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CIO100: Firms Banking on New Technology To Improve Products And Services

Organisations in Africa are banking on new technologies including Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to enhance customer experience, industry experts say

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CIO100: Firms Banking on New Technology To Improve Products And Services
L-R: John Kamara, Entrepreneur Afyarekod and Adalabs, Jane Mwai, Chief Information Officer Standard Chartered Bank, Kris Senanu, Chief Enterprise Business Officer and Rose Muturi, Managing Director East Africa Branch International at the Safaricom Guru Series held at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort and Spa on Friday [Photo/Arthur Kuwashima]

Organisations in Africa are banking on new technologies including Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to enhance customer experience, industry experts who spoke at the inaugural Safaricom Business Guru Series reveal.

The monthly event which brings together experts to discuss how technology affects their organisations was launched on Friday at the CIO100 Symposium and Awards happening at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort and Spa in Mombasa County.

Kris Senanu, Chief Enterprise Business Officer at Safaricom said the Telco was in the process of remodelling its business model to focus more on technology solutions in the future.

“For the next few years, we want to move from being a telco to a techno. We’re leveraging on technology to build an eco-system where we can support SMEs and offer convenience to the end-user,” he said.

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He added that, “Superior customer experience comes from the ability to give the customer an easy way to engage with you. Ultimately, companies that take advantage of technology will come out on top in enhancing customers’ experience”.

Jane Mwai, Chief Information Officer at Standard Chartered Bank said, “With our digital bank, we have deployed a lot of machine learning, AI and APIs with third parties as well just to make sure we can have the products that our customers want.”

Rose Muturi, Managing Director East Africa Branch International said the finance app has invested in new technology to aid in data gathering and disbursement of funds to their customers.

“We use machine learning to remove the bias in lending decisions. We use a lot of data to make decisions and all of it is automatic. We use data gathered by AI to launch into markets because it makes decision making easier” he said.

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John Kamara Entrepreneur Afyarekod and Adalabs stated that technology has enabled the organisation to be more effective by making them customer centric.

The experts called on a favourable regulatory environment to allow them to take deploy new technologies in their organisations.

Digital transformation at organisational and industrial level has been escalated by the COVID-19 pandemic as customers moved online and the firms responded in turn. Companies have been forced to come up with digital or digitally enhanced offerings to meet the new demands of clients. There is the need for firms to address emerging issues associated with these transformation such as  digital divide, cybersecurity threats and data protection among others.

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