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Hatha Systems – is enabling organizations to successfully Digitally Transform through Operational Transparency
Interview conducted by:
Lynn Fosse, Senior Editor
Published – April 4, 2022
CEOCFO: Ms. Moorthy, what is the concept behind Hatha Systems?
Ms. Moorthy: We deliver comprehensive transparency and analytics using automation to all the software used by organizations to run business/mission operations. It is end-
How we got started was really by focusing on understanding what is implemented in all of that software that runs business operations because we kept observing the continuous struggle organizations were facing while addressing digital transformation (DX) and managing operational risk. We found through observation and survey that organizations run as much as 80% to 95% of their operations in software. We quickly realized that without transparency of this software, organizations don’t have the agility they need to quickly and accurately evolve to meet customer demands, market/competitive pressures, or compliance requirements. Most organizations not only struggle with this, but end up spending way too much money, and in the end compromise on the end result, instead of their required result. It is not only a common story but one that has been repeated for decades.
Digital Transformation (DX) and Operational Risk Management are the two major focused efforts for most organizations to ensure they stay competitive in this massively digitizing world. DX includes legacy modernization, application migration to cloud, portfolio rationalization, post M&A integration. Operational Risk includes Audit, Compliance and Resilience. These organizations not only overspend on budgets and but also struggle to complete these DX and Ops Risk projects because of the lack of transparency. After a few years of DX and Ops Risk efforts, they are just now realizing that without transparency of their current state or future state, they cannot get to an acceptable finish line. It will always be either a partial or compromised finish line.
Organizations struggle with trying to figure out, “How do I transform my legacy operation with the limited budget and achieve operational effectiveness/agility?”, “I have no clue how my current operation runs in and across my software. It’s not documented properly”, “I have outsourced my software to a third party, and they take care of it… and now how do I manage the situation to regain control WITHOUT breaking my outsourcing model”, “How do I move my applications/operations to the cloud without impacting my work flow, negatively?”, “With compliance and audit requirements constantly changing, how do I keep pace with and update these changes implemented across software-
CEOCFO: What have you developed at Hatha Systems to eliminate or to handle the problem?
Ms. Moorthy: We have developed two things.
First is the Integrated Knowledge Stack Framework. The white paper from the press release which defined the Stack describes the current state of knowledge extraction and what knowledge is needed for successful outcome for DX and Ops Risk. Although tool vendors are positioned into the framework, the Framework is NOT for them, but is in fact for organizations with software-
Second is the development of our Knowledge Refinery® (KR) software suite which contains three products called the KR Application Analyzer, KR Integrator, and KR Rationalizer. Combined they deliver knowledge extraction and analysis within a single application and or across multiple applications for end-
CEOCFO: Are people ready? Are businesses ready for this? Are they actively looking, or is it more they will be very happy to realize it can be done?
Ms. Moorthy: I think it is a combination of both because they are struggling right now. In most digital transformation efforts, there is a huge cost burden and there is a lot of risk because of a lack of knowledge and understanding (of the current state). Therefore, when we discuss what we offer organizations today, they say, “Yes, of course we need this, this makes complete sense, and this can be applied broadly and I have a number of places that can use it today.”
Although the pain is acute, I think it is still in the early stages of adoption because the rest of the vendor community doesn’t think this way and they have controlled the market megaphone and push what they sell, NOT how to address the customers’ issue. This is usually the case before a breakthrough solution enters the market. Customers know they have a runaway train if they don’t address their issues with software-
There is an important factor and burden that requires an adjustment in attitude/behavioral change within organizations. It is the mindset that software-
The plain and simple fact is… understanding the operational workflow that makes up a business/mission operation and the underlying software mechanisms is mandatory. When organizations start treating software-
CEOCFO: What did you recognize that other people have not? Was it a eureka moment one day or a series of slow steps?
