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Getting to Know BeyondID’s Women in Technology

In honor of International Women’s Day, we interviewed several members of BeyondID’s own Women in Technology chapter to recognize their contributions, celebrate their achievements, and get to know them better. We also had the opportunity to hear their perspectives on progress in gender equality, the challenges women face in the workplace, and optimism for the future. Read on to hear what they had to say.

Sapana Koju

Developer Sapana Koju talked about her passions and interests outside of work, her daily routine, and key factors for success in her role at BeyondID. Sapana’s growth mindset and effective communication skills are two traits she attributes to her success. Sapana’s dedication to her career and personal growth serves as an inspiration to all women striving to make a difference in their respective fields. 

“Resilience and patience are two of a woman’s greatest strengths, whether in the workplace or in everyday life.”

Sapana Koju, Software Developer, BeyondID

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What does IWD mean to you?  

I view International Women’s Day as a time to celebrate women’s power and honor their accomplishments. It is a reminder that gender equality is a fundamental human right and that there is still much work to be done to achieve it. It involves actively confronting preconceptions along with bias in day-to-day activity. It is a day to inspire and encourage women to continue fighting for their rights and to promote a more inclusive and fairer world for everyone.  

How does it feel to be recognized for IWD?  

I was happy and pleased to be acknowledged for International Women’s Day and to annotate the opinions of all the women in my peripheral surroundings.   

What are the challenges women still face in the workplace?   

Women still confront a variety of obstacles despite major advancements made in workplace gender equality. The wage gap, mansplaining, not getting credit for the work that you do, being undermined by your male counterparts, lack of work-life balance, etc. are some things that are still prevalent in society. This needs to be changed according to the generation.  

What are you optimistic about regarding women in the workplace?   

Resilience and patience are two of a woman’s greatest strengths, whether in the workplace or in everyday life. Women bring different perspectives to the team, and the team will have a diverse set of opinions. The more diverse the viewpoints, the more creative the ideas. Women have higher social awareness, which promotes more effective and productive teamwork and a cooperative environment in team-building activities or any other discussion.  

3 words that describe you:  

Fun-loving, energetic, and honest.

Outside of work? Passions, hobbies, interests?  

Listening to music, dancing, and watching series. 

Traveling or Hiking.  

Ice skating- I just started learning ice skating.   

I love to visit different restaurants and try out different food even though I am a fussy eater. 

Morning or evening routine?  

Morning – not a morning person. Breakfast and get ready for work.  

Evening – On weekdays, I just work out, use social media to entertain myself, and start my evening office shift. At weekends I try to spend time with family and friends or hang out at different restaurants and places.     

Favorite way to spend a day off.  

Spending time with my family and friends.

Just Relaxing with soothing music with tasty food.  

Trying out different restaurants.

Things I do to de-stress.  

When I am stressed, I usually relax by listening to music and eating my favorite food. Working out and simply talking with my friends and family helps me de-stress.  

Briefly Describe Your career prior to BID.  

My first job after graduation was with Cloudtai, a Nepal-based information technology company. As a .NET Developer, I worked on a web-based clinical laboratory product. I learned how to work as part of a team and how to use various technologies. I only spent three years there, but I made some good friends and improved my skillsets.  

What does a typical day look like for you at BID?   

As a developer, I begin each day by checking emails and Slack messages to stay on track regarding the current project progress and communicate with my team members. I attend team stand-up meetings, and I spend most of my day writing code, fixing bugs, and testing. I also spend some time learning about recent technologies and improving my current skillset. A typical day for a developer consists of writing code, collaborating with team members, and ensuring that the application meets quality standards and progresses toward project goals.   

What is the key to achieving success in your role?  

As I work in the IT industry, I believe that having strong technical skills in programming languages, frameworks, and tools that are relevant to my job is the key factor for success. It is critical to stay updated about the latest technologies and best practices. As a developer, analyzing problems and finding solutions, as well as time management to meet deadlines, are essential for success.  

What behavior or personality trait do you most attribute to your success and why?   

A growth mindset and effective communication skills are two personality traits that I attribute to my success as a developer. Because the technology landscape is constantly changing, and new tools and programming languages emerge on a regular basis, this mindset is critical for developers. When faced with difficult problems, developers with a growth mindset approach them as opportunities to learn and improve rather than feeling defeated or giving up. Effective communication skills are also essential for developer success. Developers must collaborate closely with team members such as designers, project managers, and other developers. It is critical to be able to communicate clearly and collaborate effectively to produce software that meets project requirements and is delivered on time.  

