Working in an open culture with great learning opportunities

Cooking enthusiast Akshata Sawant is an R&D Specialist working out of Vanderlande’s Global Capability Centre in Pune, India. Since joining the company in November 2021, Akshata has discovered the ultimate recipe for success – with the key ingredients including teamwork, an open working culture and many new learning opportunities.

Author

Akshata Sawant

Senior Technologist – R&D Software

I’m an R&D software engineer and product owner, helping our teams deliver value to customers all over the world. My main task is enhancing and sustaining the software that powers our solutions in the Airports and Warehouse segments. This sees my team working with Vanderlande’s service engineers to deal with bugs and install patches at our customers’ sites. Debugging and finding new ways to make the product better than it was yesterday gives me real job satisfaction.

Although I have not been at the company very long, I know I’ve made a great choice for my career. I had five different job offers before choosing to join Vanderlande. I really wanted a role with a product-based company, and a friend who already worked here strongly recommended the company. He said Vanderlande is very open and committed to providing a good learning environment – and he was right.

If I want to learn something new, the company is very supportive. We have a great e-learning platform, and our human resources team is continually offering training opportunities. These have helped me to become a product owner, which was one of my ambitions when I came to Vanderlande.

I also really enjoy our open working culture. One of the best aspects of this are the monthly one-to-one sessions we have with managers. These meetings are 100% transparent with feedback welcome on both sides. I now feel confident in bringing forward new ideas. Before joining the company, I was not a particularly open person and would hesitate to say what I think – but now I ask questions without hesitation!

There’s also a great sense of teamwork here at Vanderlande. Finding a bug and fixing it can be challenging at times, but the service engineers share their knowledge and together we always come up with a great solution.

I’ve really enjoyed travelling to customer sites and so far have completed two trips to Cologne in Germany and Bratislava in Slovakia. They were huge learning experiences and gave me a great insight into the service we provide to our customers. I also spent three months at Vanderlande’s headquarters in Veghel, The Netherlands, working and learning together with my Dutch colleagues. (I also discovered my passion for coffee is more than matched by the Dutch people.)

To relax, I like to cook traditional Indian dishes for friends and family. They seem happy to come to the table, so I think they like what I make, although my baking often fails miserably! I also like to read books with a good story, although technical publications are always on hand as well. I guess that’s the engineer in me – I always like to learn and test my skills.

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