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Top 5 reasons why Indian IT professionals return back to India

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In last couple of years there has been severe shortage of H1B visas. The quota of 65000 work visas for skilled labor in US gets filled within hours of opening up. Even today, there are lots of Indians who want to leave Indian shores for greener pastures to the West.

However, Can you really call the west having greener pastures anymore?

Yes, they are greener, albeit just slightly. The gap between living in India and US / UK is reducing quite fast and it is quite evident from the number of IT professionals returning back to Homeland.

In last couple of years the number of Indians returning back has been constantly rising and according to survey recently conducted by Indus ventures around 60,000 professionals settled in US have returned to India in last year alone. That is nearly equal to Indians going to US yearly.

So, what are the reasons that have given rise to this trend?

Here is a brief look at top 5 reasons 8 reasons:

  1. Rapidly decreasing gap between Salaries in India and US. Salaries of Indian IT professionals in last few years. If you compare the living cost and salary ratio, I think an IT professional can lead much higher standard of living in India than he does in the Western countries.
  2. Opportunities! India is full of opportunities, with every MNC globally trying to open shop in India. Infact, the reason for such higher salaries in IT professionals is lack of people in this Industry. According to one recent NASSCOMM survey, India is facing severe shortage of IT professional by nearly 30%. So the IT professionals moving to India get much better growth opportunities than in the West.
  3. Most of the returning Indians are couples in the age group of 27 to 35 having kids. The major factor cited by the survey was to protect their kids from the Western culture. I am not saying Western Culture is bad, however for kids growing up in US with parents having Indian roots creates a lot of problems. Not without reason do they say ABCDs (American born confused Desis).
  4. Education is also one of the foremost reasons for Indians to move back. It is generally believed that Indian schooling system is quite good; however higher education is much better in the West.
  5. Constant feeling of getting back to the roots. You ask any Indian settled in US and you will always hear, “Wish I’d gone back to India”. If you don’t understand, go watch Yash Chopra films and you will know what I am talking about.

Readers contibution

  • I believe its more of the support system in India that people miss outside. Imagine having a kid and then the whole household looking after the new born without any questions asked. Both in-laws are very eager to take care of the kid so that both parents can go back to work with a peaceful mind that their kid is being looked after by their own people. Outside India, such a thing is a luxury. You can leave your kids in a crèche, but it blows a big hole in the pocket. (Thanks Full2njoy)
  • The reasons are increasingly for professional challenges too! Some feel that they can ‘break the glass ceiling ‘ by taking up assignments in India-which would also help them propel their career into executive positions-in a few years time. I suspect the dual citizenship helps. (Thanks Achyut)
  • One of the reasons that I see is People in India are starting to believe in Brand INDIA.Also, with the rupee becoming stronger, there is a phase shift in the Indian Economy as well. The other reason is “Few years back, India was not conducive to Startups and Entrepreneurship but times are changing now.A simple example is the arrival of major Unconferences in India which gives an indication that Indians have become more open minded and many are willing to embrace Entrepreneurship. (Thanks Himanshu Sheth)

    If I have missed any other important reasons, please leave a comment and I will be more than happy to add them here.

    "Top 5 reasons why Indian IT professionals return back to India", 5 out of 5 based on 1 ratings.
    1. Shubha Gupta says

      Smart people always make smart move…..

    2. LyDia Dia says

      Thank you very very much for this insightful info about the IT industry in India!

    3. DG says

      This is the questionaire for return migrants. From Us to India

    4. James says

      India is a huge slum with a billion people who want to leave. Sure, a few who find the West a difficult place to live in, who cant meet deadlines, whose work ethic is a little shakey, will return to India where laziness, lack of quality etc. helped to create and perpetuate the national crime ridden and backward population. Having lived around the world, and worked with many Indians, I believe that most Western countries would love to see Indians return to India. The local populations sure regret them arriving (UK; Canada; Australia; UAE; USA). Indians just dont live up to the billing they give themselves. On paper, they look good enough to fool employers, immigration officials etc. but in on the job performance, they are hopeless. Give me the Chinese anyday.

