Availability of a talented workforce and access to the North Carolina Community College System are at the top of the list of reasons why Infosys selected Raleigh for 2,000 new jobs, says the firm’s president and deputy chief operating officer.

In the second of an exclusive Q&A, Ravi Kumar talks about the company’s decision process. Also Tuesday, Kumar disclosed the expansion, which was originally announced in July, would take place in Raleigh and that Infosys will be hiring Americans.

[VIDEO: Kumar spoke at a workforce development forum on Tuesday in Raleigh. Check out the video of the forum at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7U86tvINVk{/a}}. ]

The Q&A:

  • What were the most important reasons for Infosys selecting NC for expansions and so many jobs?

We are making this investment in North Carolina because of the strength of the state’s innovation economy, proximity to numerous existing Infosys clients, and opportunities for research and training partnerships with companies within the Research Triangle Park and with the state’s top colleges and universities.

We are especially looking forward to partnering with the North Carolina Community College System to create a customized program designed to train the workforce of the future right here in the state.

  • Asked about state and local tax incentives’ importance to the decision, Kumar chose inside to talk about education and workforce.

As we’ve mentioned before, we decided to build a Technology and Innovation Hub in North Carolina because of the state’s reputation as a thriving center of technology innovation; the large number of existing Infosys clients based in the region in such sectors as IT, life sciences, clean technology and advanced manufacturing; and the potential for partnering with the state’s tier-one research universities and North Carolina Community College System.

  • You are speaking at an event Tuesday about workforce development and employment recruiting. What are the most important points you will make, and why?

Our people are our greatest asset. The Raleigh facility will offer them the continuous learning opportunities and support they need to bring Infosys’s North Carolina clients the very best in innovation. Reskilling and upskilling local workers in North Carolina is critical to Infosys’s mission of delivering cutting-edge solutions to our clients, which will help to ensure that these American companies remain competitive in the new technology economy.

That is why we are working with the North Carolina Community College System to create a customized training program for both recent graduates and local professionals who are seeking to grow their careers in informational technology and computer science.

The new Raleigh facility is designed to maximize the benefits of the $3 million grant contributed by the state.

Our focus is on delivering intelligent technologies of tomorrow such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, data and advanced analytics. These are technologies that will create more jobs and allow our customers to offer new products and solutions.

Infosys has a strong tradition of lifelong learning and education that has equipped us to adopt this approach of always looking forward to the innovations and skills of the future, which is why it’s vital to create new talents, skills and partnerships. Workforce development and local employee recruitment supports not only our commitment to hire 10,000 American workers by 2021, but also to shrink the IT skills gap here in the U.S. through education.