Discussions over Tea (Of course, cutting maar ke)

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

IT : Stuck in the middle

Rediff carries the following report on the rating given by Gartner to the Indian stalwarts for their BPO operations. The report is very symptomatic of the overall ills within the Indian IT Industry at large. While as a services sector, we excel with firms like Infosys, Wipro, TCS, HCL, CTS and Satyam we have not been able to break through in the business process outsourcing. The two questions that also beg to be answered are -

  • When Indian firms outdo themselves in the services sector, why is it that there are no products or new initiatives coming from there?".

  • Are we such an IT-driven country, that somewhere we are missing out on the base domains which are essential as the foundation for any IT operation?

One defense is that the IT industry in India is made up of fresh graduates whereas the US industry was made up of professionals from other fields who moved over to IT sensing opportunity and brought along that plethora of knowledge.

And that is why products like Flexcube are like a breath of fresh air. For any BPO operation to be successful as a company-wide initiative, domain expertise (sic!) needs to be developed and intellectual capital (sic!) needs to be built.
Often companies that have invested in this intellectual capital building have had their fingers burnt when these trained resources leave for better paying jobs in the US markets. But this is bound to be the case in the nascent stage of any initiative. Also, stiff resistance is emerging from IT professionals in the US, to what they see as the loss of knowledge to loss of power to the loss of jobs scenario.

But until this gap is bridged this shall always remain an "emerging" economy.

End of Post

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