Naturally curious and exploratory at a young age, Arungalai Anbarasu, Chief Technology and Strategy Officer, says that engineering provided her with the perfect outlet for exploring these passions. “My Master's thesis (at the Georgia Institute of Technology) was actually on non-destructive testing,” she explains.
Joining GE in 2005, Anbarasu quickly developed professionally, “I started to understand why business strategy is so important for a company, which made me take on different roles in the company, from finance strategy to operations, technology, business management, and finally the role I find myself in today.” When the company became Waygate Technologies (WT), she relates that capturing the brand attention once afforded to GE was challenging. “GE inspection enjoyed such a strong presence in the NDT industry. We retained the people and the culture, but we rebranded in a way our customers would still recognise us and our services. Ultimately, we provide them with a gateway to innovation, so that, I believe, was the reasoning behind our new name.”
Data, Anbarasu states, will be the key to this expansion and Waygate Technologies’ broader digital transition. “I don't think the abundance of data is an issue; I think it’s valuable and the food for digital transformation, but the infrastructure around it is also critical.” In this regard, she indicates that ‘infrastructure’ refers just as much to corporate ethics as it does to equipment, viewing Waygate Technologies’ position of social responsibility, particularly in the post-COVID-19 world, as equally substantial. “We are trying our best to help out where we can, such as inspecting 3D printed ventilators and digital transformation can be a force for good in achieving that goal,” she concludes. “Everyone needs to unite, follow the rules, and beat COVID.
In terms of her own personal development, she considers every role and experience as integral, “The diversity of my roles and their global nature have really helped me approach business in a balanced way, yet with an exponential growth in mind. My experiences have also taught me the power of being flexible tactically, which I leverage in my current role to not only dream about the future but also enable the operations to make it real.”
Anbarasu maintains the same empathetic and exploratory attitude in both her work and personal life. Her most important role, she says, is being a mother to her five-year-old daughter. “Although I couldn't be an astronaut and explore space, I have made it a point to travel and live in different countries on earth with my husband and daughter.”
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With this greater interconnectivity of machines comes greater exposure to risk, so we have to make sure that we protect these newly formed connections.