      1. James ka baap says

        I can understand your frustrations because Indians are taking ur jobs and rendering u homeless. go get urself a drink m8 ;)

    5. Manish says

      I love my INDIA.

    6. chandra says

      why NRIs in USA plan/think to come back to India.

      – they will take 2 to 3 yrs to understand that their health is lost because of migration to new geographical region. Health is always related to the climate/weather. Many people do not have a better estimate on the cost of health problems which will arise becoz of migration. After few years, when they come to know the reality of life, they will think to come back to navive places.

      – H1B visa itself requires competitive experience/skillset. While getting this experience, age also increases, with age family and/or children also will be added to the life. All these things lead to lesser savings, more responsibilities will become a burden to the life( they do not parents at home now in US), less fun( no time for fun), more stress with the technical/competitive life, change management in the new geographical region ( becoz of new culture, food, govt rules/regulations, local laws, work culture, education, shopping, no local transportation etc. ) will discourage the continuity of a person in US most of the times.

      – Nowadays salaries are increaded in India, so not a good idea to stay in USA.

      – pls rephrase my sentences if needed, I am sure about the content and meaning.

    7. Akhil Sharma says

      What about now… Brand India got kicked in the butttttt… our country is facing problem in economy because of US recession and plagued by terrorism… every other day you go out and you are not sure if you will come back… standard of living in India can never be good because of the greedy politicians and cheating people… in india millionaire also travel through same road from where poor people travel… the dirty muddy broken pot holed road… people are happier to keep the money in their pocket and living on a heap of garbage… the brand india and other talks exists because we provided nothing more than “cheap skilled labor” (which is not so skilled by the way)… people should be grateful to countries which are providing us jobs and pushing wealth into our country in all forms… although indian domestic market itself is strong and good all high paid jobs belong to companies which are outside of india or atleast doing busniess outside… if you feel bored/frustrated go back no harm, but don’t say we are great and others are not… whcih I have seen many people doing here…

    8. H1bSoul says

      [email protected] has made very good observations. but your accusation that telegu’s are faking resume is not completely justifyable due following reasons.

      1) many people, companies etc. (does not matter what race, nationality) here in US are fakes or frauds (just see what is happening to big banks and big companies:-)

      2) Telugus constitute a majority of IT talent (among Indians and even globally). even if they fake as much as anybody else they are more visible.

      3) Many people in US (esp IT) are a highly frustrated. We find it easy to blame someone easily when we are frustrated.

      4) It is networking and friendly attitude rather than faking that helps telegus have better opportunities.

      Otherwise you are right on most points.

      We should also look at this. Why we Indians in India crib about living in West; Why everyone creates a rosy picture of land they have not seen or experienced 1st hand?

      It is always a trade of anywhere we live.

    9. Jaffar says

      I dont agree with all this salary crap of getting paid less 40k and all shit crap.. if you really have good skill set and good profile, there are abundant jobs and you can get very good payrates.. About golti’s telgus fake resumes… these kind of fake people hardly survive for 3-4 mnths in a low rate project. So stop cribbing and improve ur skills……………..

    10. Susanti says

      Dear Indo-US IT friends,

      I was planning to come to US in another two or three months alongwith my husband. Im employed in TCS and my husband is employed in non-IT sector. He is going to resign his job and come with me.

      Any TCS buddies, can you tell me the latest on-site salary ?…Heard that there are was revision in the onsite salaries also!! This is my first time to onsite…How much can we save there….

