Aussie SMEs look to Sri Lanka for support

| November 9, 2016

Sri Lanka is growing rapidly as a sourcing destination for small to medium sized Australian businesses. This is a win for both business in Australia and for Sri Lanka.

For the past few years, we have seen strong growth from Australian organisations utilising Sri Lanka as a sourcing destination, primarily for IT and business process management services.

These Australian businesses are either setting up operations in Sri Lanka for functions including application development or back office shared services, or engaging Sri Lankan businesses for customer service and technical support, and software testing. Many of these organisations have expanded their Sri Lankan operations up to tenfold in a very short space of time.

The most exciting aspect has been the growth in Sri Lankan services providers who are specialising in developing solutions in cutting edge technologies like IoT, robotics, cloud, data analytics and wearables. That’s where Sri Lanka is really standing out as a sourcing destination in the region.

One of those cutting edge technologies is the rollout of Google’s Project Loon. Overseen by the Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA ), the project uses high-altitude balloons to provide high-speed, cost-effective internet bandwidth with extensive coverage. The first trials of the technology have been completed successfully, with Sri Lanka set to become the first country to have universal internet access through Google’s Project Loon.

Servicing Medium-sized Businesses
The typical size of an Australian organisation choosing Sri Lanka as a sourcing destination are those with between 50 to 100 staff. This is primarily due to the smaller, more agile service providers that currently exist in Sri Lanka.With an accelerator program established by ICTA in 2011, there is a vibrant start-up culture in the Sri Lankan tech sector, supported by a highly-educated and skilled workforce.

According to a Gartner report published earlier this year, “Sri Lanka has built up excellent cost-effective capabilities and a track record to meet small to medium offshore requirements. It is excellent for setting up captives or shared-service centers.”*

Adelaide-based enterprise performance management (EPM) and business intelligence (BI) software provider CAMMS operates a technology centre in Sri Lanka, enabling the firm to accelerate software development, supporting the company’s international growth.

CAMMS started with ten employees in Sri Lanka and have grown tenfold in the past three years.

*Gartner, Inc., Evaluate Offshore/Nearshore Countries for Outsourcing, Shared Services and Captives in Asia/Pacific, 2016, Jim Longwood, et al, February 3, 2016.

Arunesh Peter
Arunesh Peter is the Director of Projects at the Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA).

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