Oct 12, 2017

TIPS FROM TOP - “US Healthcare Industry” by Mr. Ashish Chandra, Associate Director, United Health Group


On Saturday, 7th October, 2017, the Industrial and Management Engineering department of IIT Kanpur had the opportunity to host a very insightful and informative seminar by Mr. Ashish Chandra on “Healthcare Systems and Analytics”.

The seminar commenced with Mr. Chandra introducing himself. An alumnus of IIT Kanpur, Mr. Chandra has worked in various top tiered Pharma and Healthcare companies, and has 12 years of experience as a decision scientist. Currently, he is the Associate Director of United Health Group, prior to which he had worked for seven and half years in Market RX.

Mr. Ashish started the seminar by talking about what is healthcare. Then he explained the various models in healthcare provision: National Health Services - Beveridge Model, Social Health Insurance - Bismarck Model, Community Based Health Insurance, Voluntary Health Insurance, and ‘Out of pocket Payments’. In each of the models he talked about the revenue sources, groups covered, pooling organizations, and care provision.

Mr. Chandra then went on to describe the US health care system which is an amalgamation of two major models - the government sponsored program, and the private sponsored program. In the USA, healthcare is a very sensitive issue due to the exorbitant medical cost. Elections are fought over this and this is one of the key constituents in political manifestos.  The concept of ‘Over investment but less effectiveness’ was discussed.

In very simple terms, the speaker talked about the various opportunities to make healthcare more affordable and effective. These include - migration from fee-for-service to new provider payment models, consolidation of healthcare stakeholders, widespread use of data and analytics in patient care, spending and utilization for specialty pharmaceuticals, Medicaid expansion due to healthcare reform, migration to value-oriented healthcare marketplace, growth and performance of accountable care organizations, role of technology in patient engagement, and increasing patient cost sharing. Mr. Chandra also talked about the plans of Google to launch a pill that will revolutionize diagnoses.

Mr. Chandra explained how the healthcare system is shifting towards precision medicine, where doctors will potentially be replaced by computers, and will make analytics and data driven decisions. Artificial intelligence, machine learning and big data will empower physicians, scientists and patients alike with the latest, most accurate clinical understanding in real time.

The seminar was very interactive and it was a great opportunity to learn about the health care industry, its current situation, and the direction in future. Mr. Chandra also advised the audience on how to prepare for future corporate life. It is imperative to keep learning and keep improving every day if we wish to make a mark in this world.


Oct 11, 2017

Tips from Top – "Taming Technology for New Age Brand Marketing”. Mr. Rahul Khurana, Client Servicing Director, Geometry Global





This Sunday, was anything but a usual day at IIT Kanpur. The ever enthusiastic students of the MBA course, learnt some clever ways of how brands are leveraging technology to create enduring connections with consumers.  Rahul Khurana, CSD, Geometry Global took an insightful session on 'Experiential Marketing' showcasing some of the best and award winning work and some compelling case studies.

He highlighted how consumer experience is set to redefine marketing and the way we have moved from mere encounters to transforming engagements worth leaving an impact on the purchase decision journey. His diverse experience on working on some of the most iconic brand campaigns translated into a stimulating session for the IITians and left them asking for more. He asserted that the industry has moved beyond the difference of above the line or below and how the client's appetite has evolved to seek a holistic solution. 

Apart from sharing some captivating ideation triggers and affiliated distinctive global cases, he brought alive the role techno managers - marketing professionals with engineering background like the current management batch at IIT, will play in paving a way for embracing the new era of marketing innovations. Data, artificial intelligence and technology has not just enabled marketers to seek measurable and definitive results but have almost killed the old ways marketing dollars were spent. 

With a hope that technology is here to stay and is set to change the way how brands interact with consumers, the very enthusiastic IIT batch is set to unleash the power of technology combined with their marketing prowess, in their careers ahead.


Sep 27, 2017

The Dawn of A New Beginning - MBA Batch 2017-19

“Opportunities multiply as they are seized.” -Sun Tzu




‘I am an IITian’, even after two months here at IIT Kanpur this one line still fills our heart with excitement. Each one among the 54 students here who have started the journey into the MBA programme of IIT Kanpur, batch of 2017-19, feels that pride and with that equally realizes the responsibility it carries.

We started our journey here on 20th July. Meeting our batch mates for the first time still feels thrilling. Though we knew each other through the whatsapp/facebook group that was created by our seniors to make our registration process as smooth as possible. We were given several assignments before the registration to give us an inkling of the idea of how life at IIT Kanpur is going to be. Assignments were planned in a way such that we get a hands-on experience on case studies, presentations, group activities and article reading. We began burning the midnight oil as a precursor to actually doing it, and how! These assignments united us all as a team and we got to know about the strengths of us all, while developing bonds that will carry on the rest of our lives, if not the next two years alone. Here at campus we were given certain treasure hunt tasks to make our bonds even stronger, to compartmentalize working as a team. The icing on the cake was the way seniors interacted with us to make us feel at home with each student being assigned a mentor to help him/her with the issues in hostel or maybe studies. There remained no question unanswered and no qualm unaddressed.