      Can somebody help me……

    11. trakin says

      Sukanta,
      What lovely valid points…
      you have put across all of them quite perfectly…

      I have returned back to India after nearly 5 years..and I am glad I did it :)

    12. Sukanta Rudra says

      I am here in US on L1B visa. Thinking that US IT job market is ever green, I was very keen to take up visa sponsorship. On digging further I found it depressing to learn a lot of things. Here it goes :

      1. First time candidates for H1B get cheated by the company sponsoring the visa. They get paid very low salaries something in range of 45K to 60K even though company might have promised 85K to 90K.The reason companies cite is that you do not have enough US experianace, even though one might be having 10 yrs of Indian IT experience !

      2. In 90% of cases, the visa processing fee (varies from $1500 to $2500) never gets refunded paid by the sponsoring company, even though they may have promised to return back.

      3. You are left alone to find jobs. Often sponsoring companies has no direct clients. One has to pass hands thru different vendors and eventually get paid very low as each vendor takes his own cut of pay rates. Imagine the salary one gets if he/she has to pass thru 4 different vendors to reach his client. So it is not surprising to find candidates working for 40K salary. They have no choice but to work and they cannot return back to India.

      4. On bench there is no salary. Take it for granted. Now you have additional expenses of feeding yourself, paying for shared accomodation provided by the vendor. Imagine the situation of you have a family.

      5. Jobs are scarce. The fake job experience people (mostly Telegus, others are also there) have taken over the real experienced people. Resumes keep changing left and right, and so does your skill set. Do not be surprised if your skill set changes 3/4 times in a day. Another factor is, most big vendors have all clients and projects. As a individual it becomes very very difficult to find a good client. Eventually you end up with a small support projects with some small client. Jobs would be for 3/4 months. You only add up all support projects to your resume. This is a major factor if you still consider to work in IT for another 10 to 20 years.

      6. Often the salary paid by companies (read desi company ) is not all on W2. So they might pay something in cash and something on W2. This plays a factor when you go for H1B renewal / green card processing.

      7. One has to stick with his/her company inspite of all these odds as you have signed a bond to stay with them for 12 to 18 months. Imagine how it sucks.

      8. No training is provided for any skill set. Not even 15% sponsorship for any training that one might undertake. Again no reimbursement for any certification that you may undertake. On your offer letter they might said that we do provide training. Now we all understand how important training and certification is for an IT job.

      9. Partial recession has already hit US. Salaries have already been cut by 30%. Imagine if there is a situation like dot com bubble burst of 2001.

      10. One has to sponsor his / her travel from India and back. It is not a factor if u get paid highly, but chances are very very less if you are coming in for the first time to US on H1B. So one has to wait for 2/3 years before even thinking of going to India for a visit.

      11. Some companies may agree on percentage basis salaries. This is even more risky. You never know how many hands were exchanged when you got the job. You may land up with a job of less then $25 / hr !

      12. One might think that after working in US for 5 years he/she will return back to India and there will be many good jobs waiting in India with fat salary. Sorry folks, India now has enough US experience people. And the experience you will carry back in mostly support projects. Very very few people will have implementation project experience in US. In niche jobs, end to end implementation projects is mostly valued.

      These are just initial problems that came to my mind. There is going to be more problems once you decide to get your family. That includes finding visa for your wife/husband, kid(if u have), staying alone, etc etc. The biggest expense in US is on childbirth and death. The only positive side is that if u earn good you will have a lot to save to build a good future. But of all people whom I have digged a lot to gather this feedback, only 5% was really happy staying back here. And all of them said they want to return back in their old age. Some of you might be reading this post. Please do correct me (email:[email protected]) if I am wrong on any thing that I have stated. I would be eager to learn it from you also. Also do add your findings. It always helps a fellow brethren. Even admist all these depressing talks, do smile after reading this.

      Cheers!!!

    13. karan sharma says

      IT professionals are these days returning back to the place where the whole world wants to be ie; INDIA. Not only U.S. and U.K. but professionals from all over the world are eager to take up the gauntlet in this over 9% growing economy.

      With the FII’s investing more than $17 billion in the current year(06-07), BSE has registered an annual return of over 40%. Indian IT companies feels like now are in a knack of aquiring global giants. Also with huge turnovers and stupendous margins indian IT companies have suceeded to pay huge packages to its employees.

