Indian IT sector is making waves all over the world. Here is a brief profile of the IT industry in India.

IT Industry in India

Information Technology (IT) industry in India is one of the fastest growing industries. Indian IT industry has built up valuable brand equity for itself in the global markets. IT industry in India comprises of software industry and information technology enabled services (ITES), which also includes business process outsourcing (BPO) industry. India is considered as a pioneer in software development and a favorite destination for IT-enabled services.

The origin of IT industry in India can be traced to 1974, when the mainframe manufacturer, Burroughs, asked its India sales agent, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), to export programmers for installing system software for a U.S. client. The IT industry originated under unfavorable conditions. Local markets were absent and government policy toward private enterprise was hostile. The industry was begun by Bombay-based conglomerates which entered the business by supplying programmers to global IT firms located overseas.

During that time Indian economy was state-controlled and the state remained hostile to the software industry through the 1970s. Import tariffs were high (135% on hardware and 100% on software) and software was not considered an "industry", so that exporters were ineligible for bank finance. Government policy towards IT sector changed when Rajiv Gandhi became Prime Minister in 1984. His New Computer Policy (NCP-1984) consisted of a package of reduced import tariffs on hardware and software (reduced to 60%), recognition of software exports as a "delicensed industry", i.e., henceforth eligible for bank finance and freed from license-permit raj, permission for foreign firms to set up wholly-owned, export-dedicated units and a project to set up a chain of software parks that would offer infrastructure at below-market costs. These policies laid the foundation for the development of a world-class IT industry in India.

Today, Indian IT companies such as Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), Wipro, Infosys, HCL et al are renowned in the global market for their IT prowess. Some of the major factors which played a key role in India's emergence as key global IT player are:

Indian Education System
The Indian education system places strong emphasis on mathematics and science, resulting in a large number of science and engineering graduates. Mastery over quantitative concepts coupled with English proficiency has resulted in a skill set that has enabled India to reap the benefits of the current international demand for IT.

High Quality Human Resource
Indian programmers are known for their strong technical and analytical skills and their willingness to accommodate clients. India also has one of the largest pools of English-speaking professionals.

Competitive Costs
The cost of software development and other services in India is very competitive as compared to the West.

Infrastructure Scenario
Indian IT industry has also gained immensely from the availability of a robust infrastructure (telecom, power and roads) in the country.

In the last few years Indian IT industry has seen tremendous growth. Destinations such as Bangalore, Hyderabad and Gurgaon have evolved into global IT hubs. Several IT parks have come up at Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Pune, Gurgaon etc. These parks offer Silicon Valley type infrastructure. In the light of all the factors that have added to the strength of Indian IT industry, it seems that Indian success story is all set to continue.

Note: The above information was last updated on 21-07-2007