She started her career with ABB as a Management Trainee, and quickly up-skilled herself to understand the business holistically. In a matter of 11 years, she is now taking charge of a coveted role. Not only within India, Supriya has made her mark the global ABB ELDS community with her quick learning abilities and a can- do attitude. Meet Supriya Singh Value Chain Manager for ELDS MV & LV Switchgear division.
"As a production planner, I pretty much had my hands full, but I was curious to know more. With a good knowledge of SAP, I got an opportunity to become SAP power user developing customized programs for users with the help of REMSC team. Even till date, for any issues related to SAP, my colleagues look up to me." says Supriya.
Supriya believes in creating value for the organization, over and above one’s role.
"I looked for avenues where I could add value and more so, for experiences that could add to my learning.” remarks Supriya.
Owing to this zeal, she gradually added expense analysis to her skillset coming up with cost control measures and ways to maximize savings.
"We had a very interesting session called Theory of Constraint, in ELDS-Primary switchgear business & that helped us understand how repetitive processes can translate into bottlenecks leading to unnecessary delays. This session made me realize I could also play a role in identifying such bottlenecks and optimizing processes.” And that’s how she landed in her current role.
Up-skilling makes one an asset and often times can lead to faster growth opportunities. In 2018, Supriya moved to the role of a Value Chain Manager for ELDS Medium & Low Voltage Switchgear division, now her current role. She is responsible for improving the overall efficiency by identifying and removing bottlenecks.
"In this role I get to work with all functions, and we collaborate to find new solutions to existing problems. One of my most recent projects- Digital Project Planning Dashboard was aimed at providing real time status of orders for Primary switchgears. Together with the ABB Ability™ team, we rolled out this centralized, online tool after putting in two years of hard work. Now almost 300+ users are using this digital dashboard which provides real time information of any Engineer to order details in one click.” remarks proud Supriya.
Hailing from a family that believed in hard work and ambition, Supriya believes we all have immense potential and there’s absolutely nothing we cannot do. All it requires is a positive mindset and wings from those around you.
"I have had immense support from my family and colleagues. My managers have always shown confidence in me, pushing me to achieve my highest potential. They’ve been the mentors I could go to for any advice.”
"My family too has been amazingly supportive. I am a mother to a seven year old and fortunately I always had someone to raise my kid alongside. The whole onus was not on me, leaving me with enough bandwidth to pursue my career passionately.” she adds.
While we are seeing more and more women in the workplace now, the proportion is still skewed. ABB has launched its new “Global Diversity & Inclusion Strategy 2030” through which it plans to double the proportion of female managers worldwide over the next ten years. We asked Supriya about her views on this disproportion and she candidly shared,
"In my mechanical engineering batch, I was the only girl in a batch of 100. There are certain disciplines still where women are not considered apt. We are still told how some jobs could be better suited for us. Thankfully, I’ve had a family that did not question my choices, but many do not have that privilege. Collectively, we need to bring in an environment wherein everyone is judged basis merit. There’s a long way to that milestone, till that time, we all need to support each other as much as we can.”
She talks lovingly about her in-laws who chose to stay with her as she didn’t want to move cities and quit ABB.
They gave me the wings truly to fulfill my ambition. Usually, girls are expected to move cities in case the spouse or family is settled elsewhere. But I am glad none of them insisted I move. In fact, they willingly offered to shift with me, in Nashik and lend a helping hand.”
An academically bright student in her college, Supriya talks about her failures with as much ease.
"Math pulled me down in my CET exam. I wanted to get into the medical field but didn’t get through in first attempt. While I was saddened and wanted to attempt the exams again next year, my mother counseled me to take up whatever is available and give your best there. If things didn’t work out, I could always start preparing for next year exams.”
The advice did her work. Supriya took up mechanical engineering and ended up topping in Mathematics in Pune University, and was adjudged the best outgoing student from her college.
Professionally, she has had quite a few accolades including being nominated for ELDS global talent program where 70 participates are selected at global level. She was a part of a team of four, everyone from a different country.
"It was an excellent opportunity to work with multicultural & cross business teams. I gained new perspectives and felt very charged to work with colleagues who were almost strangers to me. Our project got selected by BL management team.”
With a glowing confidence, Supriya is happy about where she is and looks forward to conquering many more grounds.