How safe is the average Indian techie’s job? Between Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” push at one end and artificial intelligence-driven automation on the other, India’s most sought-after career for two decades is suddenly losing its appeal.
India’s large outsourcing firms may be hesitant to give a verdict on policies of President-Elect Donald Trump when he gets into office, thanks to his anti-immigration and anti-outsourcing rhetoric that helped him win elections. But Gopi Natarajan, chief executive of Omega Healthcare is betting on Trump’s policies would increase outsourcing and offshoring to countries such as India.
Infosys on Monday announced the acquisition of US-based software automation technology firm Panaya for $200 million in an all-cash deal. This is the software major’s first acquisition after Vishal Sikka took over as the CEO in August last year. Panaya is being seen as a fit for Sikka’s strategy of “renew and new” aimed at enhancing competitiveness and productivity by leveraging technologies of automation, innovation and artificial intelligence.
The blossoming IT services sector in India has learnt many lessons on staffing from manufacturing. Heavy competition and the economic downturn notwithstanding, TCS has managed a 6.3 per cent reduction in the average employee cost every year over 2007-2013, as per HfS Research. The data shows that the percentage of freshers hired increased from 51 per cent to 81 per cent during this period – which the research firm points out, is the likely reason for maintaining such a low headcount cost.
The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government’s first railway budget, which envisages implementing Internet connectivity at stations and in trains, digitizing land records, integrating all its computer systems and achieving a paperless office in five years, has thrown up a billion dollar opportunity for technology firms in India, say analysts and industry experts.
Infosys will soon start a fast track career programme for high performers to boost morale of the company and has come up with different processes to help software engineers to improve productivity.
What do analysts who have followed Infosys closely for years feel about the announcement earlier today that former SAP CTO Vishal Sikka would be the new US-based CEO and MD of the $8.25 billion Infosys? Can a man who is a well known technology genius take on the mantle of Infosys’ CEO, a business role in an environment of business headwinds that Infosys faces? For instance, two of Infosys’ biggest competitors, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), the company that birthed IT services from India, and relatively newer Cognizant, are clearly outpacing Infosys on revenue and growth terms.
The Infosys Board of Directors announced the selection of Dr. Vishal Sikka as the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director (CEO & MD) of the company. Dr. Sikka is to be inducted as a whole-time director of the Board and CEO & MD (Designate) on June 14, 2014. He will take over as CEO and MD from Mr. S. D. Shibulal on August 1, 2014.