The shortage of a skilled IT workforce in India is posing a challenge for growth as demand for disruptive technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Data Analytics grows, Nasscom, the industry's apex body, has said.
The National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) is the apex body representing India's IT and business process management (BPM) industry. Nasscom's IT-ITeS (IT enabled Services) Sector Skills Council chief executive Amit Aggarwal told news agency IANS that there is an urgent need to re-skill about 50% of India's IT workforce, as demand for it in new technologies remains unmet.
The demand-supply gap for skills affected the industry’s performance in 2018, due to shortage of 140,000 skilled techies for 500,000 jobs in the industry across verticals, IANS reported. "Going forward, the industry will face a shortage of 230,000 skilled techies as jobs in AI and Big Data are estimated to be 780,000 by 2021," Aggarwal pointed out.
"Adoption of new technologies will change the profile of present jobs, which will evolve into higher domains with more automation that pose challenges to the USD 167 billion Indian IT services industry," Aggarwal asserted.
The apex body's 'Future Skills' digital platform, unveiled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in February 2018, has identified 10 key technologies in which maximum job creation can occur in the IT and IT-enabled Services sectors. The digital portal makes resources available for techies to hone their skills.
According to the platform, technologies which will create new jobs include AI, cyber security, IoT, virtual reality, robotic process automation, big data analytics, blockchain, three-dimension (3-D) printing, cloud computing and social and mobile. "About 70 job roles were identified across 10 technologies that will require the future workforce to have about 150 varied skills," Aggarwal said.
Besides training the workforce in new skills, there is a need to include evolving technologies in the curriculum for the students, Aggarwal noted. "Making the system agile and flexible can help in preparing the IT workforce for the future," Aggarwal reiterated.