Tue, 30 March, 2021
Ayyala Venkateswara Rao (known to everyone simply as Venkat) has been with TWI India for the past decade and is currently the Regional Manager for India. An unassuming, softly spoken person, Venkat has received accolades from his colleagues for how he has steered TWI’s Indian operations, especially during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Born in in a small town in Andhra Pradesh, Venkat’s childhood years were spent in a village surrounded by forest, since his father was a forest officer. It wasn’t until he began his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering that Venkat moved and experienced city life. Although he still fondly remembers his childhood days and speaks about them to his children.
Venkat joined Oil Country Tubular Ltd straight after his graduation, before moving on to work at Nagarjuna Fertilisers. Both of his roles at these companies were in India, where Venkat’s experience focused on inspection and welding related activities, which sowed the seeds of his interest in welding inspection. Having gained sufficient experience, he decided to venture out of India and took up an assignment first in Qatar then in Dubai followed by Saudi Arabia. He worked at leading companies such as Qatar Electricity and Water, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, Saudi Aramco. While working in these roles over the course of 12 years, Venkat gained expertise and a passion for both offshore and onshore equipment inspection.
It was in Qatar where a casual chat with a TWI person prompted Venkat to take up the CSWIP certification and became a certified welding inspector. Following this, he maintained regular interaction with TWI, although he admits he never thought that he would get the opportunity to actually work for TWI. Venkat’s training has also seen him gain NACE Protective coating inspector and API inspector for Piping and Storage Tanks certifications alongside his CSWIP welding inspector certification.
In 2011, Venkat was given the chance to join TWI India by his colleague Jim Kerins. TWI India) was just being created at the time to cater to the Indian market, and Venkat explained, “it was a blessing and I had no second thought and jumped on to the van and, from that day, there was no looking back and, over the past decade, I have witnessed the company growing by leaps and bounds to firmly establish their presence in India.”
Aside from offering the regular CSWIP courses, TWI India, under an initiative led by Venkat and his colleagues, has successfully completed the development of a plant inspector course and eLearning mode as well as developing marketing tools like promotional videos.
Skill development is an area of immense interest in India, with the Government encouraging skill development initiatives. Taking a cue from this, TWI India embarked on a massive campaign offering programmes including CSWIP Visual Welding Inspector, IOSH, and NDT. So far, nearly 1900 candidates have been trained through these efforts in just 24 months.
Contributing to society has always been important to Venkat, who takes every opportunity to serve society. Every year the money from the corporate social responsibility account was spent usefully, such as through gifting a bus to a charity school and gifting a van for NDT mobile training activities. While society receives due attention, the TWI India employees are not left far behind. Celebrating the birthday of each employee, celebrating important festivals, attending to employee grievances are among the activities designed to boost the employee morale and Venkat actively engaged himself in all of them to keep the team spirit high.
Today, Venkat has over 30 years of experience in welding, NDT, painting and plant Inspection. Under his stewardship, TWI India has not only grown in terms of revenue and profits but has also earned a name as a reliable, quality and useful pan-Indian training and certification centre. Today leading industries are looking forward to get trained through TWI India programmes, and all this has happened in just10 years. So, what is the success mantra for Venkat? He says, “do your work diligently, empower and involve your team, avoid procrastination, and learn from each day.”
Venkat’s vision for the future of TWI India includes offering engineering services, making effective use of AI/VR/ML and bringing more effectiveness to training.
Venkat, a simple home loving man, is a proud father of twins (a boy and a girl), who lives with his wife and children in Chennai, likes to spend quality time with his family and also enjoys trips with them to various destinations in India and abroad.