Madhav Bhadra, Director, AQM Software Testing Lab, shares his vision on taking AQM to the new heights and the Government’s ambitious initiatives like Make in India and Digital India. In an interview to Vishwas Dass of Elets News Network (ENN), Bhadra underlines how ‘Testing’ plays a critical role to ensure functional, efficient, secured and hassle-free systems. Excerpts:
Please share an overview of AQM. What kind of products the company is offering to its customers?
AQM is a Software Testing Lab with domain expertise of Banking Financial Services, Insurance (BFSI) and e-Governance segment. Testing is one of the critical IT governance and risk mitigation activities for ensuring functional, efficient, secured and hassle-free systems and thereby greater customer satisfaction. We offer solutions for testing of Core Systems, Channel Systems, Digital Initiatives, Mobility, Big Data initiatives, Cloud computing. Our vision is to create happiness for every stakeholder through testing. A functional, efficient, secured and hassle-free technology brings happiness for customers of banks and thereby for banks. We also help in automating testing activities and thereby ensuring better returns on investment for our customers. Our solutions help our customers in ‘Faster Go to Market’ with new products as well as for upgrades and changes in existing products which are inevitable in current competitive market scenario.
Are you catering to the banking and financial services sector? Please elaborate. What opportunities do you see in the banking, insurance and financial services domain?
Yes, we help banks and financial service sector in three ways. One, when IT systems are acquired. Second, when systems are upgraded. Third, when systems are constantly changed which are called BAU (Business As Usual) changes. We help banks and financial service providers in ensuring that when they go live with new systems or upgrades or BAU changes, their systems remain functional, efficient, safe and hassle-free. We see opportunities in the segment of mobile, analytics, customer facing technologies and cloud computing. Besides, Systems used by BFSI players are becoming seamless with the use of APIs. We specialise in API testing and help our customers to roll out defect free seamless systems.
What is your strategy to stay ahead of your competitors? What is the USP of your products that gives them an edge over other products in the market?
Our domain focused approach in creating solutions for our customers helps in partnering with customers in solving their business problems instead of just another service provider. We have created reusable components through our research and expertise which takes our customers at higher maturity level from day one. We give our customers guaranteed SLAs that puts us also into a mandatory continuous innovation mode so as to generate the guaranteed value for our customers.
The Government is giving a lot of emphasis on Make in India, Stand Up India, Start Up India and Digital India initiatives to boost investment and creation of jobs. What is your view about such steps?
Brand India and private participation are the visible changes that the Government of India is pushing across sectors. Government’s commitment to improve business environment and create jobs are visible. Make in India, Stand Up India, Start Up India and Digital India are infrastructures, that are parallel to express highways, for a digital economy. They will result into lots of technological innovations and jobs down the line.
How important is latest technology for the banking sector to improve customer services? What more needs to be done to revolutionise the BFSI sector?
We need to divide market into three segments to find an answer to this query.
Served Market: Served markets are those customers who have access to banking as well as right technology to optimally utilise the innovation in banking products and services. This segment is amidst of an innovation upheaval. New challengers in market (both new banks as well as non-bankers offering innovative products mounted on banking services) and old champions (existing banks) both are investing heavily into technology to gain increasing market of served ones. The speed, safety and ease of use are the winning factors and hence it is unthinkable to march forward without technology. Served market will soon see extensive use of artificial intelligence and robotic products which in turn will bring competitiveness, consistency and pro-activeness.
Underserved Market: Underserved markets are those customers who have partial access to technology and partial access to banking (Urban low value customers). The key to successfully serve this market is lower transaction cost, and that’s exactly the technology will enable banks to achieve.
Unserved Market: Unserved markets are the rural interiors where customers neither have access to banking nor technology. This is purely investment market. Invest today and reap benefits tomorrow. Government is creating digital infrastructure for banking players to reach those customers and invest. Sometimes they do voluntarily as visionaries and sometimes they are forced to do it through policies. Technology can help in reducing the gestation period between investing in this market and returns from the market. However, the size of this market is so big in India in terms of potential customers that visionary players would reap the benefits soon. Technology would be enabler.
What is STQC approved testing for e-Governance solution testing? Please demystify.
Technology solutions under e-Governance plan of Government of India require testing of solutions while rolling out such solutions in production environment so as to ensure that e-governance solutions are qualitative, reliable, efficient, secured and meets quality standards. Before March 2014, STQC was the only agency which used to conduct such testing. AQM became first approved testing laboratory by STQC, DEITY, Government of India which is authorised to test and issue quality reports for e-Governance solutions.
Our e-Governance solution testing services can be consumed by government departments as well as solution providers. We provide end to end services for STQC testing and certification.