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Global Capability Centers’ (GCCs) digital transformation journey in India

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Last year has been transformative for Indian businesses, much like the rest of the world. COVID-19 adversely impacted all the countries in several macroeconomic parameters. It brought about a widespread transformation across almost every sector. During this period, Indian companies have witnessed rapidly adopting technology than many other parts of the world. It not only became a driver of competitiveness for businesses and companies in India but also for the genesis of new business models.

Similarly, GCCs in India are also at the forefront of the accelerated pace of innovation these days. During COVID-19 when companies had to respond quickly, stabilize operations and optimize costs while addressing complex people issues, GCCs played a very important role in ensuring business continuity and preparing for the future.


GCCs look to enhance business value by embracing a holistic digital transformation strategy

India’s attractiveness as a GCC destination is growing year on year. From less than 500 GCCs a decade ago to almost 1430+ GCCs in India in FY21, GCCs employ over 1.38 million (FY21) people today. The GCC industry in India is further fueled by digital transformation, expansion of existing centers, and the addition of new centers. As GCCs mature, innovation, technology enablement, enhanced service portfolio, building the right mix of Architectural, Product Management, and niche skilled talent, engagement via collaborations have become top strategy drivers for the industry. GCCs have been establishing their digital transformation strategies to enhance their business values for their parent organizations. GCCs have managed to develop a comprehensive digital transformation strategy during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Ways by which GCCs have managed to develop a comprehensive digital transformation strategy during the pandemic:


In the last few years, India has seen a surge in talent pool in emerging technologies such as data analytics, experience design, AI/ML, robotic process automation, IoT, cloud, blockchain, and cybersecurity. GCCs in India will/are leveraging this talent pool and are playing a significant role in enabling digital transformation at a global scale. GCCs will have direct and significant impacts on global business performance and top-line growth creating long-term stakeholder value – and not be only about cost optimization.


A Final Take

More MNCs will likely add their GCCs in India over the next five years and the existing 1430+ GCCs will grow in scale and scope, focusing on technology adoption and innovation. GCCs growth spurt in India will also come from new-age businesses including the consumer-facing platforms (Healthtech, Edtech, eCommerce, and FinTech) that are creating digital native businesses, and unicorns trying to solve different problems using data and technology. GCCs passed the pandemic test with flying colors when an exceptionally large workforce transitioned to the Work-from-Anywhere model. GCCs have shown the resilience, continuity, and efficiency required during the pandemic with a distributed and remote workforce. New age GCCs in India have the potential to be the crown jewel for global MNCs. For India, this has a huge potential for job creation and development of Smart City ecosystems and thereby contributing as one of the core pillars of India’s digital economy.




Download our recent GCC report: GCC India Landscape – 2021 & Beyond!

Read my previous blogFuture of Global Capability Centers (GCCs) in India – The Winning Leap

Sources: NASSCOM’s GCC India Landscape: 2021 & Beyond! report, EY