We are a batch of 54 students who represent pan-India cross culture ethos here within the campus, giving us glimpses across the large subcontinent. There are students from Punjab, Delhi, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh from the north, Maharashtra and Gujrat from the west, Kolkata and Chattisgarh from the east, Madhya Pradesh from the centre and Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka from the south. Living with mates of such diverse culture creates a really exciting environment where we get a look into the very adorable quirks and admirable idiosyncrasies. The average age of the students in our batch is 23.5 years, with an approximate female to male ratio of 1:4. Our batch has huge academic diversity of students, with some having work experience of more than 40 months to students who just completed his/her undergrad working together on the same project, which indeed creates a good amalgam of freshness and experience. Average work experience of the batch is 18.3 months with experience in reputed companies such as Amazon, OYO, TCS, Hexagon, Accenture, Genpact, IMS Health, Feedback Infra, ISMT Limited, RIL, MRF, ZTE, EValueserve, JSW Steel, DENSO, Binary, Semantics, L&T, Infosys, Sopra. Students have worked in domain of management, internet securities, risk management, mechanical design, maintenance management, business analysis, technical training, marketing and Quality assurance.

Managing work and academia with other co-curricular activities is very important in life and students from our batch have mastered the art of balancing these various facets. There are students who have huge experience in public speaking, to students who have played multiple sports at different competitive levels and some with diploma in Tabla. Students with fascination in standup comedy not just lighten their own stress but also act as anxiety busters for each of their batch mates, OAT being the stage for such relaxing moments of jokes and music. Some specialize in dramatics and extempore, others indulge in competitive sports for the mind such as contraption, Rubik’s cube solving and chess Living in this lush green campus, out of the individual comfort zone, is itself a joyful but adventurous ride.

With hearts full of boisterous excitement and the grey cells full of active ideas, this batch believes in standing united to take all further challenges head on. Having been given the opportunity to create something special and bask in the further glory of the spoils that come from the work ethic that we will develop and inculcate among ourselves. As Shery Sandberg rightly says:

“If you’re offered
a seat on
a rocket ship, DON’T
ASK WHAT SEAT!

just GET ON!”


  MBA IIT Kanpur
  2017-19 Batch


Sep 24, 2017

Tips from Top – " Value Based Marketing - Pharmaceutical Industry”. Mr. Utsav Rawat, Head of Marketing, Novartis



In the 21st century, a brand must understand their customers' root motivators in order to make the kind of value-based connection that is increasingly important to the modern consumer. To provide students with insights on this prevailing topic, Department of Industrial and Management Engineering played host to a seminar by Mr. Utsav Rawat, Head of Marketing-Novartis, who has a decade of experience in the health industry, to talk about value based marketing in Pharmaceutical Industry in India.

The seminar began with Mr. Utsav talking about the innovation giants, Apple and Tesla, who have redefined marketing as seen by the world with their unique approach and perspective. While talking about pharmaceutical companies, he said that on average, each company globally spends 8000-10000 crores on research and development and approx. 15% on marketing. He emphasized on the role regulation plays on innovation in healthcare industry.

While talking about difficulties for marketing in healthcare, he stated that unlike other industries, the decision maker, user and buyer are different in healthcare industry, which makes it difficult to market the products. He then walked us through evolution in pharmaceutical industry in India. In pre-1970 period, market was dominated by MNCs and there was absence of organized Indian companies. Indian Patent Act-1970, changed the face of pharmaceutical industry in India. India realized its core competency was in manufacturing and hence focused less on R&D. The span of two decades after 1980 was golden era for Indian pharmaceutical industry. Process development, export initiative, research orientation and production infrastructure creation set off the industry to the next level. Since the advent of 2010 the industry is now focusing on consolidation to reduce R&D cost and work for the well-being of customers. Big Indian players and MNCs are merging while sharing their core competencies to reduce the overall cost of the product. Consumer perspective has also changed in the 21st century, from adding years to life to adding life to years.


Mr.Utsav then explained how the industry trend in marketing has changed from sales in 1920s, to marketing in 1980s and eventually to value based marketing in 21st century. While giving an example of Starbucks, he mentioned how higher value creation leads to higher share of the wallet. India has got most FDA US approved manufacturing sites outside the US, implying that the global industry entry barriers are not strong anymoreEarlier it used to be only three people in the value chain, while now there are multiple stakeholders in-between who are equally important and they need to be the part of value creation.

Talking about converting a commodity to a brand, Mr.Utsav again went back to the Starbucks example, whose value addition is more than 2000% in the entire process. As he stated, "In case of product, don't be needy but be greedy."

At last, Mr. Utsav shared his the learning from real life marketing issues while sharing some industry examples. He said that one should have an approach of converting challenges into opportunities and changing the forces of the market.

Today, a company should be quick enough to figure out what resonates with their customers. Mr. Utsav concluded the seminar on a motivating note saying that a marketer should always think of what disruptions he can bring into the market.


