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Desk of Centre Head

Col. Suhail Zaidi

Head – CII-Tata Communications Centre for Digital Transformation, CII

The winds of change have never blown so strongly in India since our independence. The growth of our economy has been one of the biggest success stories across the globe, and we are now standing at the cusp of a new revolution.

However, sustaining progress requires enabling the key drivers of growth and overcoming the prospective barriers. CII’s research on the Indian business scenario reveals one common denominator for sustainable success: Digital Transformation.


Digital transformation will bring many tangible benefits across sectors. Financially, it will have a direct and positive bearing on profitability and cost reduction (estimated to be US$421 bn by 2020). In terms of customer experience, increased satisfaction will lead to a greater wallet share in an economy where competition abounds. This revolution will also trigger innovation from among the untapped potential of our youth and, as a result, lead to enhanced product development and optimisation of supply chains. As the Digital India campaign has demonstrated, India is now ready for an all-encompassing digital transformation.


India ranks 91st in the Global IT Readiness Index and 57th in the Global Innovation Index as of 2018. Despite half our population falling under the age of 25, we lack enough highly skilled digital professionals. There’s also a seeming lack of consensus and collaboration within the industry to cumulatively bring in a unified digital transformation. And there are still question marks around critical issues such as data security, intellectual property rights and strict digital benchmarks. With these factors in mind – and an eye on the future – CII set up the CII-Tata Communications Centre for Digital Transformation. Our stated vision is ambitious and radical: “To be a centre of international repute that enables continuous betterment of organisations through digital transformation.”


Yet this vision requires several key steps to become reality. Firstly, India needs to build the systems, processes and infrastructure to handle the meteoric data explosion. Secondly, in order to remain competitive in an increasingly globalised and digital world, businesses will need to adopt new technologies such as cloud, robotics, AI and IoT built with data privacy and cyber-security at their very heart. With India’s ambitious plan of developing 100 smart cities, interlinked digital transformation becomes more important than ever.


CII partnered with Tata Communications because of their proven leadership as a digital infrastructure provider, as well as for their deep understanding of the technology landscape and their valuable expertise in providing customers and partners with world-class digital infrastructure and services.


Under the umbrella of the CII-Tata Communications Centre for Digital Transformation, we’ll offer advisory services for enterprises, host technology seminars and familiarisation programmes, launch digital skill-building programmes, offer cyber-security consultancy, and recognise best practices through awards. We also plan to host seminars and conferences attended by business leaders who will share insights and success stories – with quite a few of these already underway and covered extensively in this newsletter


The CII-Tata Communications Centre for Digital Transformation will act as a catalyst to accelerate digital change for the nation by bringing the industry together to encourage adoption of mobile, cloud technology and the Internet of Everything and spur innovation. We’re optimistic that this radical movement will enable for India’s rise to the top of global economic rankings. In the coming months, we’ll regularly keep you up to date of all happenings and developments related to the CII-Tata Communications Centre for Digital Transformation.

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Suhail Zaidi