On Sat, Oct 15, 2016 at 8:52 PM, Srini RamaKrishnan <che...@gmail.com>
I was too tired to write down my comments last night, so here they are.
Given the exceptional milk and honey run of thirty odd years that Indian IT
has enjoyed, any news of a decline is going to skip heartbeats, Though it's
not a non-event there's no reason to panic. Though this article picks up on
the right data points, in my opinion, it does a bad job of drawing
conclusions. Exceptional claims require exceptional proof.
Everything changes with time, and so in that sense, the face of Indian IT
too has changed, there's no doubt about that. Infosys, TCS & co are no
longer the best places to find work at. Instead, Indian companies like
Flipkart, Freshdesk, Zoho, as well as many multi-nationals are the
preferred destinations for Indian IT professionals. This happens in Silicon
valley too, and with much more rapidity. IBM is no longer the Goliath it
once was, and very likely Google and Apple will go the same way in a couple
of decades. That doesn't mean they just disappear, but they will no longer
employ as many nor be as attractive.
There's a qualitative difference in the hiring criteria of the new crop of
companies that have emerged, but India has an adaptive talent pool that is
rapidly evolving to the demands of the market. In the '80s and '90s the low
skill grunt work that Indian IT majors undertook was well suited to the
limitations of the engineering talent churned out by Indian engineering
colleges which had impoverished libraries and under-educated professors.
Indians today learn software skills much the same way as anywhere in the
world, with most of the learning being done online on youtube and coding
portals for free. Given nearly everyone in India has access to a computing
device and the internet at affordable prices, they are very nearly on an
even playing field with the rest of the world, which is a huge improvement
from the '80s and '90s when the Indian IT industry grew its legs.
The global software industry as a whole though has managed to automate a
lot of the low skilled operations that used to be done manually, and such
jobs are in danger anywhere in the world. Indians do currently do a lot of
this work, and this will reverberate in the social fabric.
Besides, not everyone can remain forever in an industry where the average
employee is less than 35 years old. It's not uncommon in the US to find
someone in his/her 50s who was a software professional thirty years ago now
working in a field completely unrelated to engineering, perhaps even a blue
Indians on the other hand, have a very strong mental divide between blue
and white collar occupations, and are not used to having to entirely
rethink their careers at 40+. This will take some getting used to.
Overall, I think the Indian software market is maturing with the rest of
the world, nothing more. Tectonic shifts overall, yes; Economic earthquake:
not really; Social earthquake: mild.