Sruthi Manga

People Operations Manager extraordinaire Sruthi Manga shared her passion for employee engagement and workplace culture. She offered her personal insights on the importance of gender equality in the workplace and outlined the steps we can take to achieve it. Sruthi also discussed her favorite aspects of her role at BeyondID, the qualities she looks for in a boss, and her proudest career moment. 

“While we celebrate the progress achieved toward gender equality, we must equally acknowledge the challenges that remain. Women continue to confront challenges that prevent them from having equal access to the same opportunities and privileges as men. International Women’s Day serves as a reminder of the continuous battle for women’s empowerment, as well as the importance of continual activity and campaigning.”

Sruthi Manga, People Operations Manager, BeyondID

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What does IWD mean to you? 

To me, International Women’s Day is a moment to celebrate women’s achievements while also emphasizing the significance of continuing to fight for gender equality. It’s a day to celebrate and appreciate the incredible achievements of women from all areas of life. IWD is a global celebration of women’s accomplishments as well as a demand for gender equality. 

While we celebrate the progress achieved toward gender equality, we must equally acknowledge the challenges that remain. Women continue to confront challenges that prevent them from having equal access to the same opportunities and privileges as men. IWD serves as a reminder of the continuous battle for women’s empowerment, as well as the importance of continual activity and campaigning. 

Overall, International Women’s Day is a day to recognize women’s accomplishments, raise awareness of the issues that women continue to confront, and urge action to achieve gender equality. It’s time to acknowledge the continuous battle for women’s empowerment, as well as the importance of continual activity and campaigning. Let us celebrate our achievements while also acknowledging that there is still work to be done toward a future in which all women may live with dignity and have equal access to the same rights and opportunities as men. 

How does it feel to be recognized for IWD? 

International Women’s Day (IWD) is a momentous occasion celebrated across the globe and being recognized for IWD can have a profound impact on the women in your organization. 

Recognizing and acknowledging the contributions of women can be empowering and validating. It can serve as a reminder to women that their hard work and dedication are valued and appreciated by their organization. This recognition can foster a sense of belonging and motivate employees to continue making positive contributions to the workplace. 

What are the challenges women still face in the workplace? 

Women continue to face several challenges in the workplace, despite advances in workplace equality over the past decades. Women are often still underrepresented in higher-level positions and in many industries, and the gender wage gap persists. 

  • Despite significant progress toward gender equality in the workplace, women continue to face challenges that threaten their professional growth and success.  

  • Gender bias and discrimination are two of the most serious challenges that women face in the workplace, which may stifle their growth and success. This may also contribute to the continuing income disparity between men and women across industries and levels of employment. 

  • Women experience insufficient representation in leadership roles. 

  • Women may encounter sexual harassment or work in unfriendly circumstances, both of which can have a severe influence on their health and productivity. 

Finally, work-life balance is another issue that many women encounter, especially when they are the primary caregivers for children or elderly family members. This can make balancing work and personal duties challenging, perhaps impeding their ability to develop in their jobs. 

What are you optimistic about regarding women in the workplace? 

Quite apart from the difficulties women face at work, there are many reasons to be optimistic about the future of women in the workforce. The rising number of women in executive roles is one of the most encouraging trends. Women now have more opportunities to grow in their careers because of technological developments and flexible work schedules. Women can now handle work and household responsibilities more easily because of flexible work schedules and other remote work options, providing them greater professional freedom and control. 

Further growing in acceptance and popularity is gender equality in the workplace. Several companies have policies and initiatives in place to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion, which makes the workplace more welcoming and inclusive of women. 

In addition, more women are starting their own businesses, which gives them greater freedom and influence over their careers. This growth is particularly exciting since it demonstrates the persistence and enthusiasm of female entrepreneurs. 

 

What’s your favorite way to spend a day off? 

My preferred way to spend a day off is by bonding with my daughter. 

Would you say you’re more of an extrovert or an introvert? 

I prefer to think of myself as an Omnivert. 

If you could only eat one dish for the rest of your life, what would it be? 

I believe my mother cooks the best Hyderabadi Biryani (Indian cuisine), which I can eat for the rest of my life. 

What do you enjoy most about your role? 

  • The most enjoyable aspect of my job is interacting with employees and addressing their questions/issues. 

  • Being both an employee and a corporate champion. 


