Services Standardization in India

The entire focus of standardization in India has been to maintain the quality of the products being produced / assembled by using the instruments of certifications and lab testing which were enforcing the quality by testing through a set of standards earmarked for it. However, the key area which was bringing dollar revenue to India and contributing majorly to GDP was the service sector as well. This area lacks standardization and as such has been adequately focused in the Indian National Strategy for Standardization. (INSS)

The services sector standardization has been adequately focused in the Indian National Strategy for Standardization and has been the driving factor of creating the Service Sector Council in Bureau of Indian Standards. The council is organized for 12 sectors with sub committees for each sector and IT/ITeS happens to be one of them

Before coming to IT/ITeS in particular, let us the see what INSS mentions as the road map for driving standardization in this area.

  • Set up a national task force to accelerate service standards development work
  • Identify service quality gaps, standards required for related infrastructure and occupational skills
  • Develop fast track national standards based on gap analysis
  • Take leadership role in international service standards development work

Limiting the discussion to IT/ITeS services, the difference in services and products has not been made in the international standardization. As such if the same is being attempted in India, it is sure to give an advantage to the service sector with multiple organizations will be able follow the standard approach. This will force the existing organizations to adopt and innovate to remain relevant. Instead of standardization of the entire service sector, we need to see the user interface of the services and that should be standardized. For Example – if you give a call to bank helpline because you have lost the card, you need to be attentive enough to find out the right option to lodge the card lost information. This can be standardized by ensuring that for every bank helpline, the first option is to deal the emergency and then rest of the options follow. Similarly, an ecosystem can be created that whenever you call a helpline and there is wait time, there should be a system to call back within a stipulated time. This will be of value to the users.

There is scope for services improvement and the national task force mentioned in the INSS implemented should take the user point of view for standardization rather than the management point of view which otherwise is well considered in the current ecosystem of International Standardization.

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