IT & Social Infrastructure: The new pillars for disruptive technology
Rajeev Garg, CFO, Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic Private Limited writes about the contribution of technological developments towards attaining $5 Trillion economy.
If there was a time to be in Information Technology, it is now
A few months ago, after the elections, the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, declared that he wanted India to become a US $5 trillion economy by 2024, the year for the next General Elections in India. We are currently a $2.8 trillion economy and to become $5 trillion economy by 2024, the economy must grow by 12% a year in dollar terms. To put this in context, India’s current GDP in real terms is hovering around 6%, which is much lower than expected.
Some more details to ponder: 74% of the Indian doctors cater to a third of the urban population, only 11% of the population has health insurance, 40% of the roads are unpaved and national highways only constitute 3%. There are only 19 bank branches per 1 lakh adult population and 9 per lakh in rural. India is at a threshold of a huge socio-economic transformation, characterized by rapid growth trajectory and surmounting challenges - rapid urbanization, strained infrastructure, growing per-capita incomes and unbalanced urban-rural growth.
Massive infrastructural development, easing credit, and major structural changes in agriculture brings more GDP to the country. For this, states will have to become the key agents of growth to help India achieve the target of becoming a USD 5 trillion economy. They must work together and learn from each other to radically transform India. States must double and triple their GDP and implement major structural reforms in various sectors like agriculture and labour. They have to put emphasis on infrastructure and rural development.
Where is the Prime Minister getting this confidence from? Well, some facts that make a case for contemplation and analysis are –
Over 200 million upper income household
77% millennials or Gen Z
Top ten fastest growing cities in the world
Over 50,000 rural towns coming up and
More than 1.1 billion internet users.
This would be “challenging but achievable”.
Increasing the size of the economy is intertwined with per capita income,purchasing power of people, rise in demand, production, expansion in manufacturing and services across sectors, and employment.
There is a big change fuelled by technologies such as “integrated IT and OT”, Automation, Robotics, Machine learning, Artificial Intelligence, and Big Data that is changing business models, manufacturing practices, agricultural output, customisation of services and definitively changing the lives of people forever.
The trend points tsuch as 225 million online consumers, around INR 4 Billion hotel reservations by 2020, 3.5 million rides a day through online car services, 2.5x increase per year via digital payments and about 32.5 million online video streaming services consumers by 2024. IT sector has transformed the way companies produce and sell their goods and services while opening new markets and launching new models. Innovation is an enabler of higher productivity. It helps to produce more or generate greater output with same quantity of inputs which results into growth of economy at a faster rate. Great product doesn’t just happen, it needs a lot of innovative ideas, people, and processes with the help of innovative business models.
Organizations and Government will focus on automation and creating command centres for each of their independent entities be it in Central Government, State Government, Banking and financial sector or other public sector enterprises. All this can’t come from government alone so private sector too has to pitch in and Private Public Partnership (PPP) will be the key in achieving this herculean task.
IT Infrastructure and services organizations have huge opportunities around retail, content and entertainment, health diagnostics and healthcare, knowledge sharing, manufacturing, and governance. The social engagement models in a large mobile demography environment is driven by analytics delivered from the cloud and most importantly it will see capabilities, expertise dramatically change from pure technology to a business-technology engagement encompassing business models.
If there were a time to be in Information Technology, it is now. Every facet of business be it financial, production, people, process will require analytics led, socially engaged pervasive computing.
Social infrastructure, IT solutions, healthcare solutions, automotive solutions, consumer durables, FMCG retail need development in terms of superior, original technology products which can then deliver innovations that answer society’s challenges. Organizations need to gear up to be a part of this changing environment and become an ‘Innovation Partner’. It does require expertise to formulate information technology strategies that help companies improve IT costs and agility. Organizations have opportunities immediately around innovative, cost effective and comprehensive payment solutions for banking and financial industry, intelligent transport system, end to end IT services and software solutions.
The rapid expansion of data will continue to give companies more data about customers that will enable organizations to customize the product suite as per the customer’s needs.
In a vast and densely populated country like India, harnessing such voluminous data and its analysis has a wide-ranging impact. Not only, will it help in understanding the trends and investment, it will also aid in understanding the future demands that will significantly impact business decisions. This would result in companies undertaking timely measures to ensure smooth transitions for both short and long term growth of organizations and the economy.
The opportunity is before us. The possibility is realistic. Will it become a reality? Let’s wait and watch.
The opinions expressed in the article are the author’s own.