Sep 8, 2017

Tips from Top – " Heath Care: An Exciting Opportunity”. Mr. Gaurav Malhotra, Managing Director, Medicover Healthcare



The Department of Management and Industrial Engineering hosted a seminar by Mr. Gaurav Malhotra, Managing Director, Medicover Healthcare who provided a clear and in-depth insight into the profound opportunities that the health care industry has and how the industry is adapting and changing with time. Medicover healthcare is an institution that believes in empowerment, integrity, teamwork, passion for quality and Entrepreneurship.

Mr. Malhotra began the presentation by a quote by Albert Einstein which talks about how easy it is to make simple things complex and how difficult it is to make complex things simple. He then went on to successfully explain the complicated concepts in the healthcare in simple terms that can be easily understood irrespective of background. He explained that, leadership behavior to him meant that one must be able to take decisions based on customers’ needs, must know how to unleash potential and must lead by example.

Mr. Malhotra explained how the healthcare system has evolved over the age in India. While the 1980s were familiar with large government hospitals and private nursing homes, the trend gradually shifted to multispecialty and corporate hospitals and recently we see an emerging inclination towards “medi-cities”. Indian healthcare is positioned for a robust growth. The health care necessities can be categorised as Environmental health needs, basic health needs, medically necessary needs, health enhancement and optimal health. Depending on which income group an individual belongs to, he or she will aspire for the optimal healthcare.  India is obsessed with growing economy. But unless we have a healthy nation, our economy would not improve. In the recent times there has been high growth rate in the health care industry in India due to the increase in disposable income, increase in diseases, population growth and insurance coverage. In fact, India is expected to be in the top 3 in the World in healthcare market in 2020. 


There has been a paradigm shift in the perception of healthcare. He explained how from conventional medical centres it has changed to state of art corporate setting, from long stay in hospitals to short stay and outpatient services; from unorganized sector to organised sector, from curative to preventive, from no quality check to quality service and accreditation, from travel to urban areas for treatment to availability of facilities in tier 2 and tier 3 cities and many such shifts. The amount of money spent on healthcare is the maximum while we are sick and terminal. We tend to go to hospital or avail medical services when we feel acute pain. The screening, diagnosis and preventive care are still at a very nascent stage.

Mr Malhotra then talked about the 4 A’s: Affordability, Assurance, Awareness and Accessibility. Even though everything in government is free, 68% of the Indians do not use public healthcare. He asked students opinions on what might be the reason for the lack of trust on the government health services. The discussion brought forth different views on the issue. He explained that India has a huge shortage when it comes to beds, nurses and doctors when compared to the WHO guidelines. 

Why is India such an attractive opportunity for healthcare business? Mr Malhotra explained that India has a huge demand right now. Whenever a family has a disposable income there are two places they will invest; child education and medical facilities. With the increasing per capita income of India, the country is an attractive market for medical business. India is the cardiac, cancer and diabetic capital of the world. The sedentary lifestyle is a major contributor to many diseases. To make India aware of the healthy lifestyle requires a big paradigm shift. The purported risk of lifestyle disease in India is expected to boost Industry sales figure. In the near future it is the private sector who would be the major player. Mr. Malhotra then walked us through VUCA (Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity) and how it is applied in the healthcare sector. 


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Finally Mr. Malhotra shared his views and thoughts about life. Hard work and smart work are both required for success. One cannot be successful without endurance. He emphasized on the importance of the continuous learning and how the thirst for knowledge will define success. This was a tremendous addition to the seminar. For students just about to step into the corporate world in near future, it is an invaluable advice from a person who has been a part of it for years. The seminar concluded by Mr. Malhotra taking questions on the growth of healthcare and the coexistence of online and physical healthcare.


Sep 4, 2017

Tips from Top – Self Branding in the Field of Job Market. Ms Ruchita Sharma, Head of Talent, India, Fidelity International




“Brand yourself for the career you want, not the job you have.” Dan Schawbel

Gone are the days when the term branding was used with reference to companies and products, but today, even an individual has a brand identity and a brand reputation to maintain.
To talk on this intangible, career deciding concept, IME invited Ms Ruchita Sharma, Head of Talent, India, Fidelity International.

In today’s world, it is a natural human tendency to fulfill behavioral expectations of the people around us rather than representing our own brand. We try to be what people expect us to be rather than follow our own paths. Ruchita in her discussion touched upon a few points that would help one to build a personal brand.


Build you own label

Going with the flow is often easy but is not always the right path to choose. To build one’s own label, people need to stand for something, build multiple self- brands while knowing how to personify them throughout one’s career.


Have a view

Being an achiever in terms of social indicators doesn’t allow you edge as is commonly believed. In a crowd of IIT and IIMs everyone is equal in that ecosystem, having a view or a clear perspective acts as a differentiator for an individual; something that helps you stand-out in a crowd. But just having a view does not count for anything if you are not articulate enough to represent them. To grab the spotlight, a person needs to be quick enough to adapt to the changing dynamics of any organisation.