      Due to rupee appreciation curently IT firms are going through a bad phase.But the coin has other side too. With the U.S economy going through recession primarily due to sub-prime mortgage crisis, the indian IT firms have a great future ahead.

      There are lot of chances that U.S. may in near future enter into stagflation( inflation with economy going down). This will further bring a lot of business here due to high work efficiency and low outsourcing cost.

      I m quite sure that india is going to follow this high growth trend in the near future also and attract more and more talented and its own sons(IT professionals) to india.

    14. Proud To Be An American says

      Dear
      Indian Friends returning to India.Good Luck to you all for leaving my country alone. Thanks a million. I believe you guys never left India even though you lived in America. Your Body Mind and Soul– (Great Soul–Mahaathma) was always in INdia. You people desreve the best and I pray the god for you to provide the “missing indian thing” so that you don’t show up again.

      “Fact is this You begged every God irrespective of Religion to send you “People Only” to America so “You Only Can be Better”. I pity you for the time you spent in the lines to Get tu AMERICA to realize AMERICA is USELESS.

      “GOD BLESS AMERICA”- AMERICA DON’T DESREVE OPPERTUNISTS AND UN GREATFULL CITIZENS”.

      AMERICA AND THE GRAND OLD FLAG WILL SHINE LIKE ALWAYS AND FOREVER”
      “GOD BLESS AMERICA”-
      AN EX IMMIGRANT

      1. Gaurav says

        Hello Dear,

        I understand your feeling. This post is not saying that America is bad or India is better place but its about mind shift of IT guys as why they want to come back.

        I personally feel American culture is good in sense of innovativeness and open culture.

        Once someone start their career he start taking all the opportunities which comes in his ways. So once US companies start offering onsite opportunites and good salary no one reject such offer. Their are lots of reason as US is beautiful place for tourism, good money, opportunity to work in cross cultural team etc.

        Hatred by US people can be understandable. In first view it seems that Indians are using US for their benefits and leave their country once their job is done. But if you think and observe deeply, its not that way. I have seen many blogs when some Indians left US because of Obama’s tax policy, their American peers feel sad to lose one of their team member.

        If tomorrow you will explore any country for job then after sometime you’ll like to come back because you’ll find US culture will attract you as its in your mind, body and soul.

        I appreciate that you have read this response.

        Cheers,
        Unknown Indian Friend

    15. googledegook says

      Not only are Indians returning to India but also many foreign professionals are looking forward to a stint in India. The reason being, the markets in the UK and US is saturating as well as their average population is ‘greying’ hence a stint in India will be useful on their CV’s as the future is in countries such as India, China, Brazil etc

    16. bedesha says

      best of luck and keep it up .its good for our nations futures so i’m very happy and agree with you yes ofcourse india is not paid that much ammount to you but if you do something for your nation then the coming generation will not suffer this kind of problems which are faced by the most intellectul people in india
      i want to say just 1 think that our India is an incrideable india and don’t compare it with others

    17. Maggie says

      I think we missing the wood for the trees here. Indeed there are a lot of top-notch professionals returning to India, but the reason for doing so is probably lack of opportunities there. We must remember the US is a mature market and that most industries have plateaued there while in India the growing market gives them lot of opportunities to grow. About the standard of living, I think the standard of living ,may be better here (according to the author) but the quality of live there is anyday much better. (Ask any Mumbaikar who travels by a local train) …

    18. vj says

      as the economy starts to pick up steam and more and more start up companies are popping up, there are more reasons to go back (aside from the ones mentioned earlier)… there’s some good info on it over at india news 2.0

    19. Himanshu Sheth says

      Thanks for adding my comment to the post.Guess,you need to change the Title of the article as well from Top 5 reasons to Top 8 reasons.

