When outsourcing grows local skills
DEVELOPMENT| Aug. 16, 2012, 9:57 a.m.
It might be argued that outsourcing specialised software engineering work to an Indian supplier could take away from local skills development and job opportunities.
But nothing could be further from the truth, says Indian IT outsourcing giant Zensar Technologies. Zensar, which has been very active in South Africa for several years, provides IT outsourcing services to the South African market and not only brings software developers and engineers from India to service immediate needs and scale, but also invests heavily into sustainable local skills development to create a balanced mix across shores.
Harish Lala, VP and Regional Business Head for Africa at Zensar, points out that it’s a matter of servicing the IT needs of the business in an environment where supply of skilled resources is not enough.
“Businesses focus on their core activities and outsource non core activities to specialist IT service Providers like Zensar, who then leverage on their capabilities across various countries to bring in the scale, efficiency and quality needed by its clients. But simply bringing the skills from overseas is not going to solve this long term challenges of not having enough skills in the country”, he says.
To create a long term sustainable model, businesses & IT service providers need to come together and develop local skills which cannot be done by academia alone. We need collaboration between academia, IT service providers as skills alignment agents and end user industry, to not only develop skills but generate meaningful employment to generate momentum. That’s what Zensar’s model is, to create that platform and bring all parties together to ensure a sustainable skills development agenda, Lala says.
“For the past 18 months, we have been sourcing suitable graduates from local universities, based on their skills and the needs of our clients. They then undergo training and spend six months in India, where they are exposed to off-shoring processes and culture. They come back employable and enter a work environment within our clients’ operations. And all this is done in collaboration with our clients.”
Zensar has its own development centre in Rivonia, South Africa, where local graduates are also trained and later on work to support the businesses. As Zensar expands its operations into the rest of Africa, this development centre will serve as offshore centre for those countries and gradually the same model will be rolled out there too.
Around 100 graduates are absorbed into this system every year. While the programme does require an investment, it isn’t a charitable exercise, but a business model, says Lala.
“These graduates are now employable, and they generate revenue for the company,” says Lala.
Lala feels that more South African companies could benefit from this model. “Developing skills is everyone’s responsibility,” he says.
MORE DEVELOPMENT NEWS
Obuasi MCE salutes Tigo Ghana Shelter 4 Education InitiativeTigo has donated new classrooms and facilities to the St Joseph R/C Primary School for special needs children. Read More
Gender disparity in tech industry worries MainOneMainOne’s Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Funke Opeke, has lamented the gender imbalance in the technology space. Read More
Tigo Shelter4Education puts smiles on faces of Tupaa pupilsTupaa, a farming community within the Ga South Municipal Assembly in the Greater Accra Region, was presented with a new six-unit classroom block by Tigo Ghana as part of its Shelter 4Education project. Read More
MainOne supports initiatives to teach Nigerian girls software skillsMainOne has for the second year, backed the Women Technology Empowerment Center’s Technology Camp. Read More
Tigo leads CSR in Ghana with Shelter 4 Education programmeTigo Ghana has unveiled its new flagship Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programme dubbed Shelter 4 Education. Read More
Huawei repairs Kampala’s Solar street lightsHuawei has reached an agreement with Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) to complete the repair and maintenance of solar streets lights in a move aimed at lighting the city without incurring exorbitant power costs. Read More
Tigo launches Tigo Digital Changemakers Competition 2015Tigo Rwanda, in partnership with non-profit organization Reach for Change, has launched the 4th edition of the Tigo Digital Changemakers Award. Read More
Scatec Solar to build first large scale solar plant in West AfricaMali will install the largest solar grid-connected power plant in the region. Read More
Airtel sponsors Accra Millennium MarathonAirtel Ghana has partnered the Accra Metropolitan Assembly as headline sponsor of the maiden edition of the Millennium Marathon. Read More
Airtel employees inspire students at Kangemi Resource CentreStudents from over 20 non-formal schools in Kangemi got a chance to interact with Airtel Kenya employees this weekend, through an Airtel sponsored- symposium that was held at Kangemi Resource Centre, Nairobi. Read More
FEATURED STORYKenyan SACCOS riding on innovation to attract customers
As confidence in mainstream banks remains low due to prohibitive interest rates, customers are embracing Savings and Credit Cooperatives (SACCO) as an alternative.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHAs curtain falls on MDGs, what next?
Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, president of the Copenhagen Consensus Centre, speaks to Biztechafrica about setting smart targets.
COMPANY NEWSMTN Business augments its management team further with key strategic appointment
MTN Business SA has appointed an industry veteran, Mariana Kruger, as General Manager of Private Sector.