The learning never stops

In the world of automation and robotics to have a job in the future, people would need to  be passionate and imaginative beyond being domain experts. . People need to constantly up-skill and upgrade their existing skill sets to have that competitive edge so that they can continue to add value. Lot of these new learnings are about listening, observing, absorbing and less about structured educations


Confidence versus arrogance

A personal brand has something unique… it starts and ends with you. Since building one’s own brand is not easy and when one starts seeing success it leads to confidence which again multiplies around you and has the risk of treading on the fine line of arrogance. This is not only a denominator for all the good work you done to build your standing but also can create serious blindspots.



Package yourself better - what’s your charisma!

A product is as good as the way it is packaged. However good your content maybe, if your representation is wrong, the whole personal brand can fall apart or could take much longer to be discovered. Right from your voice, to your dressing sense, to physical appearance to your online presence; everything matters while building a brand reputation. Inarticulateness and mechanical thought process of an individual makes him/her lose ability to leverage authenticity and the banality must be avoided when we undergo for eg.  Interview processes.


Every end is new beginning


Never shy away from failure, because even if you win some or lose some, you will end up learning something new.  The pressure we face should make us a better professional and a better person. These are the moments of truth which help the self-brand shine thru and become stronger.


Sep 3, 2017

Tips from Top – Disruptive Technologies for ‘Digital Desh’. Dr Dinesh Chandrasekar, Director, Global Solutions and Innovations, Hitachi Consulting


The Department of Industrial and Management Engineering, IIT Kanpur played host to Dr Dinesh Chandrasekar (Hitachi Consulting) for a lively and informative seminar session on Disruptive Technologies for ‘Digital Desh’.

“The Best way to predict the future is to invent it” With this quote from Alan Kay, Dr Chandrasekar proceeded to talk about the disruption that was being brought upon by the software designed businesses, and the wealth of opportunities it has churned up for young management graduates and technocrats to showcase their talents. Expounding upon the generational shift and exponential increase in innovation that has happened over the past couple of decades, he gave two revealing examples which highlighted how the rise of technology has accelerated growth. The contrast between the Moon missions by NASA, which involved immense human effort and economic capital expenditure over a period of 8 years versus the Team Indus - a small team of technocrats from India in the present who built a Moon Lander in a 3 years with a fraction of the resources, showcased how advancements in technology have hastened implementation of newer, innovative ideas into reality, in timeframes and costs unthinkable in previous eras. Furthermore, talking about the immense decrease in adoption times of newer technologies among people, Dinesh gave the example of the time it took for various modes of communication and mass media to reach 100 million user base. The numbers were revealing - while it took radio 38 years to achieve that target, a completely new mobile telephony entrant (JIO) achieved the same figure in 170 days.

With the rise of disruptive players like ‘Jio’ in the Indian digital communication sector, the speaker then talked about how Digital India was becoming a reality, with immense growth being shown across all segments of the sector. He described how this growth presented prodigious opportunities for innovation, particularly mutant innovation, as seen in markets such as China, where local, innovative players adopted international ideas and created fresh new segments for themselves in a booming market. Moving onto the consequences of such innovation on legacy companies, he talked about how it presents a grim scenario for companies which are not willing to adapt and inculcate innovation in their production and management strategies. Quoting an article by Washington University, he explained how 40% of the current Fortune 500 firms will cease to exist because of digital disruption.

Moving on from the consequences of disruption, Dinesh also talked about how modern technologies such as IOT could help businesses survive and thrive. Stressing particularly about the importance of IOT in modern industry, he gave examples from a variety of projects of Hitachi Consulting to showcase how IOT technologies could be implemented in a wide range of sectors, from retail to public safety to health services to the automotive sector. Further detailing IOT solutions, he gave several examples from his own experience in the fields of predictive maintenance and smart city projects, endeavours in which IOT technologies provided solutions which weren't possible with legacy, unconnected technologies.

The audience was then treated to an interactive Q&A session, in which the speaker answered queries on a wide range of issues. From voicing opinions on future of automation and its consequences on human careers, to providing insights into how such developments would reassert the importance of human critical thinking and creative skills, Dinesh also highlighted the need for constant learning to stay ahead of the curve, saying “ Don't be a know it all, be a learn it all.” The session proved to be highly insightful and was deeply appreciated by the audience.


Aug 23, 2017

Tips from Top – “Projection Modeling and Sensitivity Analysis”. Mr. Anoop Bhatia, V.P., I.C.R.A.


The Department of Industrial Management and Engineering organized a seminar by Mr. Anoop Bhatia, VP, ICRA Limited; who provided immense insights into how the corporate ratings assignment is performed and how sensitivity analysis helps assign these.

The seminar began on a light note, with Mr. Anoop offering Lao Tzu’s take on forecasting and quoting Evan Esar’s witty remarks on economists. He explained how an analyst actually is involved in presenting a result oriented outlook along with the forecast of industry demand, involved in financial planning, establishes goals and analyses the market to provide well-informed guidance on the possibilities. The projections are normally done with 5-7 years of data, which helps create a holistic outlook including up-cycle and down-cycle data, including those of the competitors in the industry. For vitality of project specific projections, the data utilized can even stretch up to 20 years. However, he professed from experience that the maintenance of a certain degree of accuracy of projections is difficult beyond 2-3 years.

