An international symposium on ‘Workplace Transformation: A People’s Perspective’ was held at Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences & Research (AIMS) campus, Kochi, on December 8, 2017. The event was the part of 7th edition of ASTHRA, the annual management festival of Department of Management, Kochi campus, which was sponsored by Barakat Quality Plus and co-sponsored by Eram Scientific Solutions Private Limited. Experts drawn from national and international industry and academia participated in the event.
The event was inaugurated by Sampoojya Swami Purnamritananda Puri, General Secretary of Mata Amritanandamayi Math. The felicitation address was given by Dr. Prem Kumar Nair, Medical Director, Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences & Research (AIMS) campus, Kochi. Mr. Sreenath Padmanabhan, President of 7th Edition of ASTHRA, introduced the theme of the event. Prof. Sunanda Muralidharan, Chairperson, Department of Management, Kochi, welcomed and introduced the panel of experts. The forenoon technical session started with the presentation by Mr. Prabhu Nambiappan, Senior Vice President-Human Resource, RAMCO Group, who spoke on ‘The Digitization Journey’. Mr. Vasudevan Rajagopalan, Head of Talent Acquisition [TCS-India], delivered a speech on ‘Workforce Innovation and Intrapreneurship’. He mentioned that creativity is the most needed talent by 2020 and that the present generation is indeed a ‘Do’ generation.
The afternoon technical session began with a scholastic presentation (on skype) by Dr. Vijay Pereira, Associate Dean of Research, University of Wollongong, Dubai, who gave an excellent academic perspective on the theme by highlighting contemporary issues in the workplace.
A new dimension on workplace transformation was highlighted by Dr. Nagendra V. Chowdary, Vice President & Head-Academics, Times Professional Learning, the Times Group in his speech on Workplace Design. He mentioned that ergonomics is an important factor for the current generation of employees.
Dr. Anupama, Clinical Professor, Amrita Advanced Centre for Robotic Surgery, discussed Robotics in the Healthcare Sector and mentioned that less nursing is needed in robotic surgery as the period of recovery is shorter than normal surgery. Mr. Vijaya Sunder, Head-Business Process, Excellence Office, The World Bank Group, Chennai, spoke on the topics, ‘Workplace Agility’ and “Learning and Unlearning is the Critical Point”. The proceedings of the technical sessions were aptly summarized by Dr. Rajiv Prasad, Associate Professor, Amrita School of Business, Coimbatore, in his rapporteur report.
In the closing ceremony, Dr. (Col) Vishal Marwaha, Principal, Amrita School of Medicine, Kochi, gave the valedictory address. This was followed by prize distribution for the winners of the Business Plan Contest, named, ’Chakravyuh’. Mr. T. K. Kiran, Vice President, Asthra- 7th Edition, proposed the vote of thanks to all the participants.
The event was attended by about 400 students and faculty members from management educational institutions in and around Kochi. The event stands out as unique in terms of discussing and deliberating on the most contemporary themes of the dynamic transformation happening in the workplace the world over. The deliberations unanimously bring forth that the concept of ‘Workplace Transformation’ is no longer a notion, but a reality, which throws open immense opportunities, benefits and win-win situations to all concerned with business, economy, people and society. However, the eventual success of the process of workplace transformation, that has already begun in the global economy, depends on how the existing and the gen-next workforce try to adapt themselves in terms of acquiring new skill sets, technological and digital capabilities, as well as the emotional intelligence and the right attitude to take advantage of the immense opportunities created.