“Synergy,” says marketing guru Stephen Covey, “is better than my way or your way. It’s our way. The essence of synergy is to value differences, to respect them, to build on strengths, to compensate for weaknesses.”
Today, organisations are increasingly capitalising on the benefits that come with collaboration. In fact, across the world, eminent organisations are adopting the ‘collaborate to innovate’ mantra, across sectors. By working together, a lot more can be achieved and even critical issues can be resolved more efficiently and innovatively.
One such issue today is that of the problems arising in India’s urban areas, such as pollution and unemployment. How can organisations work together with each other and the government to solve critical urban problems our country is facing today, both as an economy and as a society?
This is the challenge that YES BANK, India’s fourth-largest private sector bank, along with 12 leading organisations in their field, is throwing open to the youth of India in one of the largest case study challenges in the country. Through its flagship YES TRANSFORMATION series, YES BANK and the 12 programme partners have invited students of business schools and tech institutes to find innovative ways to solve India’s urban challenges using the collaborate to innovate mantra,.
Since its launch in 2010, the YES BANK Transformation Series has offered over 75,000 students from all business schools and tech institutes across the country, an opportunity to work on real-life challenges that globally-renowned enterprises are facing and come up with disruptive and innovative concepts as solutions for these challenges.
Working together to solve India’s urban development challenges
This year, in its 7th edition, the initiative seeks to focus on India’s Urban Development Challenges through ‘Collaboration as a service’ (CaaS) and has joined hands with 12 leaders in their space. These include tech giants such as Microsoft, Cisco, IBM and Adobe, startups Big Basket, Urban Ladder, BookMyShow and Sportz Interactive, ecosystem enabler T-Hub India, edtech major Coursera, global energy leader Shell, and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
From agriculture, to air quality, to entertainment and education, the 12 leaders, along with YES BANK, will offer the participants an opportunity to come up with solutions that utilise technology to address societal issues across sectors. While Microsoft is looking to Empower Farmers with AI for Agriculture, Cisco’s focus is on Smart Food-Supply Chain, and BigBasket’s on Expanding Agri-Commerce Opportunities. IBM is looking at opportunities to build a Collaborative Healthcare Ecosystem; Shell at Improving Urban Air Quality, and United Nations Development Program at a more efficient way to Manage Plastic Waste. Adobe wants to know how you can Reinvent Sales and Marketing in the Digital Age, while Urban Ladder is looking for solutions to Build Future-Ready Retail Experiences. Sportz Interactive is looking to Develop a Multi-Sports Ecosystem, and Coursera wants to explore the Future of Skills for Future of Work. T-Hub India wants ideas for a Startup Innovation Hub, while BookMyShow is looking for innovative ideas on the Future of Entertainment in India.
Cash prizes plus an opportunity to work with government agencies
The 12 partners will select the top 15 teams after an initial screening round based on their initial submissions. In the second round, these 15 teams will get to work on a case of national importance in partnership with NITI Aayog. At the grand finale to be held in November 2018, the 15 finalists will present their solutions to a panel comprising eminent business leaders and visionaries. The finals will also be telecast on national television on the CNBC TV18 channel.
In store for the top three teams are cash prizes of Rs 5 lakh, Rs 3 Lakh, and Rs 2 lakh for the first, second and third places, respectively. The finalists will also get an opportunity for pre-placement interviews with YES BANK.
According to Rana Kapoor, Managing Director and CEO, YES BANK, “Today, businesses and enterprises cannot function in silos, and therefore, collaboration within or across industries is inevitable. As such, YES BANK’s unique effort, ‘Collaboration as a Service’ (CaaS) is an extension of the Bank’s A.R.T (Alliances and Relationships driven by Technology) philosophy, and will provide creative solutions to pressing issues of national importance. We are extremely excited to leverage the skills and insights from the students and our 12 global partners, in collaboration with the Government to address India’s pertinent Urban Development Challenges.”
In the last two years, the Ministry of New & Renewable Energy, Government of India and NITI Aayog provided challenges for the participants. Last year, over 30,000 students submitted solutions of which the top 3 were selected by the Atal Innovation Mission, NITI Aayog.
Rated as the second-most prestigious B-School competition of the year 2018 by Dare2compete, the application process for the Transformation Series starts today and closes on Aug 31, 2018.