New Delhi– In a bid to make the country a global hub for talent in emerging technologies by 2025, NASSCOM and business software solutions major SAP India on Friday signed an MoU to skill, reskill and upskill the workforce across industries.

“There has to be a big change that has to happen. We want at least 2 million people from the industry, which is half of our workforce, to be ready by 2021-2022,” Amit Aggarwal, CEO, IT-ITes Sector Skills Council, NASSCOM told IANS.

“To think of it from India’s perspective, there are about 50 lakh engineering seats and we need to ensure that students coming out are ready to join the workforce of the future. For that there has to be a massive change. There cannot just be the government doing things on its own,” Aggarwal added.

Ninety per cent of India’s population, which is approximately 1.18 billion, is digitally illiterate, according to the report “Digital Empowerment Foundation-2018” while 94 per cent of households are digitally excluded from digital literacy and IT-led growth.

The “FutureSkills” programme of IT industry’s apex body, launched in February 2018, aims to reskill 2 million professionals, potential employees as well as students in the industry over a period of next five years.

According to Sindhu Gangadharan, Senior Vice President and MD of SAP Labs India, “There is so much work to be done to get the current workforce abreast with latest technologies. This is also part of our joint collaboration. We have identified eight future skills that we would like to focus on.”

“AI, Blockchain, data analytics, Big data, cybersecurity, Cloud computing, robotic process automation (RPA) and mobile technology space — these are 8 of the future skills that we want to help drive forward together with NASSCOM. It is not only about upskilling or re-skilling. It is also about making people abreast with these technologies,” she told IANS.

Leveraging its technology expertise, SAP will support NASSCOM’s “FutureSkills” with its skill development initiatives that focus on content, evangelism and industry connects, thus, enabling the skilling, re-skilling and up-skilling imperative for the IT-BPM industry and related stakeholders in the country.

“Talking about skilling, re-skilling and building up the future skills, it is so important because the whole digitisation wave is hitting the country by storm,” said Gangadharan.

Asked about the impact of the collaboration, she replied: “This will firmly establish SAP as a thought leader in 8 out of the 10 technology domains. Impact of the collaboration will be multi-fold. We are looking at close to 2 million of people being going through this process by the end of 2020 and it would go beyond that.”

“We’ve been operating in India for the past 20 years and close to 13,000 people at SAP are operating out of India at different locations.”

SAP would provide content and enable select SAP experts as mentors for this programme while NASSCOM, through its “FutureSkills” platform, would host these content and expose the SAP mentors as experts on these technology domains which would be made available for the end beneficiaries on a zero-cost subscription model.

The automotive, textile, banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI), retail and IT-BPM are set be the most disrupted industry with the inclusion of AI, ML and data analytics, etc.

“India is known to be the hub for IT talent. As the disruption goes underway, we have to reinvent ourselves to become the hub of digital talent,” noted Aggarwal.

People from the IT, IT-enabled services industry workforce, potential workforce and college-going students are expected to benefit from the programme. (IANS)


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