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Are Software Developers Becoming the New Enterprise? The founding teams of most start-ups in India predominantly consist of developers

By Prabhakar Jayakumar

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India is home to the fastest growing ecosystem of start-ups and entrepreneurs, with more than 4,000 start-ups launching this past year alone. With the number of software developers expected to grow to over 5 million by 2018, India is set to surpass US, becoming the largest software developer hub in the world.

Next Big Idea Likely to Come from a Developer

A majority of the new-age companies are tech-enabled businesses and the founding teams of most start-ups in India predominantly consist of developers. The next big idea may not come from a large corporation, but rather, from a developer. The modern software-defined businesses have an edge over legacy companies because software developed tools and infrastructure resources are easily accessible now more than ever. While the need for a developer and an enterprise differ vastly, there are just a handful of companies today that are focused on meeting the needs of the developer.

Utilities of Cloud Infrastructure

In the past, the lack of developer-friendly tools caused software development to be a time consuming, onerous and expensive proposition. Today, open-source software and simple-intuitive-affordable cloud infrastructure enable developers and entrepreneurs to quickly build their minimum-viable-products (MVPs) and gives them the flexibility to iterate easily, until they find product market fit and eventually build a full-fledged product that can scale.

New Roles of a Software Developer

Given the lean nature of new-age companies, team members tend to don multiple hats across a wide spectrum of business functions. As an extension, today a software developer is not confined to just coding but plays a key role in recommending the technology stack and infrastructure to be used at the business. The familiarity and loyalty that a developer has built towards a product helps them turn into advocates for the product/platform at their respective workplaces.

Requirements of a Developer

The requirements of most developers are the same — they need a product or tool that's simple, feature-rich and easy on the pocket. Keeping in mind that the requirements of a developer are different from that of enterprises, providers should build products/platforms that are supportive of the developers' needs. Technology providers should do the heavy lifting and let developers focus on what they do best — build applications that solve real customer problems rather than have them spend time on platform or infrastructure issues.

India is poised to unleash a tremendous amount of innovation in the next decade and developers are going to be at the forefront of building these next generation businesses and driving key decisions that impact the longevity of the business. Companies that do not adapt to this changing dynamic and make fundamental changes to the way developers interact with their product, will increasingly find themselves becoming irrelevant.

Prabhakar Jayakumar

Global Head-Go To Market, DigitalOcean

Prabhakar Jayakumar is the Global Head-Go To Market of DigitalOcean, responsible for running the firm’s operations in India. Building localized go-to-market strategies to increase user base and driving revenue growth in India are among his primary areas of focus. He has over nine years of experience across business development, marketing and technology consulting functions in Internet and Ecommerce domains.He is an alumnus of IIM Bangalore and NITK Surathkal.

Being only the second hire for Amazon’s International expansion team in India, Prabhakar played a key role in planning and launching and marketplace businesses in India.

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