'I Love My Job’: Working on Innovative Technologies for ‘One of the Kindest Cultures I've Ever Seen'

Sponsored by Avanade

Shikshya (Six) Khatiwada

Photo courtesy of Avanade.

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June 21, 2024 at 3:5PM UTC

Welcome to I Love My Job, the series where we hear from real women who really love their jobs. In this edition, we sat down with Shikshya (Six) Khatiwada, the Global Solutions Area Lead for Data and AI Northeast at Avanade.

One of the ways that Avanade has supported her impressive career is by going beyond work-life balance to focus on work-life integration. As for how they do so, Khatiwada highlights three key ways:

  1. Extended benefits. “Avanade offers around $2,000 to every single employee,” Khatiwada shares. This money can be used for everything from a vacation to a home office setup — anywhere you see fit.

  2. Time-off and flexible work policies. Khatiwada tells us that not only does Avanade have industry-standard floating holidays, but their sick days and time-off policies are one of the best in the industry. “The flexibility that Avanade offers is next to none,” she notes.

  3. Having a team mindset. Everyone is trusted to collaborate together to get their tasks done in a way that works best for them, without needing to spend a specific amount of time in the office, Khatiwada says. 

In the video below, Khatiwada shares more on why she loves working at Avanade. We also provide lightly edited highlights from the video discussion in the following article.

What do you find most exciting about your work?

The most exciting part about my job is the fact that I lead both the data and artificial intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT) businesses…. [For example,] we have a client who is building a digital twin for their factory. A digital twin is a virtual representation of their manufacturing plant. 

We use a digital replica of all of the equipment that's used in a manufacturing plant during either processing or production of goods and services to give us a heartbeat of the machinery. By pulling real-time data from sensors within all the machinery in a factory plant, and using this data for machine learning models, we’re able to understand how optimized the machine is during the manufacturing process and predict if equipment is going to fail or function to the best of its ability. This ends up saving our clients a lot of money… [by enabling them to do] predictive maintenance on that equipment and not wait for it to break down, which could stop an entire plant from functioning.

How would you describe the culture at Avanade?

The culture at Avanade is probably one of the kindest cultures I've ever seen… When I say kind, I mean the leadership and everyone throughout the company truly emulates a diversity of culture, a diversity of experiences and a diversity of thought… An organization that prides themselves in all of the different areas of diversity and inclusion let you be all of yourself at work.

For me, it's been a great environment to operate in professionally and grow personally.

What’s your favorite thing about Avanade?

My favorite thing about Avanade is growth. If you think about our organization, it's only about 22 years old… Because the company is still in hyper-growth mode, we get to test out new ideas, we get to keep learning and we get to keep growing. Although we have 60,000 people in our organization, we’re very nimble. We're constantly testing out new ideas, new offerings and new technologies… We are constantly at the edge of innovation, and we're constantly at the edge of change

We're not a know-it-all organization, we're a learn-in-all organization, which allows us to really keep expanding our aperture around technology and around the growth that we can enable with those technologies.

What advice do you have for women looking for jobs at Avanade?

[Especially,] earlier in your career, it's more important to be able to pursue a range of experiences rather than just a depth in one core area because skill sets and technologies evolve a lot. Being able to adapt to whatever the next hot thing or skill may look like, truly gives you the ability to create that breadth of competency for yourself.

Interested in joining the Avanade team? They’re hiring! Click the link below to browse opportunities.

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Check out other posts in the ‘I Love My Job’ series:

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