This is Why I Hate Working in India as a Software Engineer

Raghuram Sukumar Career 16 Comments

Today edition of guest blog post is written by HSB fan – Deb. In this article Deb vents out his anger towards working in India as a software engineer, Indian Education systems and lack of challenging jobs for Software Engineers and Developers in India.

Hi all, it has been a long time I wrote and today I have something really nice to put forward. Yeah, the topic might seem to be well known and ventured but I thought may be a “WHY” analysis is required to actually motivate our generation.

Recently, I was hired by a German company ( Major Firm) and we were being hired from an embedded system training institute but the job profile was of a Software Developer. And the most disgusting fact about MNCs in India is that, even the companies which are not characteristically IT (like semi-conductor comp., automation, electrical etc) set up their IT divisions (most companies require IT div in varying capacities to serve their other divisions) in India and 90% of the recruitment they do are for pure (application) software developers.

And jobs are as it is less and hence you have no choice. So even though I love embedded system which requires system software development or computer science, I have no choice but to work in this position.

Due to its reputation I had expected some features from the company which I would list and also tell you what I actually found:

1. System Level Programming

Being in automation dept., I expected system level programming, but it turned out to be application level, building their application which users would use to program PLCs, but luckily I am in device integration so a remote connection remains with hardware.

Reason: The workforce here(I men bachelors) are not well versed in system details.

2. Innovation

This one is SEVERELY lacking, the work here is just copy paste, no imagination, no discoveries, I’m talking of Indian branch. There is a Research center but ONLY PhD’s from IIT and atleast MS (abroad degrees like Germany and US) are recruited and for Indians a minimum of 5 years experience is required. They don’t even trust our M.Techs; sad isn’t it?

On the other hand the new compiler concept that the firm is working on was proposed by an intern in Germany; AN INTERN!!! about 8-10 technologies of the firm are the brain child of either Interns or B.S (B.Eng) from centers in Germany, Austria, or US.

3. Work vs Talent

software engineer in indiaThe work has nothing to do with your talent, I mean even if you are not researching at least your work should be challenging and something that keeps you glued to it.

But here, there exists a code for other devices (originally written in Germany branch) and we copy paste it for another device and make some changes

Reason: There is no appropriate training procedure. The language I am talking about is proprietary to the product and company. Hence no other source for info exists for it. So its very restricted in terms of variety.

Recently I came to know that we have a Compiler development team that develops compilers from scratch for the organization’s programming language.

Obviously, I was very very interested and inquired and again disappointment struck me as I learned that the development is done by the Research team and the team of B.Techs perform only Integration-Testing.

If I’m not wrong many other companies have the same scenario and its worse for services oriented companies compared to product oriented comps.

And at every step I feel that an MS or PhD is vital if you want to grow, and as a matter of fact MOST B.Techs and M.Techs are REALLY not equipped well for advanced engineering work that these companies do (I said MOST not all, some DO have the capability).

It’s very sad that some new recruits from NIT don’t even understand simple concepts like looping (B.Techs) and their trainers are finding it difficult.

Now, I am not trying to cut out a sorry figure of Indian students, they are perfectly able for most challenges, but it’s the EDUCATION system (save the IIT’s, though one of my faculty from IIT disagrees with me on this).

I’m NOT trying to prove that I’m someone great , in fact there are thousands who are much better than me but get stuck in the IT world of India just due to couple of reasons: lack of jobs and good money!

But is it enough to keep you from pursuing your love?


  1. There is a huge typo in the last para where it should be “I’m NOT trying…” SORRY for the blunder!!

  2. You have given me a wonderful insight of company work. And also the needed education profile for it. I was stuck whether to do M.Tech in India or do M.S/Ph.D in abroad. As you said, might not be considered much. But I have a question, “is it good to do Ph.D in IIT or in foreign univ?”

      1. Raghu ! Can you earn 60 lcs ( all-most $100k ) In india being an Non-IIT ? Think (2)wise before say anything.

    1. If you want to do Ph.D. abroad, make sure that you have tuition waiver and adequate scholarship/assisstantship. Dont start your Ph.D. program thinking that after 1-2 semesters your Professor will give you funding. Many people leave Ph.D. in between because of lack of funding. Do your research.