What qualities do you look for in a boss? 

  1. Recognition of hard work: An employee seeks a manager who values their hard work and dedication towards their job, even if it is unrecognized by others. 

  1. Clear communication: A manager who can communicate clearly and effectively is highly desirable. This helps the employee understand the expectations and goals of the organization and align their efforts towards them. 

  1. Supportive and approachable: A manager who is approachable and supportive helps the employee feel valued and respected in the role. This creates a positive work environment where the employee can thrive and grow. 

  1. Fairness and impartiality: The employee values a manager who is fair and impartial in their decision-making. This ensures that everyone is treated equally, without any bias or favoritism. 

  1. Encouragement of professional growth: A manager who encourages professional growth and provides opportunities for learning and development is highly desirable. This helps the employee expand their skill set and contribute more effectively to the organization. 

Overall, a manager who is supportive, fair, communicative, and encourages growth and development is desirable. These qualities create a positive work environment and help employees succeed in their roles. 

What’s the career highlight you’re most proud of? 

I am most proud of being chosen for the inaugural President’s Club at BeyondID. 

Professionally speaking, what’s something you’re excited about right now? 

I am excited about the prospect of becoming a Director of People Operations.

Arshia Manoj

Senior HR Business Partner Arshia Manoj gave her perspective on challenges and opportunities for women in the workplace. There is a great need for women to inspire others like them, Arshia explained. She shared her perspective on women’s drive to work and be financially independent, the importance of work-life balance, and the challenges women face in the workplace — such as employment discrimination and gender stereotypes. She also talked about her love for sweets and Dosa, her attachment to her childhood home, and her enjoyment of connecting with people in her role. 

“…in a country like India where we have a handful of women working, inspiration is what we need to be to the other ladies. Drive them – get them to work, and most of all, get them to continue working.”

Arshia Manoj, Senior HR Business Partner, BeyondID

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What does IWD mean to you? 

International Women’s Day – is a day that was introduced to recognize the efforts put in by women, it is also a way to remind women across all age groups, across verticals,  how special they are. And to educate them of their rights and to keep workings harder and striving for betterment.  

How does it feel to be recognized for IWD? 

I am feeling very excited, it has taken me a bit to absorb and digest this. On a serious note, I am humbled, honored to be representing BeyondID – India team. I am glad that I have been nominated and recognized for the collective efforts being put in by the women workforce, across my team, my company, my country.  

What are the challenges women still face in the workplace? 

Though we are evolving everyday, there is improvement everyday, sometimes, somethings take some more time to change. Work-life balance is one major issue that women still face at workplace, managing life between personal and professional space. Some other issues – are employment based on being married or planning to start a family, salary bias, and gender stereotypes, harassment are a few I can think of. 

What are you optimistic about regarding women in the workplace? 

I think, in a country like India where we have a handful of women working, Inspiration is what we need to be to the other ladies, drive them – get them to work, and most of all, get them to continue working. 

An opportunity to be self dependent/self reliant and financially secure – to be living life on your own terms to a large extent. 

Women can be a driving force to maintain a balance in the workplace ecosystem and have a healthy competition at work. 

What three words would your friends use to describe you? 

Lively, hard-working, carefree & bold – can I add more?  

Do you still live near where you grew up? Why or why not? 

Yes, I still stay in the same house I grew up in as a child (my mother’s house) – I am madly in love with this place, my neighbourhood, and so attached to it that I would never want to leave this place.  It was probably one of the conditions on my list while I was marrying my boyfriend, unlike the usual scenario – he moved into my place after the wedding. We are trying to break stereotypes and I am glad to be surrounded by such like-minded people.  


If you could only eat one dish for the rest of your life, what would it be? 

Is dessert considered? I have a terrible sweet-tooth, I am not sure if I should be blaming the Bengali genes or the Malayali genes for it – I can gorge on sweets/pastries/donuts/brownies/pies, etc. I am not all that fond of ice creams though – but I wouldn’t mind it once in a while.  Apart from sweets, I loveeee Dosa, I can have it 365 days 24/7 – and never get tired of it – it is my favorite food. Apart from this – junk food is my go-to food for any mood, any day… I know it is not a healthy option, I am trying to watch out for what I eat. 

What do you enjoy most about your role? 

Connecting with people, I have always believed that I am people’s person. I thrive on their vibe, it is very important for me to have a good working relationship with people I work with. I am always almost correct in gauging a person from my first meeting, which has always helped me bond with people better. 

