help-desk-cropped-bhavin-shahThere’s been a lot of buzz in the HMG member-CIO community around an emerging company called Moveworks that’s tackling an age-old problem in IT: resolving employee support issues. In fact, many of these members happen to be Moveworks customers and they are bragging about the company’s ability to solve their support tickets autonomously. 

HMG Strategy had a chance to sit down with Moveworks Founder and CEO Bhavin Shah to discuss his company and the impact they are having on the modern IT organization.

HMG Strategy: We understand that you’re solving up to 35% of IT tickets autonomously for some top CIOs and their IT organizations — tell us about that.

Bhavin Shah: I’ll let our customers do the talking. Wendy Pfeiffer, the CIO of Nutanix, often talks at HMG events about how Moveworks is resolving 35% of her company’s daily IT issues autonomously with our AI. She also says this has created a healthier environment for IT, and that everyone is happier as a result. Andy Nallapan, CIO of Broadcom, says we had a huge impact after they acquired CA Technologies and inherited a new workforce, along with a ton of data to go with it. We were able to help with the transition, and today they’ve been able to reach a 23% ticket resolution rate with Moveworks.

Our system gets even smarter over time. So, we might start off resolving 15% of a customer’s IT tickets, but within a few weeks, we can be resolving 25% or 30% of all tickets. We even have some days where we’ve seen a resolution rate over 50% for some customers. 

Today, the IT support process is largely managed by a chain of people and it is painfully slow, with the average ticket taking three entire days to resolve. Not only that, but IT spends a large part of their day tending to highly repetitive tasks like resetting passwords and unlocking accounts when they’d rather focus on more strategic parts of the business. That’s why we built Moveworks: a system that can actually do the work and resolve employee IT issues autonomously — from identifying and understanding the issue to finding the optimal solution, and then automating resolution.

Is IT service desk and support an area that really needs automation?

BNS: Absolutely. Look at it this way. An average employee submits one IT support ticket per month. And on average, each IT ticket costs about $25 to resolve using traditional methods — e.g. service desk agents, workflow tools, service centers, etc. For a company like Broadcom that has 15,000 employees, that adds up fast. We’ve enabled IT teams to resolve these issues at a fraction of the cost autonomously. And that reduction in overhead expense starts happening from the moment our technology is deployed. 

Some of the companies you’re working with are quite big and could build their own solution. Why go with Moveworks?

BNS: Most CIOs are faced with the old “build versus buy” conundrum when it comes to AI. But most are opting to buy simply because building from scratch is far too costly and the ROI is uncertain. In fact, according to Gartner, 85% of AI projects will deliver inaccurate results. Also, the talent to both build the technology and maintain it is difficult to find these days.

Even if a DIY deployment proves successful, the real complexity and costs are in running an AI environment. Updating models, refactoring models, and creating new ensembles to improve model performance is something we do at Moveworks every day to maintain the impact of our systems for our customers. In fact, we’re one of the rare enterprise vendors that make improvements daily without the customer having to lift a finger.

There’s a lot of vaporware out there involving AI. What makes Moveworks different?

BNS: The main difference between Moveworks and other AI companies is our focus on resolving IT issues end-to-end, rather than just providing recommendations or making predictions. Autonomous resolution is a manifestation of strong AI, whereas simply making recommendations is a weak form of AI. The former is more powerful, but a lot more rare to find. Moveworks is unique because it actually does the work and continuously learns and gets smarter with use. Moveworks not only learns the more employees use it, but there’s a network effect — meaning, the more all of our customers use it, the more everyone benefits. 

CIOs are often concerned with adding new solutions because they create more work and often fail. How are you able to convince enterprise companies that you truly drive efficiencies?

BNS: The value and efficiencies derived from deploying any new technology depends on the specific business objective, but, in a general sense, it’s a good measure to look at the impact it’s having on the user. For our customers, it’s the impact we’re having on employees and IT. Are employees getting their issues resolved faster? Is productivity up? Are costs down? Is IT able to focus on higher-value activities?  For CIOs who deploy our system, the answer to all of those questions is “yes.” They also see that there are now entire categories of work their IT staff no longer have to do manually. That’s made an extremely positive and measurable impact on our customers and is the reason why we’ve ramped up our growth so quickly. 

Also, AI needs to be able to withstand the test of time, and prove the results are repeatable and consistent. Scale is a big consideration as well, given how much data large corporations amass. Moveworks is built for this. We learn continually from enterprises of all sizes. We're data driven, and we share this data with our customers to track the results every single day. IT teams tell us they're actually able to report more detail to their management teams, now that they're running Moveworks.

Companies move quickly and new technologies often fail to keep up. How are you addressing that?

BNS: The beauty of Moveworks is we truly do the work. That means we know each and every day if our product is adding value or if it is not. There is no guessing, no customer surveys or NPS reports that can be misinterpreted or skewed to our biases. The Moveworks AI platform analyzes every support ticket proactively and tries to resolve it, or at the very least classify and categorize it. We are constantly delivering value in the background. Our system continues to get smarter over time as our models get more precise.

Most enterprise vendors perceive themselves simply as technology providers. They walk in, talk a big game, sell their tool and then walk away, leaving the company with the burden of updating and maintaining the systems — or upsell professional services to keep those tools running. The partnership with Moveworks’ customers really gets going after we do the necessary work for integration. Operationalizing and managing the machine learning’s effectiveness is a continuous partnership. We evaluate how our system is doing on an hourly and daily basis. Adjustments are made in real time or learned by the system. To date, not a single Moveworks customer has hired staff, nor have they spent a single dollar on professional services to maintain our platform.

So, what’s next for Moveworks?

BNS: We started in IT because we saw a massive problem, and because we believe in becoming the best in one domain. That said, we are already training our system to understand new language patterns across other areas in the enterprise like HR and Finance. This is very much in its infancy. However, we’re currently focused on becoming the best AI system in the world for resolving IT issues before officially expanding into other areas.