IT Cities-All It Takes Is A Collective Will

State governments should provide better infrastructure for the
growth of IT

at a CII Seminar on outsourcing at Indore, dynamic secretary of the state
(Industries), Raghav Chandra announced that state’s intention is to follow the
footsteps of West Bengal and Rajasthan governments to position itself as the
next logical destination for IT and BPO companies.

The preparation of
Indore probably could even put the infrastructure intensive planning of Chinese
cities such as Shenzhen and Pudong to shame. The Crystal IT Park has everything,
which makes a project a huge success. Two impeccably designed buildings within a
25 acre campus offer adequate scope for campuses and smaller development
centers, with greenery and educational institutions adjoining it. What more
could a potential investor want? Also a supportive city Municipal Corporation
chief had promised all the support it needs to make work and life harmonious for
entrepreneurs willing to establish a base in the city.

A couple of years ago,
a similar seminar was held in Gwalior, where young Jyotiraditya Scindia joined
forces with the then chief minister, Digvijay Singh to fly in IT chieftains and
get their commitment to the city-a scene oft repeated now in Kolkata. Here the
high profile duo of chief minister Buddhadeb Bhatacharya and IT minister
Manabendra Singh ably backed by the ebullient Dr Gautama. The three have pulled
out all the stops in the last couple of years to get two throbbing IT parks.

All it takes is a
collective will to make a city flourish! The aspiring states should also
consider (which is possible) attracting the potential investors. Even as the red
carpet is being rolled out for the bigger players, a supportive ecosystem
promoting growth of local entrepreneurs needs to be created. There are actually
a large number of young entrepreneurs who have set up small software companies
in the city attempting to find their place under the sun.

There are a large number of
young entrepreneurs who are striving to find their place under the sun

Can they be supported
to grow and find their wings? They can get the necessary support-from the
government, willing to open up e-governance projects for them, by local industry
that can engage the services of the local IT providers by forming clusters of
manufacturing companies, which can be supported by these firms. Bigger firms can
adopt some of these smaller ones to provide them the methodology and frameworks
to execute software projects for business in the state in a better way.

All this will ensure
that an entrepreneurship culture is fostered within the city and the Crystal IT
Park in Indore itself could be one pioneering effort to make the big and small
players coexist-both in search of a common dream!

But there is an
emerging threat to the industry in general and to the smaller IT destinations
particularly that can derail the IT bandwagon even before the outsourcing train
steams into Indore, Nagpur or Vizag in the near future. It is the war for
talent, which is raging all over the country. At the conference of Executive
Recruiters Association (ERA) held in Bangalore recently, I made an appeal for a
true spirit of partnership to emerge between IT CEOs and resourcing agencies.
This would ensure that there is a spirit of planning and joint risk taking
rather than a customer-vendor relationship, that members of ERA respect a
company’s need to have joinees stay with them for a reasonable period of time.
The various associations work together to educate and counsel the volatile
members of the IT community about best practices in job seeking and job

Most industry players are suffering because of the
propensity of well educated professionals to jump at the drop of a hat, very
often lured by rapacious head hunters. Can we all settle down and build this
industry in a spirit of cooperation or will we work to bring down the industry
from the pedestal, which we have reached after years of tireless effort?

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