What topic could you give an hour-long presentation on with little to no preparation? 

To be yourself – since, that is what I do, this is something that comes naturally to me. I can pick up so many instances from my life to show how essential it is to be oneself at all times – that doesn’t mean – we act carelessly.  

What’s different about BID’s culture versus other companies you’ve worked at? 

On retrospection, I have worked in a few companies, but I think the best by far, would be BID (P.S. this is not to gain any brownie points) I can list down some points: 

  1. The people connect is very strong at BID, everyone seems to be putting in that effort to make a new joiner feel so welcomed.  

  2. There is a sense of belongingness, a sense of being heard, a sense of feeling valued and your thoughts being considered. 

  3. The work culture – the flexibility, ownership of tasks – being encouraged by reporting manager and members of the LT and finally building a relationship of trust irrespective of the time zones/geographies.  

  4. There is no glass ceiling at the workplace, in terms of interaction with anyone, in terms of growth. 

  5. People first culture, I have always believed in this, and I am glad that BID is a company that not only believes but also drives this.

Rebeca Saborio

Rebeca Saborio, a Senior Project Manager, discussed with us the challenges that women still face in the workplace, such as the expectation to take care of their homes and children while having a career. She also discussed the struggle for equal pay in many industries, and acknowledged the sacrifices that many women have made to give women today the freedom to work, vote, own property, and pursue a career. 

“Change takes time and continued effort, the conditions that we have now are the result of tireless efforts of men and women fighting for what is right, the movement continues and gets stronger, so I see hope for a better future for generations to come.”

Rebeca Saborio, Senior Project Manager, BeyondID

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What does IWD mean to you?  

International Women’s Day is of utmost importance to me, this day is a reminder of all the brave individuals that have dedicated their lives to fighting for women’s rights and gender equality, millions have died so that I can enjoy the freedom that I have today to work, vote, own property, choose a career and many other things that we might take for granted. 

IWD is a reminder of the fight against centuries of restrictive ideas about gender that are not true or fair, that human beings are way too complex to be stereotyped. 

On this IWD, let us commemorate this sisterhood! Support and encourage each other to not be afraid of highlighting and celebrating each other’s success. 

How does it feel to be recognized for IWD? 

Humble, I am so lucky to be surrounded by so many strong female figures, in my personal life and in the workplace, being recognized for this day it’s amazing, it means I have been able to learn from all these wonderful women. 

I just hope that people can look at me as someone that is always willing to help, rejects discriminatory behavior and celebrates the accomplishments of others. 

What are the challenges women still face in the workplace? 

I have been blessed to work for many great companies in the IT industry, where differences are embraced and celebrated, however, there are still many challenges, for example, women are still expected to take care of their homes and children while having a career, also equal pay in many industries will take decades to achieve. 

Unfortunately, there are also many women that experience violence, have no access to healthcare or education, until we can improve this for each one of us, the fight must continue. 

What are you optimistic about regarding women in the workplace? 

Change takes time and continued effort, the conditions that we have now are the result of tireless efforts of men and women fighting for what is right, the movement continues and gets stronger, so I see hope for a better future for generations to come. 

Outside of work? Passions, hobbies, interests?  

I really enjoy cooking and gardening. I’m pretty good at it also. 

What’s your favorite way to spend a day off?  

At the beach with my husband and my dogs, and a cold beer.

What’s your game plan in a zombie apocalypse?  

I would not want to live in a post-apocalyptic world so maybe I would just get eaten. 

If you could only eat one dish for the rest of your life, what would it be?  

Tacos, I love Mexican food. 

What was your first job?  

I was a hostess at a restaurant, and I loved it. 

What behavior or personality trait do you most attribute to your success and why?  

My ability to adapt to change and my willingness to help others. 

Do you believe in having a “5-year plan”? 

A lot of people will probably disagree with me but no, I don’t believe and having a 5-year plan, I believe in continuously improving myself and the rest just works itself out, at least that is how it has worked for me.

Sapana, Sruthi, Arshia, and Rebeca serve as role models for all women striving to make a difference in their respective fields. They demonstrate the importance of a growth mindset, effective communication skills, adaptability, and a willingness to help others. As we celebrate International Women’s Day, we should all take inspiration from these women and strive to create a more inclusive and diverse workplace where all individuals, regardless of gender, can thrive. 

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Erin Moore
Erin Moore

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