New ISG ‘Bots and Beyond’ Podcasts Explore Reality, Hype of Automation Technology

Experts with Paddy Power Betfair, Western Union, DigitalFabric, Mercer join first episodes;Podcasts cover chatbots, remote work, citizen developers, automation’s role in business continuity


STAMFORD, Conn., Oct. 23, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Information Services Group (ISG) (Nasdaq: III), a leading global technology research and advisory firm, today announced the launch of “Bots and Beyond,” the latest ISG Smartalks™ podcast series. The new series features conversations with enterprise leaders, automation practitioners and industry consultants that offer in-depth views on the fast-moving automation technology landscape.

The use of chatbots to deliver better customer experiences is covered in the newest episode, “Bots and Beyond” Episode 4: “To Chatbot or Not?” Host Wayne Butterfield, director, ISG Automation, talks with Richard Clarke, managing director of Customer Operations at Paddy Power Betfair, about how the international sports betting and gaming operator uses digital tools to provide contextually rich, personalized and relevant customer interactions.

In “Bots and Beyond” Episode 3: “Distance is Futile – Remote Working for an Automation Center of Excellence,” Butterfield and Gintautas Jonutis, global head of Robotics & Intelligent Automation at Western Union look at how remote work has impacted automation centers of excellence. Before the onset of the pandemic, the global financial services company had put in place a scaled, cross-functional, co-located automation model to keep teams together, but Jonutis notes the model is now serving the remote work environment by providing clear, disciplined roles and routines, shareware, team accountability and a focus on outcomes that has increased KPIs and productivity.

Butterfield talks to Ashwin Gaidhani, principal at DigitalFabric and advisory leader at AISwitch Technologies, about the increased focus on automation for business continuity, in “Bots and Beyond” Episode 2: “When Business Continuity Planners Became Gods.”

“The pandemic has brought the role of automation in business continuity planning to the forefront,” Butterfield said. “Automation was not part of many organizations’ plans, until they saw how technology can be leveraged to negate problems exposed by COVID-related business interruptions. For example, bots can augment human efforts, can be coded to do multiple tasks, and can be dynamically repurposed to ensure they’re never idle.

“The challenge in recovering from the pandemic is to avoid ‘change blindness,’” Butterfield continued. “While business attention is understandably attuned to surviving the downturn, enterprises can’t afford to miss the significant changes and benefits automation brings. By keeping in regular touch with experts about developments in automation, we hope our ‘Bots and Beyond’ podcast can be a helpful resource.”

In “Bots and Beyond” Episode 1: “Citizen Developer, Hype or Hoax?” Butterfield speaks to Kieran Gilmurray, global automation lead at Mercer, about building a culture of citizen developers and a “combination of brilliant partnerships” to drive enterprise growth and innovation.

“In the future, business innovation may come from anywhere in IT, employees, vendors or elsewhere,” Butterfield said. “As the new, digitally dexterous generation of employees brings an ability to embrace emerging technology to the organizations they join, the concept of the citizen developer is getting a lot of traction. The challenge is to implement tools, methods, governance and a ‘go-for-it’ culture that helps employees and businesses work together to solve complicated problems.” 

The ISG Smartalks “Bots and Beyond” series joins the ISG Smartalks “Imagine Your Future” podcast, offering technology and sourcing insights from the thought leaders at ISG; the ISG Smartalks “Digital Dish” podcasts, which bring together thinkers, industry leaders and pace setters to spotlight women’s voices and experiences in technology, and the ISG Smartalks “Blockchain Now” series, which includes interviews with enterprise leaders on their experiences implementing blockchain technology.

ISG “Bots and Beyond” podcast episodes are available on the ISG website, Amazon, Apple Podcasts, Player FM, Spotify, Stitcher, RadioPublic, TuneIn and YouTube.

About ISG

ISG (Information Services Group) (Nasdaq: III) is a leading global technology research and advisory firm. A trusted business partner to more than 700 clients, including more than 75 of the world’s top 100 enterprises, ISG is committed to helping corporations, public sector organizations, and service and technology providers achieve operational excellence and faster growth. The firm specializes in digital transformation services, including automation, cloud and data analytics; sourcing advisory; managed governance and risk services; network carrier services; strategy and operations design; change management; market intelligence and technology research and analysis. Founded in 2006, and based in Stamford, Conn., ISG employs more than 1,300 digital-ready professionals operating in more than 20 countries—a global team known for its innovative thinking, market influence, deep industry and technology expertise, and world-class research and analytical capabilities based on the industry’s most comprehensive marketplace data. For more information, visit

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