Bangalore: You must have read and heard enough about the IT industry in India. And why not? After all, it is one of those sectors in the Indian economy which portray the contribution of human capital to the world. To decipher the point right, we need to analyze the position of Indian IT sector when it comes to productivity. According to a number of studies conducted by experts who have been scrutinizing the growth of the industry since years, it has been revealed that American techies are 10 times more productive than their contemporaries in India.
After providing solutions to the tumultuous Y2K issue which had rippled the turbulence across the world, Indian IT industry gained recognition in the world. And what added more to its recognition was the skilled yet economical manpower it had. Among the top players in the IT services market, TCS is the biggest in terms of annual revenue but as far as each employee's contribution towards revenue is taken into account, Wipro is the clear winner. Wipro's per employee revenue stands at $51,000.In the same fiscal, the figure for TCS stood at close to $48,000 and Infosys' per employee contribution was recorded at $43,000.
This will no more sound impressive if one gets to know that an employee of the fortune 500 listed IT companies, contribute at least $100,000 to the company's annual turnover.
The IT professionals in India find this situation refutable. According to Sushma Chakkirala, Product Manager at Oracle, there are no remarkable differences between Indian and American techies as far as their professional capabilities are taken into account. When it comes to productivity, there is no clear difference in the performance.
Sushma agrees that, the Indian IT industry has not portrayed innovation in real sense as of now but that does not mean that, the Indian techies lack in capability. For the lack of innovation by the industry, she points out the increasing attrition rate as the problem. While attrition seems to be the major issue for the every organization in the IT industry, many perceive that it occurs due to stringent organizational standards, which blocks the freedom for the Indian techies to try something new and innovative.
According to the Vice President of a leading outsourcing and consulting company, "Indian techies are like the soldiers of an Army. They will work as per the organizational standards and contribute towards achieving the goals of the organization but once they are let free to handle a particular situation, they will deliver more than what is expected out of them."
On one hand where most of the experienced people in the industry stand by the productivity and creativity of the Indian techies claiming it to be better than their contemporaries in the U.S., there are few executives who hold a different opinion.
"If we compare, American techies meet their deliverables on time compared to the Indian techies who work for longer hours but meet lesser targets. It has been seen that, Indian techies work more and build less. But the techies in India are also held back due to various reasons. As the industry is growing bigger each year, companies are trying a lot to bring down the inefficiencies," says Nagendra Venkaswamy, President, Tejas Networks.
Such an opinion might prick the sentiments of Indians who are quite optimistic about the technical skills and abilities of Indian techies but there are many research studies done by Vivek Wadhwa and his colleagues at the Duke University, which slams the conventional notion that there is a huge discrepancy between the quality of engineers and technology specialists in U.S. and India.
Wadhwa, whose statistics attract a lot of criticism, conducted a research based on the quality of American, Indian and Chinese techies. From the research, he deciphered that, 87 percent of the U.S. workers are more productive and companies based in U.S. locations produce more qualitative techies.
Clearing the air about the popularity of Indian techies all over the world, the adjunct professor from the Duke University strongly feels that, it is the diversification in the market and the cost factor, which pulls jobs for Indian techies to India. It would not be fair to doubt the education capabilities of Americans. Blaming the weak technical education system in India, Wadhwa says that despite all odds Indian R&D centers are racing ahead. The call on improving education and research in Indian educational system is the need of the hour.
The talent in the Indian IT industry is pretty huge and India gets most of its recognition because of the challenge posed by our IT services industry to the world but at the same time, there lies a fact that, this sector is yet to show some innovation which will change the face of technology. The debate on the worthiness of the techies in both the nations is yet to proved. As the time goes, we need to see who will emerge as a clear winner.