Innovate What’s Next: How Living Labs Brings Ideas to Life

BrandPost By Guruprasad NV, Shyamala Sadananda, Mandar Joshi, Jignesh Desai, and Imtiaz (Taz) Sayed
Apr 06, 20226 mins

Partnership helps enterprises not only speed digital innovation, but also become ready for the future.

Credit: ipopba

Our world today is experiencing an extremely social, connected, competitive and technology-driven business environment. If anything, the past few years have shown us the levels of uncertainty we are facing. Predicting the next big threat or the next big opportunity is becoming increasingly difficult, especially when challenged by a plethora of technology options, fierce competition, talent-sourcing shortages and limited budgets.

The race to embrace digital technologies to compete and stay relevant in emerging business models is compelling organizations to shift focus. Enterprises are increasingly moving towards bringing together a human-centric experience with innovations led by cutting-edge technologies. Large enterprises that have traditionally been risk-averse are now adopting new approaches such as investing in design and innovation studios, partnering with startups for niche capabilities, and gaining early access to technology through strategic partnerships with hyper-scalers. They are nurturing agile and elite ecosystems in an effort to outpace the competition and deliver tangible returns on the innovation investments. 

While enterprises invest in innovation, key challenges such as successful sustenance, ROI realization, scaling and accelerating still remain. 

Accelerate Innovation

Innovation should be encouraged and embraced, however, there is generally an unrecognized need to systematically manage the innovation process. This includes closely monitoring emerging trends, foreseeing market threats, and generating business opportunities in every aspect of work. The ability to swiftly explore and experiment with emerging technologies addresses common delays in large-scale technology adoption across the enterprise. This not only supports the acceleration of digital innovation but also prompts customers to become future-ready. 

To accelerate and stay at the forefront of digital innovation, CIOs and IT departments need to:

  • Prioritize business outcomes over technology transformation
  • Foster a culture of innovation across the enterprise 
  • Continuously evaluate opportunities and threats in a sustained, systematic manner
  • Facilitate experimentation, rapid prototyping, and iterative learning
  • Access niche technologies through external ecosystems and partner programs
  • Pilot and scale deployment on successful outcomes

Infosys Living Labs and AWS Collaboration 

Over the past few years, Infosys and AWS have invested in and focused extensively on creating purposeful services to drive innovation for their customers. We are centered around co-creating with customers and promoting a systematic and scalable innovation approach to solve real-world customers problems—similar to Toyota leveraging Infosys Cobalt to modernize its vehicle data warehouse into a next-generation data lake on AWS.  

Infosys Living labs is a set of well-orchestrated innovation services for future-proofing customer businesses and de-risking their emerging technology transformations. It emphasizes the Infosys and AWS cultures of innovation, and identifies the right challenges to solve to deliver maximum benefits to the customer. Infosys Living Labs in collaboration with AWS is an endeavor to use digital innovations to address complex business problems for our customers. 

Living Labs brings together a culture of exploration and innovation, design, and emerging technology to foster joint innovation with customers. For example, Infosys and AWS built a joint strategy for quantum computing applications on circuit simulators and quantum hardware technologies using Amazon Braket. This enables researchers and developers to experiment and study complex computational problems as quantum technologies continue to evolve. The use of Amazon Braket by Infosys aims to get businesses ready for a future where quantum computers will impact business outcomes. 

Approaches like design thinking help empathize with real business problems and customer needs. This model helps iterate rapid innovation, failing fast and learning from those failures by sourcing direct feedback from end users. The involvement of end users in the process makes the ideas and solutions developed within Living Labs much more relevant.

The Infosys Living Labs program heavily leverages an ecosystem of global startups, universities, venture capitalists, and large technology alliance partners.

The Differentiators

Infosys employs the following key innovation services to create successful customer Living Labs programs:

Emerging Technology-Based Incubation: A cornerstone of Infosys innovation services, Living Labs provides an incubation environment for first-of-its-kind experiments, contextualization of homegrown Infosys Intellectual Properties (IPs), and external partner support to rapidly build minimum viable experiments in short iterative sprints. This is where ideas get transformed into business solutions. 

Startup and External Ecosystems: Infosys Innovation Network (IIN) is a well-orchestrated partnership platform with 230+ (and still adding) startups curated after carefully scanning through 2,000+ startups across geographies, technologies, and business domains. Infosys constantly listens for, scans, and identifies horizon-3 technology opportunities, threats, and relevant global startups that best fit customer problems.

Global Innovation Hubs: Infosys leverages its 12+ global innovation hubs to showcase the latest industry and emerging technology-led innovations. They contain maker spaces, which are physical-digital immersive experiences within their hubs across several industry segments. In addition to leveraging innovation for business purposes, the innovation lab is also a great lever for attracting and retaining talent across niche technologies.

Culture of Innovation: Infosys builds a culture of innovation in customer enterprises by establishing a joint innovation governance council, along with leading industry and technology advisors. Infosys brings expertise to conduct hackathons, ideation workshops, and murmuration campaigns in customer organizations to generate ideas from a grassroots level.

Large Scale Implementation: Infosys is a global IT giant and market leader with 40+ years of vast experience in implementing large and complex programs. This helps global teams to scale experiments to pilot projects and pilots to large deployments.

Industry Innovations

Here are some examples of how Infosys has helped different sectors to innovate:

  • Transformed the workforce by gamifying mundane delivery tasks, nurturing transparency in rewards systems, and improving employee motivation
  • Reimagined financial savings through an immersive virtual reality game for millennials
  • Conceptualized an in-store vision analytics solution to track customer behavior
  • Envisioned a micro-savings retirement scheme 
  • Solved commissions, disputes, and reconciliation issues with third-party vendors using blockchain-led solutions

More than 100 enterprises have leveraged Living Labs to accelerate their digital innovation journey.

Navigate Your Next Innovation

Infosys and AWS work together to set up AWS Living Labs for their customers. In addition to providing infrastructure as a service, this collaboration brings together the best of orchestrated innovation services from Infosys Living Labs, cloud-based enterprise transformation services from Infosys Cobalt, and AWS’ technology stack, which includes emerging technologies such as quantum computing, blockchain, data analytics, AI/ML, and IoT. 

Infosys Living Labs helps customers solve business problems with their emerging technology solutions and service offerings. Along with ecosystem partners such as AWS, Infosys is rolling out these solutions extensively to all our customers, helping them navigate through their next innovation journey.

About the authors:

Guruprasad NV, AVP, is the Senior Principal Technology Architect at Infosys.

Shyamala Sadananda is the Senior Principal Technology Architect at Infosys.

Mandar Joshi is the Industry Principal at Infosys.

Jignesh Desai is the WW Migration Leader at AWS.

Imtiaz (Taz) Sayed is the WW Analytics Tech Leader at AWS.