He then walked us through the key steps in Projections, which included analyzing various factors such as the turnover or revenue of the company, the capacity utilization factors, operating profits, dividend trends, cash accruals, the fixed assets, the growth of capital expenditure of the company, if it hovers around the right amount of working capital, the state of its debts and inventory and so on. Something often overlooked in this process is the amount of loans a company often provides to its sister concerns.

Mr. Anoop also mentioned how the equity and the method in which the creditors are repaid influences the projection. He spoke of the example of project companies which start their loan payments after a certain period of time (moratorium period)., Some other companies utilize balloon loans serviced through bullet repayments. The number of creditors also has a large impact on the bargaining power of the company.

He reflected on the various assumptions, such as the revenue space includes considerations for the constraints of capacity addition and utilization, capacity for the service space referring to sales per unit space, the non-operating income of the company, brand value, segment wise revenue projections and the regulatory risks. A conservative approach would be ideal for considering one-offs. The profit margins are looked at differently for the manufacturing and service sectors. Much of the manufacturing sector is dependent on the cost structure, scale benefits, anticipated industry trends and the approach used to write off debtors. The assets and liabilities of the company also play a major role in projections.

He then continued on to how sensitivity analysis is performed by the ratings’ industry, considering the elements of a 7-year performance period where the revenues, profits, balance sheets, the impact of foreign exchange and mergers/de-mergers play a major role in determining the various tendencies of the organization. A conservative approach is often considered where sharp revenue rises are investigated and long-term stability often becomes the key decisive factor in this analysis.  The requirement to ensure consistency is often a representation of the management’s plans and capabilities and the business risk management approach adopted by the company. Sensitivity variation may also depend on the tangible and intangible net worth of the company.


Mr. Anoop then walked us through a couple of examples of the credit rating process and simulated the assignment of ratings varying in between D and AAA where AAA to BBB represented the companies that fall under the investment grade and the ones below signify non-investment grade companies. He explained that the challenges in this process lie in the absolute prediction of the performance of companies that have unpredictable up-cycles and down-cycles and lapses in the financial audit processes of the company. He concluded by answering questions on the modern evolving role of the credit rating organizations and the future they represent.





Aug 18, 2017

Tips from Top – “Emerging Applications and Opportunities in Geo-spatial Data Analytics”. Mr. Rajib Roy, C.E.O., Quantum Spatial Ltd.


The Department of Industrial and Management Engineering at IIT Kanpur played host to a seminar by Mr. Rajib Roy, CEO of Quantum Spatial Ltd., who put forth an overview of how analysis of geospatial data can bring about a paradigm shift in the world of information and how its subsequent analysis can result in benefits to various organizations.

Mr. Roy was quite forthright in bringing out some merry factoids about his career and his perception of the various walks of the world that he had been involved with. He eased us into the new and emerging world of geospatial data analytics, and the current playing fields surrounding this mystery. With the detection of trees having potential to cause forest fires in dry California terrain, to scouting and negating their possible interaction with live transmission lines with actual analysis on the z-axis, geospatial data analytics encompasses a very broad horizon of areas of application.

He then provided certain insight from the history of Quantum Spatial, a company with its grassroots dating back to the First World War, when reconnaissance missions from overhead flights were first used widely, and later on saw uses in crop dusting; to a current blue chip customer base and a 500 strong workforce.  

The primary difference between geospatial data and normal data is the conspicuous absence of structure as Mr. Roy strikingly brought forward. Performing predictive analysis with unstructured data represents a whole new level of analytics previously uncharted. This problem is normally approached in 3 different phases; the first phase being the collection of data, represents a cost intensive solution where fleets of airplanes, helicopters, drones and vehicles from land collect data using technologies like LIDAR, hyper spectral cameras and various sensors. Mr. Roy reflected on the advancement in data collection technology and the humongous investments it represents behind the short life cycles of the devices till obsolescence. The second phase represents a conversion of this data into structured form after cleaning it. While the first part of the process can be sourced from third parties, this is generally done in-house where terabytes of data are processed on a daily basis. The third phase represents analysis and interpretation of this data, and its representation in a constructive manner that various businesses can utilize.

Mr. Roy moved to discussing the exciting new opportunities in the geo-spatial data segment, commenting on how new problem solvers can truly bring cost effective solutions onto the table, with this being an area of concern that the new upcoming startups can very well target. With the movement of technology from passive to active acquisition, new avenues have opened up, where Mr. Roy explained the classic example of imagery versus LIDAR, and the problems with collection of data via satellites. Advances in the geo-spatial segment are also supposed to follow the classic cycle of defense usage moving on to civil, consumer and finally business centric uses. Geo-spatial analytics has finally breached the civil usage barrier and has tremendous new opportunities in the business consumer segment. Challenges surrounding the same would be in the areas of interpretation of unstructured data and involving cost effective solutions for the entire process. Mr. Roy concluded with the possibility of India adopting geospatial data analytics in the future and making the best use of her fundamentally immense resource pool.

