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Insights How Atkins gave Haima the opportunity to fulfil her digital aspiration

Our New Digital Director at Atkins India, Haima Haldar, re-joined us earlier this year. Find out more about what made her join Atkins again, her role, her passion for ED&I, what she loves about being a part of Atkins and more about her career in digital.

digital director at atkins india

What is your current role?

“I am leading the digital initiatives in Atkins’ Global Technology Centre (GTC) and making sure that the various initiatives that are taking place in that program are getting delivered effectively as per our commitments.”

What do you usually like doing apart from work?

“I am quite passionate about animals and spend a lot of my time in rescues, feeding stray dogs and taking care of them. It gives me immense joy to safeguard and take care of the environment even in terms of sustainability. Today, businesses have a huge role to play in making the world more sustainable and people in the business are the initiators of a sustainable future.”

What impact or difference do you make with your work?

“I always try to look at things in the long run perspective, we generally tend to only look at our immediate goals but I like to make a difference by seeing the new opportunities coming ahead eventually or in the long run from a strategic viewpoint. 

I believe we tend to miss out on the bigger picture while focusing on the short run but we cannot avoid the small details therefore it is necessary to do it in terms of the context of situations as well, it surely does help us to achieve greater heights.”

What advice you would give to people in their early careers?

“I believe that one must be technically grounded because no matter which career stream, one cannot bypass technical knowledge and acumen, it makes up the foundation for a strong building. 

Once the core competency of an individual is built it is easier to branch out into various categories and currently, youngsters tend to shift their streams rapidly, therefore, I would advise staying close to their core for a few years rather than shifting. You can be a much stronger leader if you are grounded with strong foundations.”

What projects you have worked on?

“I started out as an Architect in the UK Architect team back in 2008 therefore I got to work on projects of building schools and hospitals. But I also led the first BIM Project from the GTC Team, when we delivered a few schools under the BIM Project in the UK for a contractor and since then I was associated with forming the BIM Centre of excellence in the GTC. 

We started with a handful and reached above 1000 BIM members on the team and setting that up was one of the biggest projects I worked on back in 2008 as BIM is the starting point of any project, we became the centre of excellence for that as well.”

What's the coolest thing you’ve been part of with Atkins?

“The digital futures program is the coolest thing I’d say because it just makes you view design and engineering through a different lens, my interest in all things digital and the way one can perform the simplest of tasks from an automating mindset by reusing things from the past.

Leading the ED&I initiative for a year is another achievement I would consider as seeing it now it has become so prominent in its stance at Atkins for so many years. The perspective of bringing in different categories and layers of inclusivity which earlier used to be portrayed as only having more women in the organisation but I looked at it from a different outlook where we have different types of people such as the LGBTQ community or people with disability. 

I believe since I left the initiative has become even stronger; therefore, setting it up has been a great journey for me.”

What’s your take on the ED&I initiative?

“My take on ED&I is that if the same kind of people make quite important decisions, then we tend to have just similar minds and thoughts across the table. We cannot solve diverse problems if we don’t have out-of-box thinkers within the business. 

I believe that more the diverse kind of people included we shall have budding ideas and different thoughts as different perspectives and experiences come into the picture. This makes a company much more robust and healthy in its decision-making. 

ED&I is about ethnicity, culture, race, social orientation and so much more. It means really accepting people different from you by being an ally and showing one’s maturity towards difference by being a professional.”

What are your thoughts on the recent collaboration of Atkins as the bronze sponsor for the pride circle?

“I think it is a huge statement that was made by Atkins and really acting as an ally towards the community as we all know that there is a lot of stigmas associated with the LGBTQ+ community in India. 

Every community member can say that they have felt biased or harassed at their workplace, let alone find a job. Certain LGBTQ+ community members are really struggling in terms of finding employment or education. This step will empower the community and I am really glad about how Atkins looks toward such initiatives.”

What do you like about working at Atkins?

“Atkins gives you the opportunity to fulfil your aspirations. If I look back at my career and parts of my journey, at some points when I would ask my manager if there were any opportunities for me, I would be told to create my own opportunities. 

Atkins has always been passionate about giving its employees chances to build their own opportunities and explore widely, rather than waiting for an opportunity to be given to one. I started off as an Architect and where I am today is so different, Atkins has been the catalyst to build myself, support me on my journey and pushed me to explore by creating my own path.”

What are you excited about in the digital field and what do you think is coming up next?

“Today in the digital world we can say it is all about the power of data. We are like the nerve centre of all the innovative initiatives taking place across the globe. Things are constantly changing in terms of the digital aspect and we are constantly tapping into new opportunities as well but if we look into our core business, there is a huge amount of work we are doing around creating new service models, and lines which can boom into new businesses tomorrow. 

We have a variety of offerings currently which include 4d, 5d, BIM, and Digital BIM which we offer to our contractor clients, and there are so many new things coming up and happening, but the most important would be upon our usage of data and analysing it. We have been in business for 80 years and delivering the best.”

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