I have been a part of the IT industry for more than two decades, and was a firsthand witness to the breathtaking pace of technology change, disruption, and innovation over this period. I came off age in the Y2K era, survived the dotcom boom and bust cycles, and flourished during the heydays of ERP.
Across these years, IT services outsourcing/offshoring evolved from labor arbitrage and productivity/value enhancement, to a 24×7, follow-the-sun play. Over the past few years, a perfect storm of disruption, driven by exponential technologies and new business models is having a transformative impact on every walk of life.
In this piece, I would like to briefly explore some fundamental trends driving the global economy, and their far-reaching impact on the IT industry.
The world is your marketplace
We no longer live in a fragmented world with closed national markets. Thanks to WTO and economic liberalization, open market access for majority of goods and services is a norm across the world. This has an enormous impact on how businesses create, design, and offer products and services. You no longer design for a narrow domestic market, but create products/services with a global, cross-platform appeal. And this cannot be accomplished without a diverse, global pool of talent.
Diversity of talent drives innovation
There was a time when cultural differences associated with offshoring were perceived as a risk. But as recent research has indicated, a diverse pool of talent will have better ability to anticipate and understand varied customer needs. This obviously will lead to better and innovative design of products and services that could appeal to a much broader range of customers. Businesses must recognize that a diverse talent pool brings fresh perspectives, varied thought process, and creativity, all of which are essential to drive innovation.
Open economy, collaboration and platforms
With the rapid pace of disruption and technology change, traditional norms of how people learn, work, and collaborate are undergoing a fundamental transformation. With the evolution of learning and collaboration platforms, one can learn anything, anytime, anywhere. In an increasingly global and open economy, and with the advent of real-time collaboration tools, one can also work from anywhere in the world. We must recognize and prepare for a landscape where talent is no longer bounded by physical geography.
Don’t be disrupted. Be the disruptor
At the best of times, dealing with any kind of disruption is a challenge. But now we are grappling with not only technology and business model disruption, but also the sheer pace at which is happening. Just to survive, businesses are forced to innovate at a much faster clip. With the added challenge of emerging technologies, businesses no longer have the luxury of depending exclusively on an internal talent pool or local talent. In this fast-paced, disruptive landscape, inability to innovate is the fastest way to die as a business. And the only way to beat this risk is to keep innovating, and stay ahead of the curve. In other words, one must aim to be the disruptor, in order to mitigate the risk of being disrupted.
Offshoring is a smart business strategy
As I have briefly outlined above, there are numerous challenges and drivers impacting businesses and the global economy. To effectively deal with these challenges and leverage the opportunities of a global market, businesses must embrace offshoring and tap into a diverse, global talent pool. Offshoring is a smart business strategy, not only to overcome skill shortages and scale up, but also to enhance your innovation capabilities.
Reach out to me firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about how we can accelerate your offshoring and innovation initiatives.
Durga Prakash Kone
EVP & Head – Global Sales