in areas like natural language processing, and other areas where they see increasing customer interest, for developing solutions such as speech-driven applications. Additionally, the company is looking to further tailor its assets and learnings in specific industries such as pharma, consumer goods, and oil and gas, to solve unique domain-related problems.

Through these efforts, Acuvate looks forward to continuing to deepen its Microsoft partnership, leveraging insights from their customers’ latest challenges to help shape the next generation of technologies and solutions.

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