India – Public Cloud a Reality?
Posted: 24 March 2014

Enterprise grade Public Cloud is still an emerging technology in India. Whilst the overall cloud market is accelerating – IDC reported that the Indian cloud market grew by 70 percent in 2012, and is expected to exhibit a 50 percent growth rate for the next three more years – there are still challenges to widespread adoption of Public Cloud.  These include telecommunications regulation, data privacy rules, ‘cloudy’ vendor licensing regulation and of course infrastructure.

 

That said, all of the India ICT and BPO partners I spoke during a recent two week trip to India were genuinely interested in adding a Public Cloud technology to their global ‘technology stack’ QUICKLY – which means the next 6 months. This need is driven by the fact they are now starting to lose business opportunities due to the lack of operational and commercial agility in their traditional technologies.

 

BPO – the role of Cloud in enabling Global Near Shore Operations: This new level of demand was especially strong from the Tier 1 Global Indian BPO operators, who are now seeing greater growth in contracts what they term “Near Shore” operations – which they define as facilities that sit closer to the customer’s country of origin. Whilst all the BPO operators we met had a strong existing technology partner ecosystem, this ecosystem only included the traditional on premise or hosted solutions. To compliment this ecosystem they need an agile Cloud Contact Centre solution which can be deployed in days and can work for new delivery models such as Home Working at a highly competitive price in all global markets. Concurrent agent pricing models, which allow them to share licenses across 24-7 operations at no extra cost, are also increasing their interest in Cloud – as technology costs can be cut by 30-50%.

 

Local market, local infrastructure: Indian Contact Centre operators are also keen to leverage cloud, but as with other more mature markets, they increasingly need the Cloud platform to be hosted and serviced in India, not in the US or the UK. Interestingly this in-country model for domestic markets is one mandated by ipSCAPE in Asia.  As India’s domestic industry sectors (for example the financial services sector) continue to grow (a huge percentage of India’s population is still classed as ‘unbanked’) this demand is set to accelerate. Some local India Cloud players are already ahead of the curve and have implemented innovative models which leapfrog those in more mature Asian markets: an illustration is one partner who we met with who has worked with the Indian Regulator to create a Cloud Service which manages Core Banking Platforms as a SaaS Model.

 

SME’s are the future of Cloud in India: Finally, the key phrase that we heard from everyone we spoke to was how to enable Public Cloud for Indian SMEs. The majority of Cloud adoption to date has been in the Enterprise Sector. But it’s SMEs who operate as the backbone of India’s economy, as they are responsible for almost half of India’s industrial output and private employment. As Australia’s leading Cloud Contact Centre vendor, the SME market is obviously something we have significant experience in enabling and we look forward to working with our local India partners to create a new more accessible SME Public Cloud framework in India