Aug 13, 2017

Tips from Top – “Internet of Things: transforming the way we live”. Mr. Arun Karna, MD, AT&T Global Network Services India Pvt. Ltd.



The Department of Industrial and Management Engineering, IIT Kanpur, witnessed a wonderful seminar on the Internet of Things by Mr. Arun Karna, MD, AT&T Global Network Services India Pvt. Ltd. He brought us closer to how limitless and pervasive the concept of IoT is and talked about the potential multi-trillion industry which has caught the eye of business enterprises that look forward to transform businesses without human-to-human or human-to-computer interactions. 

Mr. Karna explained as to how the flow of information occurs from the sensors and control systems to the backend systems that are the hubs of data and API (Application Programming Interface). This back and forth of data can be analyzed to deduce astonishing solutions. He called IoT as the convergence of technologies that can work beyond the human imagination. He gave a business perspective to this scientific phenomenon wherein the stakeholders aspire to increase their revenue, streamline operations, reduce cost, save time, and increase visibility in the market. The strategy is subdivided to horizontal and vertical solutions - the horizontal solution takes care of devices, their connectivity, cloud, mobility and big data, while the vertical solutions move ahead with the idea of smart cities, fleet management and connected cars.

One important need satisfied by the Internet of Things is asset management. The underlying requirement is being able to know the whereabouts of your assets. The assets are tracked, monitored and managed from anywhere in the world. The global SIMs that offer connectivity throughout the continents have come to the rescue to solve the connectivity issues across changing service providers. The customized business approach provided by IoT, connects, manages and innovates.

Mr Karna also brought to the fore Global Equipment and Machinery solutions. He gave a classical example of how the aircraft engine manufacturing industries like GE, Rolls Royce and Pratt Whitney have switched to predictive analysis of aircraft engines. They now provide engines to Aircraft manufacturing industries like Boeing on ‘pay as you use basis’ rather than selling it off to them, thereby preventing huge losses by switching from capital expense to operational expense. Thus, the internet of things has practically changed the scenario of aircraft manufacturers and even prevented casualties by giving early warnings on possible breakdowns of engines and their operational status.

Mr. Karna also explained how virtualization of functions has brought a significant advancement in connected cars. The convergence of telematics and vehicle diagnostics along with infotainment has actually made ‘Connected Cars’ a reality. The usage based insurance that scores you as a driver, emergency alarms, avoiding unnecessary traffic by finding alternate pathways are the new ‘features’ that connected cars offer.

The speaker also ventured into the Healthcare Industry where the Internet of things has brought Remote Patient Monitoring to the rescue of thousands of critically ill patients. The adherence to the routine medicines to avoid secondary complications, the case management that customizes the ‘care plans’ and improvisation in the staff efficiency using IoT has made one to many patient management a cake walk for the hospitals.

Mr Arun Karna referred to IoT as an ecosystem of innovation. Besides, he also addressed queries from the audience regarding the breach of security and privacy. He mentioned that the lack of standardization in this new space has actually raised serious concerns. The students also asked the challenges faced by the IoT in marketing itself. Mr Karna said that a varied spectrum of businessmen prevail that are often tackled by providing the Proof of Concept preferably free of cost to showcase the wonders IoT can do. The rogue sensors are another impediment that IoT phenomenon faces.


All in all, the distinguished speaker enlightened and provided a vivid perspective to the management students by sharing his extensive experience that certainly opened their eyes to the world of IoT.


Aug 7, 2017

Tips from Top – “Organisation Culture”. Mr. Tojo Jose, C.H.R.O., Muthoot Fincorp

Organisation Culture: Acta Non Verba

The Department of Industrial and Management Engineering at IIT Kanpur hosted a seminar by Mr Tojo Jose, CHRO at Muthoot Fincorp Ltd. on the topic of organization culture. Organizational culture is a guiding factor that acts as the genetic code of any organization.



Mr Jose talked about how important it is for an individual to ensure that his/her values resonate with the values of the organization. The culture incompatibility can prove to be a menace for anyone working in an organization, even if the person has a good skill set. He talked about the articulated values like integrity and dignity that are implicit in nature and always keep our moral compass duly pointing north. The three C’s - Confront, Complaint and Conform - form the basis of how an employee identifies himself/herself with the organization. The confronting and complaining individuals often find it difficult to gel with the existing culture, and compromise forms the fourth C that often finds its place when individuals do not necessarily conform with the organization, but in the process of trying to fit in, compromise on various fronts.

Mr Jose further talked about the leadership development program of Muthoot Fincorp that inculcates desired values among the employees. The leaders from the organization interact with the employees to give them perspective. The right values are rewarded, which implies that the defaulters are punished and meanwhile, the organization looks for opportunities to reiterate the significance of the right attitude. The speaker also quoted various examples from his experience at BlueStar, the organization he worked before Muthoot FinCorp. Humility at senior management level is always a desired attribute and “Hire for Skill and Fire for attitude’’ is the caveat that Mr Jose brought to the fore.


