‘We are sitting on a $100 bn opportunity’



What have been the key drivers for the growth of remote infrastructure
management industry globally and in India?
The key drivers for the growth of RIM services have been technical
feasibility, cost-saving and transformational value. With the advent of
sophisticated tools and technologies, the ‘remote’ manageability of the IT
Infrastructure was the primary driver of this trend. The ‘offshore’ angle
offered a significant labor arbitrage and gave almost 10 times cost savings to
global clients, which in itself was a significantly compelling cause. However,
it’s the third driver, which has made it a preferred strategy for CIOs’
worldwide today.

The transformational benefits that enterprises stand to gain from remote
infrastructure management include 24×7 expert-skill-on-tap, quality processes
like ITIL, proactive problem resolution systems, infrastructure consolidation
and optimization benefits. These coupled with our revolutionary co-sourcing
model allows customers to retain control of their strategic components such as
physical IT assets, technology refresh, policy and architecture while
outsourcing day-to-day operations.

What are the current trends as far as prevailing technologies and
solutions in the this space?
As far as the solutions are concerned, the new trends are towards areas like
regulatory compliance, ITIL process alignment, service automation and business
service management (visibility into the direct impact of IT services on business
transaction real-time). On the technology side SAP Netweaver, utility computing,
server consolidation and virtualization are the buzzwords these days.

On a higher and larger level, we can also see interesting trends like
sourcing engagements continuing to undergo a paradigm shift from traditional
total outsourcing to select or discreet outsourcing in the global market space.
More and more companies are primarily in search of flexibility.

The ‘Total or Full Outsourcing Model’, proposition entails a third party
service provider taking over the entire IT assets of an organization and running
it with a combination of on-site and near-shore services. This ‘lock-stock-and
barrel’ approach results in complete loss of control and flexibility on the
part of the CIO. In the post 9/11 world of dynamic business cycles, new
engagement models like co-sourcing approach are being opted for greater
flexibility.

Who are the major players in this space-both globally as well as in
India?
Even though most Indian IT application service providers have now started
building capabilities in this space, our real competition is with the global
giants and it is a competition of models, HCL’s co-sourcing offshore remote
infrastructure management model versus their Total IT outsourcing model, and it
is this competition, which has resulted in creating a clear differentiator for
companies like ours in the market.

What do you think of the future market scenario for remote infrastructure
management. How would you benefit from it?
The future for remote infrastructure management is extremely bright as more
and more fortune/global 500 companies are showing preference for Indian
specialty vendors like HCL for IT infrastructure management. More and more
components of the ecosystem will get added in the portfolio in the coming years.
This will make it a door opener for Indian companies into new accounts besides
giving them a tremendous cross-sell potential for mining their existing clients.

According to a research firm TPI, 325 deals are due for renewal during 2006
and 2007, representing over a fifth of active contracts; this opens tremendous
prospects for the offshore remote infrastructure management Industry too and
players like us are likely to benefit from this opportunity. We are sitting on a
$100 bn opportunity coming up in form of renewed contracts in the next two
years.

Subbalakshmi BM
maildqindia@cybermedia.co.in

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