Business Today

Teaching the techies

Tech giants are setting up ‘universities’ to train engineers and techies to suit their business needs.

Print Edition: April 19, 2009

Faced with a shortage of talent across segments such as software testing, storage and networking, many multinational tech giants are setting up software universities or academies to fill specific skills gap.

The latest to join this list is Hewlett-Packard, which has tied up with the Indian Institute of Hardware Technology (IIHT) to train techies in software testing, which is growing at 56 per cent annually and is expected to become a $13-billion market by 2010. “Over $380 million is spent each year on training. We are looking at over 10,000 aspirants to be trained in the first year,” says Roy Chermana, Director, HP Software Education, Hewlett-Packard Asia Pacific & Japan.

Others have already jumped into this market. Storage giant EMC, for example, launched EMC Academic Alliance in April 2006, to bridge the skill gap in the information infrastructure market.

Networking giant Cisco also has the Cisco Networking Academy Programme. “It is spread across 23 states and Union Territories,” says Lokesh Mehra, Manager-Corporate Responsibility, Cisco South Asia.

The company has recently launched two other initiatives— Learning@Cisco and the Global Talent Acceleration Programme, to support the firm’s plan to develop India into a hub for many of its activities.

“Organisations have to not only store information but also archive it on a regular basis. This calls for specialised skill sets which are simply not available in the market today,” says Krishna Kant, Senior Programme Manager, EMC Academic Alliance Programme.


From the ground up

  • Despite a seemingly vast pool of talent, the IT industry faces critical shortage in key areas

  • MNC tech firms are outsourcing training to both training institutes and academic institutions

  • The certifications are globally valid, making them much sought-after outside India, too

  • Companies have ambitious plans for these academies; HP, for instance, plans to train 25,000 people in software testing by 2010


— Rahul Sachitanand

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