Photo caption: Kavyakala. M (Kavya), is an Emulation Engineer in Reference SoC team in IMSG (IO technologies Memory and System IP Group), India where she is responsible for Mem Bridge and MC IP emulation .
Four years ago, Kavya reassessed her life priorities, which had shifted drastically. She realized that she was compromising the wonderful, formative years of her son’s childhood due to being too busy at work.
“When you have a five-year-old child telling you they miss you at home, you drop everything to be with them. At least, that was what I did,” she said. Even though she never regretted her decision to become a full-time mother, Kavya soon found herself missing the rigour and problem-solving aspects of technical work. Thanks to a strong support system of ex-colleagues, friends and managers at Intel, and seeing her son becoming a little more independent, she concluded that it was time to reclaim her career.
However, she had some concerns about returning to the workforce.
“Am I still competent enough to take up technical work?”
“Will the people at Intel still want to hire me?”
After her long career hiatus, these were the two biggest questions floating in Kavya’s mind as she applied. The thought of having to get accustomed to new tools in the workplace felt daunting. On top of that, there was a daily commute of more than three hours. These reasons combined kept her on the edge of her seat.
Then, a global pandemic hit. Kavya’s first day back at Intel coincided with the first nationwide COVID-19 lockdown in India. However, despite having to adapt to an unprecedented remote working arrangement, she realized that all her worries were uncalled for. Intel’s Home to Office program made sure that all bases were covered for returning women employees.
The Home to Office program is designed to help women professionals transition seamlessly from a hiatus back to a successful career. This program provides flexible work arrangements, transition support, upskilling and training courses — among other well-rounded support systems — to build an environment of inclusivity in the workplace that gives returning women professionals everything they need to flourish and grow.
The option to work from home gave her the time she needed to learn, read and fully delve into the new job scope she had been tasked with. Intel-wide changes to the work model also enabled her to be more productive. With its focus on health and personal wellness, Intel swiftly facilitated Kavya’s seamless transition from working at home to the office.
A Positive Workplace Culture
“I am fully enjoying my current role for the opportunities to learn and grow alongside the team. Tracking an upward learning curve, working with helpful and highly-capable colleagues and having encouraging managers — everything has exceeded my expectations.”
The team Kavya is currently working with allocates a lot of time and space to constructive brainstorming sessions and open-minded discussions. New thoughts and ideas take center stage in their meetings, helping her sharpen her knowledge and thought processes.
As a woman in the technical field, Kavya feels Intel has succeeded in fostering a safe work environment.
“I am truly grateful for a workplace that prides itself on its commitment to diversity and inclusion. In all my time at Intel,” Kavya enthuses, “I’ve never encountered any gender-based discrimination as my male colleagues are well-mannered and respectful, even outside of the Intel campus. This is why Intel will always be my employer of choice!”
Reflections on Returning to Intel
As a mother caring for her child, Kavya’s definitions of responsibility, multitasking, and grit have taken on a whole new meaning. Back on the work track, she brings fresh perspectives to her professional duties. Intel’s Home to Office program recognizes the value-adding traits that women returning after a work hiatus can offer, in turn helping them to advance their careers.
“I appreciate the flexible working hours and work from home facilities,” Kavya explains, “as they make it easier for women employees returning to the workforce to strike a balance between professional and personal obligations.”
Advice for Women Considering Re-entering the Workforce
“First of all, be 100% sure of your decision to resume work. This will empower you to face any challenge that comes your way, and there will be challenges. Secondly, don’t give up. You can’t stop people from passing negative comments. Don’t get discouraged by them and give your best in all that you do. Finally, always focus on upskilling. The day that you stop learning is the day you begin the slippery slope to becoming redundant.”
Learn more about Intel’s Home to Office program here.
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