The DTC Interview: Swish.ai’s Sebastien Adjiman

Photo credit: Swish.ai

As co-founder and CEO of Swish.ai, Sebastien Adjiman recognizes a crisis when he sees one. In this case it’s the deep stress being put on IT teams thanks to the dual impact of digital transformation and COVID. Swish.ai is reinventing the IT service management (ITSM) experience through its hyperautomation platform, using AI to apply autonomous ticket orchestration on top of existing ITSM workflows – and improving ticket resolution time significantly.

Here, Adjiman opens up about the Tel Aviv-based startup—which recently fully emerged from stealth with the announcement of the DTC-led Series A funding—as well as what he’s learned and what inspires him.

Why This, Why Now
The fundamental problem Swish hopes to solve is…exponentially increasing ticket volume. Digital transformation has put an immense strain on IT service and support departments, and COVID and the major shift to remote and hybrid work have only accelerated the problem. Ticket volume has increased by around 35 percent. It’s absolutely vital for the industry respond to this wake-up call.

We were able to witness firsthand the distress and frustration of enterprise CIOs dealing with increasing numbers of tickets…  to address a higher number of tickets, you needed more IT personnel. But budgetary constraints didn’t allow that, which led to burnout.

We started the company because…my co-founder, Arnon Yaffe, and I have a combined 50 years of experience in selling and deploying enterprise productivity platforms for very large enterprises. So we were able to witness firsthand the distress and frustration of enterprise CIOs dealing with increasing numbers of tickets. Before Swish, in order to address a higher number of tickets, you needed more IT personnel. But budgetary constraints didn’t allow that, which led to burnout among the existing personnel.

“Hyperautomation” is…an AI-driven approach that organizations utilize to intelligently analyze, understand, expedite, and automate existing business and IT workflows. Through that, they can achieve operational excellence and, subsequently, cost savings.

A technology breakthrough that made the Swish platform possible is…progress around unsupervised algorithms. It’s allowed our data science teams to develop proprietary algorithms that train themselves using our customers’ historical data. This led to a reduction of the deployment time from months to weeks — which shortened the “time to value” for customers.

There are still many repetitive, manual tasks that can be automated. That’s why I believe that the whole trend – things like autonomous driving and ticket orchestration — could bring about many innovations in various sectors of our lives.

The current tech innovation I’m most excited about is… the whole autonomous trend. There are still many repetitive, manual tasks that can be automated. That’s why I believe that the whole trend – things like autonomous driving and ticket orchestration — could bring about many innovations in various sectors of our lives. That could give us a healthier work-life balance, a more equal society, and a reduction in human error.

Learnings & Inspiration
The leader I most admire for his team-building capabilities is…Steve Jobs. I love his “self-manage” concept: The greatest people are self-managing — they don’t need to be managed. Once they know what to do, they’ll go figure out how to do it. What they need is a common vision.

Swish’s most important hires have been… We needed to hire great leaders who were experts in both data science and engineering. We were lucky to have Oren Miara, one of the most talented data scientists I’ve ever come across, join the team to develop all the algorithms behind Swish’s proprietary technology. Then we were joined by Gadi Wolfman, who spent 10 years in Informatica and is one of the top experts in building robust enterprise-grade, mission-critical systems.

(In startups) often, we celebrate enormous wins and deal with serious challenges in the same week.

One thing I wish I knew earlier about launching a startup is… the intensity of the highs and lows. Often, we celebrate enormous wins and deal with serious challenges in the same week. This, of course, takes an emotional toll on the founders. I’m happy to have found the best partner for this journey, my co-founder, Arnon.

Off the Clock
A TV series everyone should watch is…
The Last Dance. It’s a stunning portrait of Michael Jordan and the reasons behind the Chicago Bulls’ amazing success. It inspired me that hard work, teamplay, and a great leader are the recipe for success.

In five years, ITSM support hyperautomation will… not be the only thing we do. Our plan is to go beyond ITSM and implement hyperautomation in all service and support functions inside the enterprise, including legal, HR, facility management, security operations, and so on. Our vision is to allow our enterprise customers to cope with the rapid pace of the digital world, while maintaining a healthy work-life balance and focusing on value-adding tasks. My biggest reward will be when customers thank me for being able to spend more time with their families since the implementation of Swish.ai.

 

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