My second day in India (the first full day that I wasn’t half asleep) went well. I had to drive from my hotel in Old Bombay to the outsourcer’s office to New Bombay, which couldn’t have been more than 15-20 miles away but took 90 minutes to get there due to traffic. And the driver said that the traffic was good. And, the monsoon season hasn’t kicked in yet. Yikes!
The story is that roads in the city of Bombay were created during a time when owning a car was not something the average man did. Given the recent booming economy and growth in personal and disposable income, though, many people with even modest jobs can afford cars and it’s created gridlock in many areas of town.
My roughly 90 minute trip again took me through areas of town that looked like they have changed for decades into areas that are literally months old. Once I arrived at the offices in New Bombay I was pleasantly surprised by my surroundings: generally modern looking offices, open work spaces, full air conditioning, and good conference rooms with excellent connectivity and IT staff. It’s like any other “first world” office building so getting down to business was easy.
I spent most of the day talking with engineers, testers, product managers, and some junior architects. Everyone spoke english so well and the offices were similar to what we’d see in the States so I almost forgot I was in India talking tech. We talked about RFID, mobile solutions, open source, and some specific clinical applications. Each of the engineers was articulate, very business oriented, and eager to speak to me. They answered questions directly and easily and I was impressed that each of the engineers was much more focused on the what (the business problems they were solving) than the how (the technology). They were quite knowledgable in technology and I will be diving deeper today and tomorrow but if these guys represent the status quo in India’s outsourcing shops India’s made it pretty far in a short period of time and they’ve got a great future.