IT Industry Is On The Brink Of a Disruptive Change: Rishad Premji The chairman of Wipro also spoke about investments in world-class infrastructure, continuous upskilling of the workforce and increased focus on education and healthcare

By S Shanthi

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"The information-technology (IT) industry is on the brink of a disruptive change and an opportunity. The industry has the youngest and largest workforce in the world, a proven business model, and a global reputation," said Rishad Premji, executive chairman, Wipro.

Premji was talking at the recently concluded Bangalore Tech Summit. He also spoke about how the industry is at the upturn of a long-term technology investment cycle, driven by advancements in technologies like artificial intelligence, generative AI, 5G, industry cloud platforms, and sustainable technology.

While highlighting the role Karnataka plays in this growth, the Wipro Chairman also spoke about the challenges faced by Bangalore due to the sudden influx of professionals. "A staggering four lakh (400,000) individuals are anticipated to join the workforce in Karnataka annually. "While this is a great testament to the strength and robustness of our economy, it also means that there will be a tremendous pressure on our state's resources. Nowhere is this more evident than it is in Bangalore," said Premji.

According to Premji, strategic investments in world-class infrastructure, continuous upskilling of the workforce, and increased focus on education and healthcare, particularly for the most vulnerable sections of society, is the need of the hour. He said that sustaining Karnataka's position as a technological and economic leader requires timely and impactful measures.

He also added that Bangalore is not just the IT capital of India but also a hub for science, biotechnology, pharma, and semiconductor design, and is also a leading player in the startup ecosystem.

Premji is also vocal about mental health issues and work culture. Earlier this year, the Wipro chairman said that the future of work is hybrid. "People should have the flexibility to work from home, but people should also be coming into organizations. The reality is that you have to access talents and should also make it more inclusive. One of the reasons that the virtual model also worked back three years ago is because a lot of people knew each other. The IT services industry has seen higher attrition in the last two to three years and 40%, 50% or 60% of the people are new to the organization and have never been to an office before. I feel you cannot build that kind of a connection or intimacy no matter how advanced the tech gets. I am a big believer that we should come back in some shape and form and connecting with people has an intimacy to it that's irreplaceable with tech."

In one of his posts on X last month, he encouraged open discussions about mental health and asked people to break down the stigmas associated with it. "It's okay to not be okay at times," he said. "We should relentlessly break barriers so that we talk about mental health with the same comfort we talk about our physical health. It's ok to not be ok at times," he wrote.

S Shanthi

Senior Assistant Editor

Shanthi specializes in writing sector-specific trends, interviews and startup profiles. She has worked as a feature writer for over a decade in several print and digital media companies. 

 

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