NASSCOM estimates that the IT industry in India will create 2.50 lakh jobs in 2018, as compared to nearly 3 lakh in 2017. Most of the entry level jobs for coding will be entrusted to machines. Increased demand for automation in software delivery services will cost many young engineers their jobs.

IT industry in India

Experts reveal that the entire software delivery process has evolved because of analytics, Artificial Intelligence (AI), IoT (Internet of Things) and automation. Big techies are opting to hire in an agile way which means the demand for on-demand resource will maximise. Professionals with 2-8 years of experience will be impacted the most.

Another report by HfS Research states that AI and automation will trim 7-10% of the IT industry in India would generate more jobs by 2022. Not just IT, but other sectors like healthcare, banking & insurance, FMCG, and travel portals are leveraging AI for enhanced productivity.

It’s a story of new job creation outnumbering the job losses

This is a paradoxical situation. At the first instance, the news of job cuts may seem disappointing, but there is also a silver lining to it. Tech giants in IT industry in India including TCS, Infosys, Wipro and Cognizant are planning to replace repetitive roles like software maintenance and testing using Artificial Intelligence and Automation.

However, they have also mentioned about the replaced engineers being allotted new and complex roles based on their domain expertise. Instead of looking at technology disruption as a job killer, we need to look at it as a new-age job creator. Surely, the mundane jobs will be automated but there has to be someone responsible to design and execute this automation as well. Union IT Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad, aptly said, “If a new technology displaces one job, it creates 20 more jobs”.

Below is a list of top jobs that technology has generated in the past few years:

(1) Data Scientist:

These are highly skilled people, preferably with statistics and mathematics background, who can generate refined results using Big Data. Data Scientists require a skill set that is a mix of computing, programming as well as analytics. Currently, there is a centralized data science team at most organisations, but in future there may be a data science member for each business unit.

(2) Machine Learning expert:

Machine Learning experts are programming exponents who develop algorithms which can “learn” from the data or condition itself to data to make predictions.  These experts are sure to be in demand by Banking & Finance, e-commerce, travel and healthcare sectors. The skills required by ML experts are programming, computer engineering, probability & statistics, data modelling & evaluation.

(3) Full stack web developer:

Full-stack web developers are all-rounders, who can work on the front-end as well as back-end portions of the application. This is not the age of specialization but having end-to-end skills. As a full-stack professional you need to be well-versed with Database management, Programming, Networking, API, User Interface, Security etc.

(4) Artificial Intelligence Engineer:

Artificial Intelligence is a branch of computer science that involves development of machines which can think and behave like human beings. AI engineers program the machine in speech recognition, game playing, language detection, robotics and many more. A career in AI is in huge demand because the domain is multi-disciplinary. The roles for AI engineer can be Game programmer, Robotics, Software Developer etc. Gartner projects that AI will generate 2.3 million new jobs while reducing only 1.8 million jobs in 2020.

Recalibrating your skillset is the only survival strategy

‘Future of Jobs in India’, a study done jointly by FICCI and Nasscom with EY reveals that technology disruption will impact IT/ITeS, retail, banking & financial services, textile and automobile. These are the 5 manufacturing and services sectors in India that generates maximum jobs in India. Automation and AI will create new jobs in future that will outnumber the current job losses.

The study also found that 9% of IT industry in India 600 million estimated workforce would do jobs that are non-existent today. At the same time, 37% of them would do jobs that have completely different skill sets. This is a clear case of re-skill or perish from the workforce. We are standing at the cusp of major metamorphosis on the employment front. Acquiring new skills, working on transferable skills and being open to continuous learning are the three qualities that will help you to survive in this phase.