Meet Arungalai Anbarasu, Engineering Manager, GE Oil & Gas, Subsea Controls, Nailsea
Arungalai Anbarasu is Engineering Manager, GE Oil& Gas, Subsea Controls, Nailsea. In this interview she shares her experience working for GE.
What is your current role?
I am currently the GE Oil & Gas (Subsea Controls) Engineering Manager for the New Product/Technology Introduction and Direct Material Productivity teams. In this role, I am responsible for the timely delivery of NPI / NTI Programs, on-budget and with quality assured, development of Multi-Generation Technology Plans, drive product quality & process initiatives to benefit Engineering function/business and increase productivity and cost savings.
How did you start your working life?
I started with GE as an intern at GE Healthcare in Bangalore. I really wanted to get a professional experience from a reputed company like GE. It proved to be an invaluable experience, and I was offered a permanent job as an Edison Engineering Development Program ( EEDP) in our Global Research Centre Bangalore. Rotations as part of the EEDP program provided an excellent opportunity for me to broaden my technical knowledge basis while at the same time contributing to business growth.
What has been the journey to that role in terms of other career milestones?
I believe in performance and always took a job that excited & challenged me. During the EEDP rotations and an engineering role, I developed technical expertise on engineering areas & soon realised that to be more effective in a business I had to learn financials. This led me to join the GE Corporate Audit Staff. CAS helped me interact with professionals from the other businesses, learning from their experiences and knowing that we have some of the most talented people in the world working to help not only their particular business but all of GE succeed. When I graduated from CAS, I was looking for some challenging opportunities. This led me to the current role.
When did you decide you wanted to take this career route?
From early on in my career, I worked with a long term career vision to become a business leader in a technical organization. This was the feasible career route that I believed will help me build skills to get there.
What do you most enjoy about your job?
The business is going through a lot of changes & challenges. It is a brilliant opportunity for me to serve as a change agent. New Products & technologies are key for the business to succeed in the market. As the NPI manager, working on the strategies for new product and technology investments along with the product line managers in this challenging business is very exciting.
Have you had an important mentor along the way?
I have been very fortunate throughout my career to have a wide variety of mentors both formal and informal. One of my first mentors was a line manager who took an active role in showing all the aspects of engineering, since he had been in GE for over 10 years and I was just starting out. One key benefit of a mentor is that the relationship provides a safe haven to test out ideas.
How has GE helped you progress in your career?
I love new challenges. GE has offered a myriad of opportunities to learn new skills in the form of roles & trainings and be challenged every day. Within GE I got the opportunity to learn different businesses through my roles and the network that I built during my roles.
What tips and advice would you give to young women starting out on their career today?
Focus on doing your best in your current job. Being good at what you do should be a sense of pride and accomplishment. Treat each job as if it were your most critical assignment in GE. You manager, your team and your business will all notice the commitment you have to the business.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time?
I would like to continue to learn and expand my capabilities to contribute even more to the business as a functional leader in a technical business.
In your words, why do you think GE has been named one of the Times Top 50 employers for women?
GE is focussed on developing their employees. GE’s strength lies in the people, talents and skills which makes us very successful in front of our customers. GE Women’s Network is one of the tools to make sure we continue to recognize and develop the people so we can continue to be the best Company.
It provides another avenue of mentoring & development. Given the nature of the organization it allows women to express issues about work/life balance, personal issues or career to like-minded women that they may not be able to voice as comfortably in another environment. GE Women’s Network gives visibility to top women in the organization who can serve as role models to develop your career.