Digital services future focus of NIIT Tech, says CEO

Noida,  Aiming to be in line with the global players, IT solutions provider NIIT Technologies will focus more on digital services and increase its activity in this area, chief executive Arvind Thakur has said. "Following global trends, NIIT Tech has also forayed into the digital services space. It is planning to increase its activities in that. It has launched Digital Foresight for insurance and is focusing on digital experience, digital integration, and digital analytics," Thakur told IANS in an interview at the company's headquarters in Noida. "Currently, digital services contribute 15 percent to the total revenues and is expected to grow at twice the rate of traditional services, given the enhanced focus in the next year," he said. Digital Service is defined as an entirely automated service which is controlled by the customer of the service. There is four key industry focus of NIIT Technologies -- travel and transportation, insurance, banking and financial services, manufacturing and distribution. "We are building strong capabilities around it." The company offers infrastructure management services, application development and management, testing services, business process services, geographic information system and software products to its clients. In 2015, the company had launched its Digital Innovation Center (DIC) in Hyderabad along with Incessant Technologies in which NIIT Technologies had earlier picked up the majority stake. Thakur said expectations of customers have started changing as there is more consumerization of technology as well as new emerging technologies. "The biggest challenges now are to change the mindset of the entire workforce from what they are doing now to more value addition. They should transform from problem solvers to problem identifiers," Thakur said. "Another challenge lies in the disruptive nature of emerging services. More and more engagements with the customers are needed in these new technologies. Everybody is orienting themselves to these disruptions," he added. A couple of years back, the company roped in thought leader Ron Kaufman, writer of the best-selling book "Uplifting Service", to bring a sea-change in the culture of the organisation. "Two years ago we have appointed thought leader Ron Kaufman so that everybody is educated in service principles." The IT services sector now contributes 10 percent of the gross domestic product of the country. Export from this sector was to the tune of $108 billion in 2015-16. It plays a significant role in the balance of payment. It is one of the highest urban employers with 3.7 million directly working in the industry. NIIT was established in 1982 for education and training purpose. It diversified into service providing in mid-1990. In 2004, NIIT Technologies emerged from NIIT Ltd. "We compete on the strength of our specialisation. We add around four to five new clients every quarter. There are more than 100 clients." The total turnover of the company is expected at around $400 million in 2015-16. It is growing at the rate of 10-15 percent, which is little more than the industry rate of 10-12 percent. The company's business in the US contributed to 46 percent of overall revenues during the quarter, Europe, the Middle East and Africa - 34 percent, Asia Pacific, and India contributed 10 percent each. The company employs around 9,500 people globally. It has five offices in India. It operates in 18 countries across the globe.