Ms. Moorthy: I joke…think of when Bonnie Raitt won best new artist Grammy, she said (paraphrasing) “I’m a newcomer with 30 years of music industry experience & career”. The reality is that, as you may know, this sort of an enterprise solution and innovation requires a significant number of years of experience and understanding. Our team was able to recognize the problem by asking questions and learning from customers. Our team is also very senior, having actually done this kind of work or various aspects of it for many years. Our Eureka moment came from understanding that both the organizations and the vendors addressing DX and Ops Risk are struggling to achieve actual success and in fact time and again are getting to a compromised completion instead. Unfortunately, it is common place that organizations only achieve compromised completion. And this observation enabled us to ask a critical question… what the gap is that needs to be filled to ensure both sides are given the adequate knowledge needed for success? And when the gap was discovered (lack of comprehensive transparency and traceability), we dove into at how to solve the problem of drawing out and linking the various components of knowledge together. Once we defined the problem, our solution came together very quickly. The team has been noodling these issues for a decade. As is the case with any eureka moments, it is always a mix of experience, timing, the right people, and a bit of luck thrown in for good measure. The eureka momentum came 3.5 years ago and we dove in and developed the complete software suite.
CEOCFO: What is available from Hatha Systems today?
Ms. Moorthy: Hatha Systems has a solution called the Knowledge Refinery. As noted before, there are three key products… Application Analyzer, Integrator, and Rationalizer. Application Analyzer extracts up both business and technical layer knowledge out of a single application. Integrator links these individual applications together to map operations end to end. Rationalizer is used to compare applications to remove duplications in software-
The Knowledge Refinery is, if you take a look at the integrated knowledge stack paper described in our recent press release, actually sits on the static analysis side, not on the dynamic analysis side. In that paper which is on our website, we actually talk about the fact that most organizations require both static analysis and dynamic analysis, in order to get a comprehensive view of what is really going on. So think of what we do as “Google-
CEOCFO: How does an implementation work?
Ms. Moorthy: Our implementation is straightforward. We establish a knowledge repository, extraction from code the layers of knowledge, and users can tie into the repository and start analyzing the knowledge of the applications/operations which has been extracted.
We work on heterogeneous language and data environments since every organization has an amalgamation of languages/applications, data bases, legacy mainframe, client server, microservices, on-
CEOCFO: What happens as new things, new systems are added, new pieces of software? Someone might have 60 or 90 now, but tomorrow they are going to add a couple more. How does Hatha Systems help on an ongoing basis?
Ms. Moorthy: Our goal is to essentially provide the platform that allows you to expand as you need. If a customer starts with 3-
An example that many can understand…. We can provide a baseline to retail banking operations. Most retail banks have Cash Management, Loan processing, Credit Card processing as three main operations. A workflow for example for many banks is the ability to deliver international wire transfer for their customers. Recently, there has been a requirement to expand the data records for international wire transfers by SWIFT. This change requires a change in not only expanding the data records, but also understanding the way in which these records are processed, and which portions of the data are used for which processes as they traverse through the operation across multiple applications. Not an easy task considering front office, middle office and back office are all involved and impacted. Imagine if you had the ability to trace through this full end to end operation (international wire transfer) as it works today. With this baseline, one is able to trace the data records through the process flows to where and how the data is processed currently and what changes are required and where. Scoping out effort, with KR and its automation, enables understanding of budget and resource requirement with scale and speed. Post implementation of change/requirements for expanded data records, the adjusted workflow and its implementation can be traced for verification, and also permanently documented. This provides the ability to deliver resilience reporting if that is a requirement to regulators as well. KR can be used expanding to other operations across the organization. With the demands of regulatory compliance and resilience requirements looming in the retail banking horizon, why wouldn’t one want such transparency? Again, this is only ONE example. There are so many more.
CEOCFO: Who are you targeting? How are you reaching out and what types of companies, industries or sizes?