      -Himanshu Sheth

    20. sanmak says

      I dont agree with your first point about the standard of living

      “Rapidly decreasing gap between Salaries in India and US. Salaries of Indian IT professionals in last few years. If you compare the living cost and salary ratio, I think an IT professional can lead much higher standard of living in India than he does in the Western countries”.

      The standard of life one can afford in US for doing the same job in US is much much greater than what one can afford in India.and the disparity between the salaries is much greater

    21. Indian Blogger says

      Letz think about it from the other angle..Is it really a matter of choice? Young guyz return if they have visa issues. We all know about the H1B visa story this year. Married couple return when their kids start attending school. They want “Indian values” instilled in the kids. Middle aged folks come back as they have old agening parents. Old folks return home as there is more care for the rupee that you spend. So, I don’t think it is a matter of choice. After a few initial settling years in US, the axis shifts ..one can afford a better lifestyle being in India

      Support System is definitely a strong factor but I don’t think could be the key reason. I personally feel that itz strongly related to Maslow’s law of hierarchy. Folks first want the basic things (good lifestyle, security,materialistic things..)…..when they get all this, they feel the need to create an impact and contribue to society. Perhaps, being in the home ground is a nice option for them at that time.

      It is not an easy decision to get back home and start from scratch. Only the brave can do it..and as they say, fortune favors the brave!

    22. trakin says

      @Full2Enjoy, I agree with you and I can relate to what you are saying completely as I have gone through it myself.
      @Achyut, it is so nice to see you here. Thanks for dropping by. You are an authority on this subject and “breaking the glass ceiling” is a perfect phrase to exlpain what quite a few IT people experience here.
      @HImanshu…agree with you too completely too….infact when I started writing the post, Rupee appreciation was on my list, somehow I just missed that point….Thanks

      I will be adding all three points to main post for reader’s convenience.

    23. Himanshu Sheth says

      One of the reasons that I see is People in India are starting to believe in Brand INDIA.Also, with the rupee becoming stronger, there is a phase shift in the Indian Economy as well.

      The other reason is “Few years back, India was not conducive to Startups and Entrepreneurship but times are changing now.A simple example is the arrival of major Unconferences in India which gives an indication that Indians have become more open minded and many are willing to embrace Entrepreneurship.

      You can also check out one article in Economic Times, which sites some of the reasons:
      http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/Indian_techies_in_US_returning_to_homeland/rssarticleshow/2357681.cms

      -Himanshu Sheth
      (Blogger at http://thoughtsprevail.blogspot.com)

    24. Achyut says

      Very aptly summarised, Chief!

      As a recruiter in India, specialising in hiring of ‘returning Indians’, I feel that this trend is not just restricted to the IT professionals. Of late, we have been noticing professionals from the Pharma industry ( read research), financial services ( PE/ VC /wealth management), retail ( supplychain), infrastructure ( though here it is professionals from the Middle East countries).

      The reasons are increasingly for professional challenges too! Some feel that they can ‘break the glass ceiling ‘ by taking up assignments in India-which would also help them propel their career into executive positions-in a few years time. I suspect the dual citizenship helps.

      In an increasingly globalised economy, it would sure help if one has international experience -particularly in one of the emerging markets ( read the BRIC countries -and it helps our good ole India is among them too!)

    25. Full2njoy says

      I believe its more of the support system in India that people miss outside. Imagine having a kid and then the whole household looking after the new born without any questions asked. Both in-laws are very eager to take care of the kid so that both parents can go back to work with a peaceful mind that their kid is being looked after by their own people. Outside India, such a thing is a luxury. You can leave your kids in a crèche, but it blows a big hole in the pocket.

      one thing that i miss is my friends. In India, everyday after office, we met up over chai, ciggies, and a whole lot of gossip. Weekends were spent going for movies or just hanging out with friends. But out here, my week entails work-home-work-home. Weekends are spent doing chores and taking rest. Nothing else.

      The longing to be at home with family and friends during festivals is even more.

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