'IT training market to be hit'

Market size in the Asia-Pacific region estimated to touch $13 billion

“Training budgets are among the first to be cut as part of cost containment efforts in the downturn. Several firms in the Asia-Pacific region have suspended investments in software certification and deferred expansion plans,” Gartner principal research analyst Asheesh Raina said in a statement.

At the same time, the pent-up demand for skilled engineers will force the firms in the region to scout for talent. The need for more human capital will encourage corporations to invest judiciously in training in hardware and software.

The IT training market size in the region is estimated to touch $13.6 billion in 2013 from $5.6 billion despite tremors being felt due to the meltdown.

“Though the certification and training markets played a crucial role in meeting the skills shortage in the IT industry, smaller training institutes and franchises in the region are finding it difficult to sustain in the current economic climate,” Raina pointed out, citing the study findings. Once the economy recovered and IT budgets restored over the next 12-18 months, the study estimated that the industry in the region would require about 1.5 million skilled personnel by 2012.

Key drivers for growth
Key drivers for longer term growth include enhancements in collaborative tools and technologies, backed by increasing Internet penetration to deliver online content.
The Indian IT training market, which was about $700 million in 2008, is fuelled by the demand for on-site deployment of certified training resources and the robustness of the domestic economy.

The resilient Indian software industry will require around 2.3-million engineers by 2010.

Shortage of workforce
The industry trade forum, National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom), however, fears a shortage of 500,000 skilled professionals in the next two years despite investments in certification and training on a select basis by many Indian IT enterprises.Software certification and training growth in Asia-Pacific’s key markets are also being driven by a number of local factors.

In Australia, the government has identified the need for skilled resources to remain globally competitive and has made $56 million available for IT training over four years as part of its $837-million programme to ease the skills crisis. 

In Singapore too, investment to expand the IT workforce is driving the market.
Singapore’s Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) will invest $47 million by 2013 to expand the IT workforce in the island state.

IDA is investing in reality-high-performance computing, unlimited bandwidth and on-demand services.

IDA is also investing $815 million to fund new information and communication (ICT) projects to help generate the skills of the next generation of IT professionals.  

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