BENGALURU: Not many were prepared for the mayhem and uncertainty that Covid-19 brought in its wake. With cases again increasing rapidly this year, large corporations, predominantly IT firms, are working on recalibrating approaches and realigning their teams.
While the last two years were trying times for the economy, the IT sector put its weight behind innovating novel workflows and processes, which helped maintain its growth trajectory, without impinging the safety of its human resources. Systems, such as Work From Home (WFH), once considered a privilege, became mainstream. Accordingly, the modalities of staffing and talent management in the IT sector are likely to see a paradigm shift going forward as well.
Among several changes, experts predict the emergence of a hybrid work model. Here, employees may choose to work from remote locations, thus adhering to safety protocols, while harnessing maximum productivity. However, offices will continue to function with staffers working on critical operations which can only be executed on-site.
“The pandemic made everyone realise that the only way forward is WFH, but the good thing is that the IT industry is very nimble and agile. Many companies even allowed employees to shift their entire workstations home, providing them hardware, bandwidth, routing, UPS, and also incentives,” shares Akhilesh Tuteja, Partner and Head, Digital Consulting, KPMG in India.
He continues: “But one cannot say work will be completely remote in future, because there are many services IT companies support that are highly regulated and have strong data protection expectations. Those tasks have to come back to a controlled environment. Hence, the answer lies somewhere in between – the hybrid work model.”
“You are definitely going to see organisations pushing their employees to start coming back, albeit in a hybrid mode. Synergy, project development and milestone management are always better when one is physically dealing with an employee,” adds Vijay Sivaram, CEO, Quess IT Staffing.
Interestingly, the Indian IT industry sailed calmer waters last year, driven by both domestic and global demand, serving individual and institutional clients. A Nasscom report titled – Technology Sector in India 2021 - New World: The Future is Virtual/Strategic Review – expects the country’s technology industry to grow 2.3% in FY2021, touching $194 billion. While exports are slated to grow at a modest 1.9% to ~ $150 billion, the domestic market will push the sector up 3.4% at $45 billion Y-o-Y.
All this growth and promise have pushed the button on talent acquisition too. “A huge move is seen towards contractual staffing. We are also seeing more gig workers being hired. You will see new skills emerging, such as Blockchain development and AI, as you will see companies adopt safer, hyperledger-based protocols,” Sivaram says.