Blog: India’s talent driving global business success

By Kealan Finnegan

India’s population is fast approaching 1 ½ billion and as of 2023 is the world’s largest population. But what makes it especially unique, and distinct from China’s comparable size, is the combination of demographics and size. Unlike China’s aging population, 50 percent of India’s population are under 30.

According to a Korn Ferry report, by 2030 there will be a global labour skills shortfall of 85 million workers and USD 8.5 trillion (GBP 7 billion approx.) in unrealised revenues. With a million young Indians joining the workforce every month, India will be the only country with a surplus of talent.

India’s workers are at the forefront of innovation and technology. The country is producing vaccines, medicines, electronics, automobiles, and defence equipment for companies worldwide. ‘Make in India, Make for the Globe’, the country’s new motto, is becoming a reality. Foreign companies are already tapping into India’s skilled workforce, not just for cost savings but for its problem-solving skills, digital literacy, and adaptability to new technology.

Turning to India for Talent

Smiths Detection, a UK-based threat detection and security screening technology company, signed an MoU in 2022 with Bharat Electronics Limited to manufacture high-energy scanning systems in India. Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, it has grown to a team of 1,100 employees spread across Bengaluru, New Delhi, and Pune. With a mix of software engineers and data scientists, they are constantly innovating and incorporating cutting-edge technology into their offerings.

Arup, another global multidisciplinary company, relies heavily on Indian talent. It brings the built environment to life through a comprehensive suite of design, engineering, architectural, planning, and advisory services. Arup’s Indian workers have contributed to largescale civil infrastructure projects in the UK, Australia, and Singapore.

Arup and Smiths Detection are two great examples of global companies benefiting from Indian workers carrying out highly technical work. They are not using India only to grow in India, they are hiring talent in India to support global initiatives as well.

Tapping into India’s workforce

To unlock the full potential of India’s talent, global companies are setting up centres in tier-2 towns as well as the more well-known mega cities like Mumbai, Bengaluru, and Chennai. There, they invest in start-ups and train talent.

The companies are also reaching out to the right talent through gig platforms. They are discovering hidden gems from places beyond the metro cities and underrepresented communities and bringing them to the front-line of technology development. The penetration of the internet and smartphones in rural areas has made it easier for skilled Indians to collaborate with these companies and work on projects that were once beyond their reach.

The Indian government is playing an active role in upskilling Indian workers. It has several initiatives to train technicians to embrace emerging technologies such as IoT, AI, and cloud computing. It’s offering young Indians opportunities to gain work experience in countries like the UK. The UK-India Young Professionals Scheme, announced at the G20 summit in Bali in November 2022, will offer 3,000 young and talented Indians the chance to live and work in the UK for up to two years.

The 21st century belongs to India

A strong sense of assurance marks India’s position in the world. For UK companies, this offers both access to new markets and the ability to tap into deep talent pools.

The UK India Business Council has a proven track record, having supported over 350 businesses in their India ventures in the last five years. That gives us sought-after insights. We help companies to truly discover and take advantage of India’s offering. We can help you set up in India so you too can utilise India’s talent to diversify your global supply chains.

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