Analytics – India’s Looming talent shortage

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    In recent years analytics has evolved as a set of metric to measure effectiveness of business operations in customer experience, Operations and return on investment. The Web analytics market alone grew a healthy 13% in 2004 and is expected to grow to nearly $400 million by the end of 2008.


    Companies using analytics in any form face serious problems in coming years. The key inhibitor, however, is not technology but the manpower — i.e. a lack of brainpower to interpret data, the inability to transform data into the understanding of customer behavior, and failing to define the right response. According to Gartner, by 2005, enterprises will need three times as many professionals on their analytic staffs as they need today. The demand for analytic talent today outweighs supply by at least two to one.


    In India there are about 4,000 statisticians graduating every year, of which fewer than 6% are from premium S-Schools (Indian Statistical Institute (ISI), Delhi School of Economics (DSE) and a few other state universities). The number of engineers with specialization in operations research from IITs and NITs are also very few in number. According to a survey done by Zinnov less than 7% of IITians take up a career in analytics after their graduation.


    With increasing opportunities to offshore analytics to India, the demand for the analytics talent pool is only going to rise steeply in the next couple of years. To cite an example, there were about 145 offers made to 85 students in the year 2005 according to official figures from ISI. The Salary levels for the fresh graduates is skyrocketing year after year.


    Also with India positioning itself as a favorite offshoring destination in the world, rising salaries may prompt fresh graduates/engineers from premium institutes to take up a career in analytics rather than IT.

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