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I have three priorities when it comes to supporting our workforce: enable the team to focus on high-value tasks, put intelligence in their hands to make better decisions, and deliver the best support experience to employees. Moveworks is unique in that it helps us achieve all three.Milind Wagle, CIO, Equinix
Founded in 1998, Equinix is today the world’s largest interconnection and colocation platform, boasting more than 210 data centers and powered by over 10,000 employees across 26 countries. The company’s leading position in global market share is a tribute to the power of centralization: its data centers allow customers to consolidate the entire digital business and reach anyone on demand via a single service.
The task of supporting a massive, distributed workforce is not an easy one, even for a company that prides itself on collaboration. Equinix’s IT headcount stands at roughly 400, and for CIO Milind Wagle, keeping that number flat while scaling the larger enterprise meant exploring automation.
“Our strategy is always focused on automation and scale, which is why we’ve had our sights set on AI,” Wagle said. “But for a while, it was all just marketing slides—not something we could actually put in place to transform the employee experience.”
In April 2019, Equinix launched Moveworks—better known to the company’s employees as E-Bot. Moveworks’ combination of advanced conversational AI and natural language understanding (NLU) enables E-Bot to resolve employees’ IT support issues directly in Microsoft Teams, no matter how they ask. Between updating passwords, creating distribution lists, unlocking accounts, provisioning software, looking up colleagues, finding conference rooms, filling out forms, and more, E-Bot is transforming tedious tasks into painless conversations that last only a few seconds.
“The Moveworks bot facilitates self-service capabilities that didn’t exist before,” commented Wagle, adding that such capabilities allow his team to focus on more rewarding projects. He sees E-Bot taking on an even bigger share of the workload as Moveworks’ machine learning models continue to improve with each new interaction.
With Skype for Business reaching end-of-life, Wagle and VP of Global IT Infrastructure Greg Ogle needed to convince employees to quickly migrate from Skype to Teams. As an incentive, the IT team made E-Bot available exclusively in Teams, while also distributing a series of messages promoting Teams. While total employee adoption of Skype never exceeded 25%, adoption of Teams skyrocketed to 75% before Skype was shut down. And thanks in part to E-Bot, Teams adoption rose to more than 90% by the end of 2019.
“Leveraging the bot helped with our transition to Teams across the company,” Ogle said. “By the time we finally did shut down Skype, it was a nonevent. If you’re a Teams shop, Moveworks can extend the platform and bring it new life.”
But IT support is just the beginning. Equinix plans to expand its partnership with Moveworks “to use cases that are truly innovative,” according to Wagle. Indeed, as a machine learning platform that is constantly being refined and updated, Moveworks is a unique asset: one that appreciates in value. Every interaction that users have with the bot is another data point to improve its models, which today benefit from 70 million IT tickets.
“We’ve had our eye on AI and ML for some time,” Wagle said. “Moveworks is the first service that actually improves IT service delivery while reducing costs.”