Culture is something that people practice when nobody is watching. This statement struck a chord with the audience when he talked about the champions and the mediocre leaders. The business values that every employee possesses are integral to any organization and make a difference no matter where they are on the hierarchical ladder of the company. The speaker frequently called organization culture the gorilla in the room - unseen, but very much there. The interactive session held thereafter made the management students realize the importance of fitting in the jigsaw puzzle that any company offers and climbing up the corporate ladder with much ease. The session proved to be full of insights regarding the less evident aspects of the corporate world which would no doubt prove useful to every single attendee in their careers.

Jul 12, 2017

"Is India Staring at a Demographic Disaster?"- An article by Himanshu Dubey (Student 2016-18 Batch)



All about the good part first, we all are hearing good news about India being the bright spot in the world, F.D.I. inflows are at their peak levels, stock market breaking all previous records, major reforms getting passed, less corruption levels at the highest level of the government, though the root level corruption is still plaguing this nation. You feel things are going in the right direction until you are greeted with the recent job numbers. To set the context right let’s look at some numbers: 12.56 lacs jobs were created in 2009 and a meager 1.35 lacs and 2.31 lacs in 2015 and 2016 respectively. We used to call the period corresponding to the 2009 numbers as jobless growth. What will you call this? Super jobless growth? Or Hyper jobless growth? Well I will leave it to you to come up with fancy terminologies.

Dearth of Investments
So, what’s the reason for all this misfortune which has come our way even when we are the brightest spot and so much F.D.I. inflows are happening? Well to set the record straight, we have to delve deeper into the web of these numbers. Let’s start with the F.D.I. numbers, theoretically F.D.I. has a direct and indirect impact on job creation in not just the sector in which the investment is flowing in but also the complimentary sectors, then why is it not really working out for India? For starters, 60% of F.D.I. inflows in 2016 were in the service sector and a major part of it was directed towards acquisitions and incremental investments which were largely used for debt repayment and acquiring assets. To make matters worse, the ultimate job creating machine of the India, the IT sector is slowing down as it transitions into the new era. The manufacturing sector which can really turn the game on its head is screeching for investments. There is a dearth of private investment in India as the corporate balance sheets are ridden with debt, the banking system is in a huge turmoil (7 lac crores of N.P.A.s) which makes the banks reluctant to lend. Demonetization has also exacerbated the problem by deepening the already existing lending crunch in the country let alone the loss of jobs in the informal sector, the latest GDP numbers quite evidently show the growth slump.

Globalization vs Anti-Globalization
Often, we compare India with China and how the latter posted unprecedented growth figures for 30 straight years. However, the situation now and then is starkly different. World economy was posting better growth rates, world leaders then were in the race of becoming the champion of liberalization. Also, It is not hidden from anyone that how well China capitalized on that, and turned into an economic behemoth it is today. The situation today is just the opposite, World economy is not growing as much it did then, economies in the west are becoming more and more conservative due to pressure from the local public, just to mention the election of Donald Trump as US President and UK exiting European Union reflects the current mood in the west. Even China which rode on this export extravaganza is trying to shift towards a more consumption based economy. So, to think that India can post same numbers as China with the same strategy should be taken with a pinch of salt though it doesn’t undermine the positive impact, manufacturing can have on the Indian economy. As rightly said by Raghuram Rajan, the quintessential former RBI governor that before making for the world, we shall first make for India.

Conclusion
There’s a lot of talk about the demographic dividend India possess, 1 million new young men and women enter the workforce every month in India and unfortunately there are not enough jobs for them to lead their life they dream of. This demographic dividend window is short, if we miss the bus again, this dividend will surely turn into a disaster.

- Himanshu Dubey

Jun 18, 2017

MBA Admissions, 2017-19 Batch: City Meets, Delhi & Kolkata; M.O.M.

IIT Kanpur | MBA 2016-18 batch students organised informal city meets for the upcoming batch’s (2017-19) prospective students to clear admission related queries; and to give the prospective candidates a glimpse of the unique MBA program and life at IIT Kanpur as per their viewpoints based on their year long experience. 


The meets were organised in the two metro-cities: Delhi and Kolkata, on Sunday, 18th June, 2017. The date and cities for the meets were decided based on online survey amongst the candidates, taking current location and availability of majority as the criteria.  Minutes of the two meetings are as follows: 

1) Place- C.C.D., Janpath, New Delhi
Student Facilitators- Abhinav Arora, Shivam Gupta, Siddharth Vohra

Queries were related to the department, the courses offered, Extra-curricular activities, internship opportunities, final placements and the campus.


The prospects were informed that they would have 5 compulsory subjects in the first semester and subsequent freedom to choose form the many electives later on, based on their interests and career goals. (Apart from one compulsory subject each in 2nd and 4th semester.)

They were also briefed about the activities of the student run committees at MBA IITK viz. a viz.: Placement Committee, Cultural Committee, ‘Avant-Garde’ (MBA IITK-Magazine), Public Relations, Corporate Relations and Alumni Relations.

