Atibha Behl, System Designer
My parents’ dream was for me to become a doctor. They saw the effects that poor healthcare and a lack of doctors had on the nation. I, however, wanted to be an engineer. Today, I am a systems designer at Philips. Philips has allowed me to fulfil my parents’ dream of creating a healthier society while fulfilling my dream of being an engineer – a win-win situation.
As a systems designer, I’m responsible for product design and quality. I interact with various cross-functional teams such as Marketing, Clinical Application, Service, Operations, Quality and Regulatory from India, China and Hamburg. I absorb product requirements and translate them into technical terms. I help define the architecture of our systems and design products that meet the needs of all cross-functional teams. My work takes me in surprising directions, including the fascinating new areas of augmented reality (AR) and artificial intelligence (AI).
Delivering medical innovation
I joined Philips after completing biomedical engineering from IIT Bombay. My studies saw me working on painless and controlled drug delivery using microneedles, developing sensors for cancer detection, and developing devices for glucose detection using nanoparticles amongst others. I felt, however, that there was a gap between research and industry; that the breakthroughs made at academic institutions did not always reach the people.
This helped me understand what my career purpose was to be: to create a positive impact on society through medical innovations. Philips was the perfect place to achieve this, so I joined after graduation.
I joined Philips’ Healthcare Innovation Centre in 2012. Back then, it was like a big startup. There was a real entrepreneurial spirit, with enormous growth opportunities. It has been great to be part of the business as it developed and matured. I really like the co-location of multiple businesses; end-to-end product development exposure; experience with both value and premium customers, and the co-location of manufacturing sites.
Taking healthcare to the next level
Installing the ECO-Diagnost, a fixed X-ray system, in a hospital, was enormously satisfying. The client had been using an analog system but switched to digital X-ray with our product. He was worried about training the technicians on such a complex system. But after using it, he could see that it was very intuitive and, hence, very easy for users to operate. What’s more, all the safety measures in place mean the chances of a technician making a mistake is negligible.
Since the radiographer was used to seeing the X-ray on film, he was concerned he would not get the same image quality on digital systems. However, after seeing he had the option of adapting the image quality to his preferences with simple steps, he was very happy.
At Philips, I’ve had the chance to innovate and create solutions for the medical industry and take healthcare to the next level.
Motivated to make a difference
Work-life balance is brilliant at Philips. Flexible timings and a great team mean I get enough time to pursue my hobbies and take up additional courses for my career development. I don’t have to worry about the work after office hours. This balance keeps my lifestyle active and I don’t feel I have that “boring corporate life with sedentary lifestyle”. This amazing feeling boosts my confidence and motivates me to work or develop more - so I can spend more time helping to create a healthier society.
Originally posted here.
Philips is a world leading health technology company with a vision to make life better for people worldwide through meaningful innovation. Making good on this promise depends on our inclusive, passionate, inspirational, collaborative and diverse team.