Digitalization milestone in governance for India: Narayana Murthy
NR Narayana Murthy, Co-Founder and Chairman Emeritus of Infosys, said bringing the power of digitalization to citizens residing in India’s most remote villages is what will truly herald India’s success in the digitization initiative. The digitization of public governance is the most important step of progress for our country.
Murthy also said that for the implementation of these programs, Indian IT service companies need to play a bigger role. He was speaking at the ABP network’s first Ideas from India Summit.
“Today, our citizens have access to online retail, education, housing, healthcare, etc., but the same results have not been achieved when it comes to the digitized services provided by the government,” he added.
He said that for digitalization to work in public governance, the first requirement is to improve the readiness and enthusiasm of Indian software services companies to play a bigger role in development, maintenance and upgrading. digitized systems for Indian government organizations and improve government readiness for successful device deployment and adoption.
“Indian software services companies have an outstanding track record in developing public governance information systems in countries like the UK, Australia, Canada and the US, to name a few. some. From my own experience between 1981 and 2014 at Infosys, most major Indian software services companies derive barely 10% of their services revenue from the domestic market and even a smaller number from the government sector,” he said. he shares.
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Moreover, he pointed out that every project that Infosys took either from a state government or from the central government during this period (1998-2014) ended in a loss. He also pointed out that when it came to working on government projects, hesitation ran throughout the company.
“The best employees were reluctant to be part of a government project. Middle managers were reluctant to assign their best employees to such projects for fear that these employees would leave the organization. Project managers were hesitant to manage a government project since accounts receivable would accumulate and remain with the department even after a success. Indian software services have tried hard but have not been as successful as they would have been in helping our central and state governments with digitalization,” he said.
Last year, Infosys made headlines when the income tax portal experienced technical issues and thousands of taxpayers were unable to file their IT returns on time. However, the issue has been resolved and now the portal is working properly.
Murthy, while emphasizing the need for the IT industry to play a bigger role, also called on those in charge of these companies to learn to work with bureaucrats at all levels. “Overall, Indian bureaucrats are unrivaled in the world in their aspirations, enthusiasm and hard work,” he said.
Regarding the unsatisfactory results of government projects, Murthy attributed several reasons. For example, there are inadequate quality and training software professionals deployed by Indian software services companies. Lack of incentives for professionals to undertake projects for governments in India. Incomplete and inconsistent specifications, frequent changes and extension of the scope of specifications made to a project, unrealistic price expectations and unreasonable expectations or results.
“This discourteous treatment of professionals by clients, the lack of sufficiently trained professionals within government to play their part in a project, the lack of accountability of clients for the timely and quality execution of their responsibilities, outdated models of assessment and pricing. And as I said before, not paying the supplier for a long time, even after a successful project, is a problem,” he pointed out.
The widespread adoption of computer systems with enthusiasm by Indian governments is therefore a significant challenge that needs to be tackled with alacrity. There are a few components to this solution.
The first is size transformation. It’s complex and ultimately success will depend on the culture we adopt. As Professor Peter Drucker once said, Culture eats strategy for lunch, “…the greatest challenge for our country is whether we Indians can develop a culture of aspiration, of national pride, orientation towards solving problems with the highest professionalism, discipline, meritocracy, encouragement English education, hard work, quality, productivity, honesty, openness spirit, pluralism, humility, design desire to learn from people who will perform better than us and other attributes necessary for the digitalization of the country,” he added.
Second, the training of software professionals which will be deployed by software service companies in the Indian public governance system. Third, create an incentive system for software professionals to participate more enthusiastically in public governance digitization projects.
Fourth, the training of professionals in our client organization, both in the government sector and in state governments, to properly perform their expected role in the development of a good digitalization of the government system.