N Chandrasekaran, chief executive, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and chairman-designate of Tata Sons, dismissed concerns surrounding the information technology (IT) sector here due to regulatory changes in America.
He also said constant comparison with product companies
was not fair.
Normally guarded in his comments, he defended the nature of the sector’s focus. Asked why TCS
could not become a products company and continued to focus on cost arbitrage, he said: “Let’s not rubbish the IT services industry.
We should celebrate it. If you link it to labour arbitrage, you’d be doing great injustice and you’d be talking the 1980s, not 2017. Instead of asking us why we didn’t build another Windows, you should ask Microsoft why they didn’t build another TCS.
The Rs 10-lakh crore IT sector faces concerns over regulatory uncertainty in the US and the impact of the British decision to leave the European Union. Add to this, the challenge of a digital transition. However, Chandrasekharan dismissed these worries.
“Every time there is a regulation change or a perceived challenge, whether H1B (visas) or increase in visa fee, people talk about the IT industry
being in trouble. It is the most exciting industry
to be in,” he said at the Nasscom India Leadership Forum.
There was ample opportunity and the current digital transformation will only help expand the opportunity pie, he said. “There is no turbulence; it is only opportunity,” he added.
He underlined that this was the most exciting time for IT, when almost every other segment was getting reimagined, redefined and embedded with their technology. “The demand (growth) you’ll see is exponential. And, it will always be about tweaking of business models. There are so many parameters we need to play with. It is almost like a cricket pitch, where an occasional ball will do something.”
However, he agreed the current wave of change needed reskilling of talent. “You need to build skills, hire the right talent and re-engineer senior people towards an agile way of doing business.”
has 378,497 staffers and almost 190,000 of them have been equipped with digital capabilities, it says. Nasscom says the IT industry, which has hires a total of 3.9 million people, has reskilled 3-3.5 million on digital technologies.