Australian banks may bring good times for Indian IT firms

Friday, 30 April 2010, 02:27 Hrs
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Australian banks may bring good times for Indian IT firms
Bangalore: As Australian banks ANZ, NAB and Westpac start upgrading their technology systems in large, multibillion dollar projects, Indian IT firms may see large deals coming to them. The National Australian Bank is spending over $1 billion in a core banking system upgrade, ANZ is in the process of replacing its 30-year old core banking system Hogan and Commonwealth Bank too is spending nearly $400 million in modernizing its banking transaction systems, reports Pankaj Mishra of Economic Times.

Australia's largest IT recruitment firm Peoplebank is already seeing salary levels rise amid a looming skill crisis and the demand for some skills has risen by up to 218 percent on last year. Peoplebank's surveys of salaries paid in more than 50 IT job categories in Australia's six largest capital cities during the first three months of 2010 showed more than 40 percent of job categories in Perth enjoyed salary or contract rate raises.

"This is a good problem to have. These large banking projects are absorbing whatever skilled workers are available and salary levels too are moving up," said an Indian IT professional working with one of these banks on a core banking software upgrade.

Moreover, as more companies scramble to hire tech professionals in Australia, rising salary costs and insufficient manpower will force them to send more work to locations such as India. With the growing demand for consulting and systems integration work and government-influenced IT budget spend besides the core banking replacement drives being initiated at the large banks, there appears to be a growing lack of supply. There is a noticeable increase in demand for a number of specialist and project-related skills and it had become easier for organizations to hire these available skills over the past six to 12 months, even with the low levels of unemployment experienced during the downturn.

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