According to Nasscom, an industry body, more than a third of India’s IT workforce, or about 1 million engineers, could be staring at redundancy over the next five years
A new report throws light on the scale of challenge India’s information technology (IT) industry faces in finding workers capable of roles that require knowledge of modern software. According to Nasscom, an industry body, more than a third of India’s IT workforce, or about 1 million engineers, could be staring at redundancy over the next five years unless reskilled in technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, Machine Learning and Blockchain. Particularly vulnerable are mid-level employees. Not only are such employees typically set in their conventional ways, but far fewer of them could be needed in the years ahead as technological advancements lower the need for human supervision of client systems once put in place, or the need for on-site visits, which companies are anyway under pressure to cut down.
What should the industry do? Without employees with the right skills, managing ever-evolving client requirements could get difficult, hurting their growth prospects. Already, the industry faces weak demand in various foreign markets, apart from visa problems and the like. As profitability gets further pressured, companies could be forced to cut jobs—never a good thing.
To avert mass layoffs, we need all stakeholders, from policymakers to educational institutions, to get into preparatory mode right away. Governments and colleges must forge partnerships with businesses to work out exactly what sort of training is needed. But the biggest burden of adaptation must be borne by companies within the IT industry. It is for businesses, or a nodal association such as Nasscom, to determine ways in which employees can be reskilled, and then institute the requisite programmes for it. They owe their existing staff as much. January, the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) and the UAE central bank launched the common digital currency project called “Aber”, Argaam reported.