Buoyed by the 5G rollout, employees performing artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML)-led work now constitute 20 per cent of the workforce of telecom service providers from just 7 per cent in July-September 2022, according to a report by The Economic Times (ET).
Sekhar Garisa, chief executive at staffing firm Foundit (formerly Monster), said that AI/ ML roles in the telecom sector include both enterprise business-related roles and roles that focus on emerging tech. A major chunk of AI/ML roles aims at enhancing the customer experience.
By the end of the financial year 2023-24 (FY24), the proportion of AI/ML-led jobs is 23 per cent. Staffing experts were quoted as saying that the competition for hiring AI/ML talent is rising because of a paucity of skilled talent.
AI/ML professionals are also in demand in sectors like manufacturing, fintech, and information technology, Garisa stated that firms in these sectors seek AI/ML professionals for functions such as algorithmic trading, fraud detection, and customer service chatbots.
Roles such as network optimisation specialist, data scientist, AI/ML infrastructure engineer, and cybersecurity expert are in demand, according to data provided by Foundit. Sachin Alug, chief executive of staffing firm NLB Services stated that AI/ML professionals provide business needs such as network optimisation, fraud detection, automated customer service, and predictive analytics.
With the rollout of 5G services, telecom firms such as Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel have magnified their focus on AI/ML professionals. Jio has more roles in data engineering and machine learning, whereas roles comprising skills like Java and cloud have seen a rising growth trajectory in Bharti Airtel, Garisa stated.
Reliance Industries, at its annual general meeting, announced that it is augmenting its AI/ML workforce to build India-specific solutions in the area. Jio Platforms, the holding company of Jio, already has multiple AI/ML departments. Vodafone Idea told ET it employs a fresh pool of resources from premier institutions and grooms them within the organisation according to global AI standards.