Ms. Moorthy: We focus 100% of our efforts into highly regulated environments, who tend to have the highest amount of custom code, and many are large scale global entities. We are talking about global markets, like the financial (insurance/banking), payor side of healthcare, transportation, and logistics sector. We also focus a little bit on state, and local government at the moment. We are happy to support federal government if they are open – which is always a challenge.
We focus on custom code to ensure delivering traceability across all the layers. We have limitations into what we can do with Commercial Off the Shelf (COTS) software due to intellectual property rights and access to their code base. In the case of large providers of ERPs, Big Data Operations, Work Flow software, etc, we can engage in retrieving customer specific workflows implemented in the COTS platforms. However, the work flow packages which vendors sell are have IP protection and are not always open for analysis. We can work around this limitation by extracting interface data and creating black boxes around these vendor specific IP components. We are happy to work with COTS vendors willing to provide transparency of operations of course and have done so with some in the past who wanted to do right by the customer. It is depending on the relationship between the customer and the COTS provider.
With our customer base and focus, custom code is where we are the easiest and quickest to implement for immediate results. This is our focus for now. We are targeting mid-
CEOCFO: What effect has COVID had? Are people looking more to learn what is going on in their company? Are they so distracted with so many other things that they are not thinking of it as quickly as you hope they would?
Ms. Moorthy: Oddly, COVID has brought both opportunities and challenges to our company. As with any new game changing technology, it takes time to push market momentum. We started pretty quickly to engage in transactional projects with our customers which enabled us to engage and implement solution with big organizations through forward-
What was interesting during COVID was… remote work requirements. Organizations quickly realized they did not have the flexibility to be productive in all aspects of their business operations. Some activities had web/cloud accessibility making it easier to move to remote work. But huge parts of operations were challenged with lack of remote access. This revealed a significant need for further digitization of operations to enable remote work as part of future requirements/change. There are a number of organizations discussing… “is it possible to create an agile operational environment to plan for change at the operational layer, not just an agile environment within dev ops …”.
The organizations we are engaged with or talking to are realizing that transparency is a critical part of ensuring a clean smooth transition and sustainment of effective operations. We are now getting the attention required…
We know for a fact that COVID (sad to say) was an accelerator to creating awareness to organizations that without transparency, they will be left behind on the operational resilience and operational effectiveness front. The risks are significant to any organization who doesn’t have operational transparency. Another pandemic, a war-
CEOCFO: As you have started to work with more and more clients, what have you learned?
Ms. Moorthy: Honestly, I think that it is never good to underestimate the sheer intelligence and insight your customer can provide. Our customer is our teacher, they always have been. We wouldn’t have innovated without this feedback and our own analysis of market success and roadblocks. You learn so much from them on an ongoing basis because nobody knows better what their pain points are and the pressures they face with their customers, their market/competition. Any vendor who doesn’t have this mindset will become obsolete quickly. It is a continuous feedback loop for us.
An area of efforts for us is aligning channel partners to engage us. We found some are open and willing to work with us and others not so much… especially the large ones. They usually have their revenue generating workflow momentum which doesn’t easily enable the plug-
CEOCFO: Are you seeking funding, partnership, investment as you continue to grow and expand?
Ms. Moorthy: Absolutely. Yes to all of the above.
Raising money is a constant for game-
CEOCFO: There are so many new ideas in every field, certainly in technology. How does Hatha Systems stand out?
Ms. Moorthy: We provide operational transparency. That is key to understand since it is so critical to all Digital Transformation (Legacy Modernization, Application Cloud Migration, Post M&A integration, Portfolio rationalization) and Operational Risk activities (Audit, Compliance, and Resilience). We have, for the first time, provided a way for every organization who has and is in process of digitizing its operation, to do it with transparency, and traceability. Think of the control, agility, and accuracy they will achieve with such a solution.
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“We provide operational transparency which is both critical and mandatory for both Digital Transformation and Operational Risk Management. Operational Transparency = Operational Agility!”