Global technology and office services firm Accenture, fighting a talent war to attract and retain high-quality human resources, has lined up a feast of training and mid-career initiatives as its headcount in India is poised to become the largest amongst its global centres.
Sandeep Arora, head of Accenture’s India delivery centre, told a conference call with Kiran Karnik, president of the National Association of Software and Service Companies (Nasscom), that training measures were part of a structured plan as it took serious note of Nasscom’s caution that India could be short of well-groomed technology workers by 2010.
The conference call was organised by
as part of an initiative to focus on the need to bridge a skills gap in information technology, which is powered by a huge army of engineers. Karnik said Nasscom had predicted that India would be 5 lakh people short by 2010, but the reference was only to high-quality engineers, and that too if nothing was done by the industry to bridge the gap.
“I would stress on this if it is business as usual and you don’t take pro-active measures,” Karnik said, adding that his reference of shortage was not to sheer numbers but “suitable people”. Potentially, this could mean a loss of business opportunity worth $10 billion, he said. Another key worry was that academic institutions could run out of Master’s and PhD graduates necessary to sustain higher learning in science and technology and also to produce more trained engineers, he said.
Arora said Accenture had teamed up with Jamshedpur-based business school XLRI to line up 15 learning modules in a 24- month course for an “HR Academy” whose first graduates would come out later this month.
Also, Accenture was exposing about 5,000 employees with about four years of experience in a partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in a “broad and encompassing programme” that went beyond technology to include industry skills, delivery methods and soft skills such as communication. About two-thirds of the people in this programme were from India, Arora said.
“Directionally, it is clear that some action must be taken (to ease the talent shortage),” Arora said. He said Accenture also had special programmes on developer and designer certifications to add value to software engineers.