Major IT services companies worldwide currently employ 14% of their combined workforce in India, as they tap into the country’s low-cost IT and back-office skills base. Research from ComputerWire found that the top 50 IT services companies currently employ a total of 1.25 million employees worldwide, with 173,000 of this total based in India.
Of the top 50 vendors, 24 have yet to establish an operation in India. This includes US defense sector contractors such as ManTech International and Anteon International, as well as vendors from traditionally outsourcing-averse countries such Gedas AG in Germany, and GFI Informatique and Sopra in France.
The top 50 rankings do include four Indian vendors that have the vast majority of their workforce based in the country – Tata Consultancy Services, Infosys Technologies, Wipro Technologies, and Satyam Computer Services.
ComputerWire expects this total of 173,000 to reach almost 500,000 by the end of 2005, based on the projections of headcount development in the country by some of the largest vendors.
Accenture plans to grow its headcount in the country to about 10,000 by the middle of next year. Atos Origin plans to increase its headcount in India over seven fold to 5,000 in the next three years. EDS Corp expects to grow its Indian headcount to 3,500 by the end of this year, from a current level of about 2,000.
Although India forms the hub of the offshore activities of most western IT services vendors, many are setting up offshore centers in other countries in order to gain access to different linguistic and technical skills, and in some cases, even greater cost advantages.
Dallas, Texas-based ACS Inc currently employs more than 25% of the company’s global workforce of 40,000 employees in offshore locations, and Ghana forms the largest of ACS’s offshore centers, with 2,000 employees by the end of 2004. Meanwhile, Getronics, LogicaCMG, and Accenture are among the services vendors that have announced IT and BPO support centers in the Czech Republic in recent months.