The Future of Information Technology In India

We often encounter people in social gatherings and workspaces who introduce themselves as IT professionals. The usual reaction to this statement is determined by what we understand of IT and if one’s perception allows them to go beyond picturing someone working diligently on a computer. 

Information Technology is actually a concept involving the development, maintenance, and use of computer systems, software, and networks for the processing and distribution of data. Often in the context of a business or other enterprise. IT is considered to be a subset of information and communications technology.

The Birth of IT in India

The IT Services industry was born in Mumbai in 1967 with the establishment of the Tata Group in partnership with Burroughs. The first software export zone, SEEPZ – the precursor to the modern-day IT park – was established in Mumbai in 1973. More than 80 per cent of the country's software exports were from SEEPZ in the 1980s. The LPG (Liberalization, Privatisation and Globalisation) policy of 1991 paved the way for recognizing the need for establishing an Information Technology sector. 

The then-new administration under Late Atal Bihari Vajpayee (who was Prime Minister from 1998–2004) placed the development of Information Technology among its top five priorities and formed the Indian National Task Force on Information Technology and Software Development.

Information Technology & Information Technology Enabled Services (IT-ITeS) sector is a field which is undergoing and has gone through rapid evolution. Information Technology in India is an industry consisting of two major components: IT services and business process outsourcing (BPO). The sector has increased its contribution to India's GDP from 1.2% in 1998 to 7.7% in 2017. 

According to NASSCOM, the sector aggregated revenues of US$160 billion in 2017, with export revenue standing at US$99 billion and domestic revenue at US$48 billion, growing by over 13%. India’s IT & ITeS industry grew to US$ 181 billion in 2018-19. Exports from the industry increased to US$ 137 billion in FY19 while domestic revenues (including hardware) advanced to US$ 44 billion.
Indian IT's core competencies and strengths have attracted significant investments from major countries. The computer software and hardware sector in India attracted cumulative Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflows worth US$ 35.82 billion between April 2000 to December 2018, according to data released by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP).  Moreover, the revenue from the digital segment is expected to comprise 38 per cent of the forecasted US$ 350 billion in industry revenue by 2025.

The mark of Indian IT on the globe

Leading Indian IT firms like Infosys, Wipro, TCS and Tech Mahindra, are diversifying their offerings and showcasing leading ideas in blockchain, artificial intelligence to clients using innovation hubs, research and development centres, in order to create differentiated products and services.

About 200 Indian IT firms are present in around 80 countries. Highest ever revenue was generated by Indian IT firms at US$ 181 billion in 2018-19. India is the topmost offshoring destination for IT companies across the world. Having proven its capabilities in delivering both on-shore and off-shore services to global clients, emerging technologies now offer an entire new gamut of opportunities for top IT firms in India. Export revenue of the industry is expected to grow 7-9 per cent year-on-year to US$ 135-137 billion in FY19. 

India-US technology corridor has played a crucial role in forging strong bilateral economic ties with Indian IT companies, supporting more than 400,000 jobs within the US. Hence, it is vital that India works in close cooperation with the US, and that the changes in the latter’s immigration policy be built on the foundation of the collaborative relationship between the two countries. The United States accounts for two-thirds of India's IT services exports.

Apart from that, Indian technology companies have set up a large presence in the UK to serve their market and build lasting relationships. India’s increasing focus on innovation and entrepreneurship renders it an attractive destination from a talent standpoint, and equally in terms of market access. This could benefit the IT sector in India since the UK currently accounts for about 17% of India’s IT exports worldwide.

The Future of Information Technology 

The sector is in a transitional phase, where in order to sustain its competitive advantage, it needs to constantly upgrade itself in line with global trends. Given the recent developments in the global market for Indian IT services, especially on account of growing protectionism from consumer nations, it is imperative to think differently and collaboratively. Indian IT companies have shown strong character and readiness to face present-day challenges by upgrading their capabilities and offerings in line with emerging technologies.

Although the last two years were a bit stressful for IT professionals, the next five years of the Indian economy will witness a sharp upsurge in the IT sector in addition to the increased off-shore demand. Moreover, India's job sector is once again regaining the momentum, and the IT industry is amongst the top contributors. 

Amidst an environment of positivity, the massive growth of IT and Industry 4.0, and unprecedented demand of digital technology in both manufacturing and service sector will be creating a plethora of job opportunities for IT graduates in the near future. When everything in the business world is revolving around big data, artificial intelligence, programmatic, pattern analysis, cloud communication, and IoT, the future of IT is indeed fabulous proving that Isaac Asimov rightly said “I do not fear computers. I fear the lack of them.’’

- Deekshitha Jain

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The Future of Information Technology In India The Future of Information Technology In India Reviewed by EMN on June 16, 2019 Rating: 5

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