Startups, like good ideas, are the lifeblood of the knowledge economy. The problem for established organizations is start-ups move at 100 miles an hour, breaking things, questioning the status quo—and their ability to absorb risk is, frankly, off the scale. These are not the qualities associated with the typical large organization. They are heavy on process, (rightly) risk-averse, and the default mode of working is usually in silos. So how do you reconcile the speed and agility of a startup with the risk-free, compliant requirements of the large organization?
The truth is startups get faster traction than internal teams on a problem or a challenge. Look at the rapid pace of transformative change unfolding across the financial services industry: Alliances and commercial configurations between startups and established players have exploded, with APIs and open data initiatives creating a wave of young, hungry Fintech entrepreneur’s actively working across the traditional banking landscape. The result for customers is highly personalized, intuitive products and services. This is why if you head to London, Paris, or New York, you will find Fintech events galore as banks look to co-opt chat-bots, natural language processing or sentiment analysis rapidly into processes.
This intense disruption in financial services is now on the march across every industry as a wave of start-ups lever agile processes and a higher tolerance for risk. This art of the possible sees the rise of “AdTech, HealthTech, Insuretech or RegTech” to name a few, signposting the blend between technology, entrepreneurialism and industry expertise. The process data that flows from customers, stakeholders, partners, employees is rich with meaning and provides a hugely scaled-up understanding of millions of customers in rapid time. And when this insight gets plugged into a bunch of passionate and creative self-starters, free from the crushing institutional inertia of a legacy corporate, then the innovation ignites.
This is why Cognizant has opened Connect in Switzerland. The aim is to focus on enabling “proof of deployment” rather than “proof of concept” for corporates and startups alike. Connect is for startups that are about to scale—not just running innovation experiments between startups and corporates, getting excited, and then failing to industrialize. The Connect offering and the methodology offer startups qualified multi-country access to customer spending and access to rapid, scalable revenue. Solution deployment through Connect speeds up adoption scale for a startup and maintains compliant, quality control for an organization. It’s a win/win for both sides.