Regarding placements, students were informed about how the process is carried out and how one could get relevant opportunities in their fields of interest in various good companies that recruit our students for internships and placements. The student facilitators also explained about their experiences so far in their respective internship companies i.e. Polaris, Mother Dairy, and Novartis.

The candidates were also informed about the lush green- 1050 acre campus and about the various opportunities and facilities that would be available on the campus, like the O.A.T. - where one can hang around; watch movies and matches; celebrate birthday parties and enjoy interesting varieties of food including Dominoes pizza. (Editor’s note: This list is not exhaustive.) 


2) Place: Barista café, Park Street, Kolkata
Student Facilitators: Himanshu Dubey and Prakhar Barole

NOTE: Redundant Queries, already mentioned above are not included, though extra information for similar queries has been provided below.


To answer the question on subject options available, the facilitators informed that the students were free to pursue any interest by choosing different subjects wherein, even inter department subject selection was also allowed. However, it was informed that while choosing different subjects, one needed to abide by the criterion set by the D.O.A.A. (Dean of Academic Affairs) office, for the requisite credits of every semester and also the final total credits criteria. Further, brief description about the credit distribution and timelines of the Capstone project was also given.  

Apart from this, the facilitators highlighted the role’ I.I.T.’ played in the overall grooming of one’s personality, by providing the stage to not only pursue personal interests but also meet like-minded people through different fests  in the campus, the hostel life, different competitions, sports facilities and other activities. In all, the vivacity of life at IIT K was conveyed to the students.  

Information about the class composition and peer to peer learning opportunities at department and Institute level was also given. Candidates were informed about possibility of interaction with people from different background ranging from mechanical to IT, from chemical to marine; also people from non-MBA background and from other departments like humanities, army, VLFM etc. 

May 19, 2017

Student Experience, Bhavna Uttamchandani, MBA 2015-17 Batch

My rendezvous with Life - MBA Diary


Most of us have read the timeless poem “I have a rendezvous with death”  - by Alan Seeger;
“It may be he shall take my hand  
And lead me into his dark land  
And close my eyes and quench my breath—  
It may be I shall pass him still.
I have a rendezvous with Death”
The beginning of the unforgettable MBA journey of my life had me with the feelings as depicted beautifully in the above stanza. Venturing into an unexplored journey with unknown fellows had taken my breathe but what attracted me more was the promise to explore and challenge my own limits. I was more than ready to quit my job and start this journey and finally it all started in 2015…
From business formal photo-shoots to restless nights to complete the tasks given by the seniors welcomed us to the IIT journey. Neck to neck deadline tasks, the gatherings, the discussions all of these activities introduced me with people from length and breadth of the country. Badminton, Squash, lush green playgrounds and a campus known for its own way of pushing you out of your comfort zone had set the stage for the upcoming exciting two years.
A unique transition one witnesses during the academic sessions is a horizontal system of ideas sharing not only from the professors but an equal reciprocation from the scholars. Every session was a transition within me from attending a monologue to participating in a dialogue. We often hear that theory classrooms do not make a difference in practicalities of life, but I am lucky to witness this hypothesis getting rejected when we got the opportunity to listen to faculties like Rahul Varman, Dr. Jayant Chatterjee who actually brought about a second transition from making their students strive for being person of significance than that of mere success
Mesmerizing PK Kelkar library encompasses in it lakhs of books which are beyond imagination, the flexibility to study any subject being taught in campus, learning foreign languages, working on live projects during course, are just some of the fascinating things that may not be required to get just an MBA degree but were definitely a stepping stone to gaining an altogether different experience of life.
It would be unfair not to mention about one of the most enthralling campuses in India. The feeling of riding bicycle besides beautiful peacocks, becoming habitual of their pihu sound, countless green trees laden with Gulmohar on either side of the roads, having your own Airstrip, are just a few of the perks one proudly enjoys being in IIT Kanpur. Being a foodie, New SAC became a place to enjoy delicious rolls, burgers or a domino’s pizza while enjoying a Sherlock series in Open Air Theater (OAT). Coffee lovers just cannot resist end up lending at the campus CCD daily on their way to library, or one must confess CCD becoming a library itself during exams…
They say that even if you do not play any sport or games or haven’t danced in your life, you’ll do all this in your MBA life here. I discovered myself dancing here, coordinating and managing events and finally falling in love with Snooker as a game.
This journey has materialized the popular conversation from Game of Thrones;
“Bran thought about it. 'Can a man still be brave if he's afraid?'
'That is the only time a man can be brave,' his father told him.”
All I have learned during the whole of this journey is about living the fears to convert them into your strength, wearing every fear of yours as an armor to bring the best out of you, to challenge the status quo, to come out of the fear of losing the job, to come out of failing an exam and to come out of treating yourself less than others and all this will boil down to a single point;
 “It will bring the men out of the boys and women out of the girls who will not fail the ultimate exam , the exam of life…”  
Bhavna Uttamchandani ( MBA | IIT Kanpur - 2015-17 )