    2. According to one of my faculty who is a IIT KGP student himself(M.Tech), in IITs the people are one of the best but still there is very little scope to learn due to the unimaginative schedule. You see brilliant people who emerge from IITs( by brilliant I mean who have inventions and stuff) who are not that great in their academics, ofcourse!! its simple maths, they devote most of their energy behind their passion.

    3. One of my faculty, who is a IIT KGP student himself(M.Tech), says that in IITs the people are one of the best but still there is very little scope to learn due to the unimaginative schedule. You see brilliant people who emerge from IITs( by brilliant I mean who have inventions and stuff) who are not that great in their academics, ofcourse!! its simple maths, they devote most of their energy behind their passion.

  3. My example: I pay around $8,000 for insurance(myself+family+kid) and $14,000 for rent annually. My wife doesn’t work and she had few health issues last year and I had to pay around $2000 including deductable.I rented a car and it was submerged in water and engine was blown.I had to pay around 18000$ towards damages as insurance didn’t cover driving in flood prone areas. I’m not here to scare anybody and just want to say that savings will be good in working in USA as long as you don’t incur any health issues,vehicle related issues or any other.Else it will eat almost 6 months to 1 year of your savings.

    1. I can perfectly relate to your experience. With one emergency expenses, all your savings could be wiped out.

    2. It was funny, the sequence… Ok the car thing can be avoided in case public transport is readily available… But yeah medicals are really expensive.

      1. Car can not be avoided in most cases as their is almost NO public transport. As of medical, if you are working, you should be covered under your employers health plan.

        Problems arise because Indians tend to pick the cheapest medical plan to save on monthly costs. Even then the out of pocket expenses can not wipe out your 6 months savings. Most plans have out of pocket expenses less than 3k. The same applies to auto insurances, where people don’t read what is covered etc and then get stuck.

        Students can also get good plans for good price.

        You can NOT blame poor planning on the system.

  4. In the age of the internet, it seems ridiculous to hear such stories.
    You think company would reject your idea because you are an Indian?
    No way. You are given this work because you have shown no effort to improve and the intern did something which was lying right infront of your eyes and you didn’t bother to do it.

    Intelligence sells everywhere.
    Please do not make general comments about Indians.
    There are lot of good folks who have done real good things in life just by their own hard work.

    Coming back to the internet age, if you are frustrated with your work, open a startup company in your own garage.
    Create some blog site or something similar, post ideas and ask fellow people to join.
    Just design an automatic robo-car, a cockroach robo or something else embedded that you love to work upon.
    Burn some midnight oil for 2-3 years and see what comes out of it!

    You can clearly bring out atleast the design of a good system or whatever you are working on (if not implement it entirely).
    Success can be achieved by just starting small and then building upon it.

    1. Seriously, have readers of HSB gone totally bersek??? I mean when did I say Indians are not worth it? When did I say that an Idea will be rejected?? Holy mother of God;;; I said we don’t have the infra, the intent of authorities and severely lack innovative curriculum AND as a result of this we do not HAVE INNOVATIVE WORK here… My God!!!
      And secondly, what do you know about me that you are reacting based on your ill-formed understanding??
      Please go through the article again…

  5. Having worked in India for a few years and then in USA for another few, I will have to agree that there is a world of difference in opportunity.

    People are way more willing to listen to engineers in USA than they are to engineers in India. It’s probably about reputation. Like it or NOT, Indian engineers (especially the ones working in Indian offices) are considered cheap resources and nothing else.

    I know that intelligence can make a difference from India too, but the point is that it’s way more difficult to get any serious attention from India.

    By any chance, my savings have gone atleast 10x from what I could save in India.

  6. That has to be the worst article I’ve read so far on this topic. The complains you make are archaic and almost sound like a 5 year old middle child crying out foul play. People with talent do well, without degree if need be. People not meant for it can be dragged through KT(Knowledge Transfer- Thats what they call it in my company) and still come out of the other end feeling more depressed and incapable of their jobs.

    And just because I had to say it somewhere, maybe even as a Vent out…My boss is a complete and utter Galaxy sized bitch.

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