Employee Spotlight: Rutu Upadhyaya, Design Director and TV Mystery Aficionado!

Employee spotlight rutu

What’s your role at BrightInsight?

Design Director

Can you share a bit of background on yourself (where you grew up, where you went to school, etc.)?

I am extremely lucky to call three places home: Nigeria, India and America.

I have been a designer for 20 years now! As a child I watched my architect father do what he loved most- design! Drawing as a career? I had signed up to be a designer even before I could spell the word designer. Not surprisingly, I completed my Bachelor of Architecture from Sir JJ college of Architecture (Mumbai, India) and started my career as an architect designing universities, hospitals and movie studios (Filmcity, Mumbai) in India.

When the internet boom happened sometime in 2000, cyber cafes were popping up everywhere and everyone I knew was becoming a web designer. I used to help my friends using bubble diagrams, laying out information in the right logical order of how people would probably use it (what we call UX now!)

After 7 years of working as an architect, I took a leap of faith and followed my heart into the world of interaction design. I completed my Masters in interaction design from the Academy of Art University, San Francisco. I loved every moment there and in a school of 21 departments, I was nominated valedictorian. My passion for wanting to continuously learn came from some of the amazing teachers at AAU. I then went on to complete certified interaction design courses from Stanford and MIT CSAIL.

After a while, I took my second big decision to start my own design company, where I got to work on various SaaS projects like healthcare, education and enterprise. I knew healthcare design is where I wanted to be, so when I was introduced to BrightInsight by a very dear friend (Kaushal Mehta), I applied.

I am employee #58 and have a cool mug to prove that!

What is your favorite food?

Indian chaats (all of them) and pizza.

Where is your favorite place on earth?

My parents’ home and at any beach watching the waves come and go.

Which of BrightInsight’s Values most resonates with you and why?

Each and every one of these values resonates with me. Fun fact: BrightInsight values are not just a list that was created by one person or some external branding company, it was also not created by just the leadership team, everyone pitched in and talked about individual values and this list is a reflection of every person at BrightInsight.

Since I must pick from the seven:

Passionate about transforming care and patient outcomes

Great work ethics implies never cutting corners and working towards a common goal of creating products designed for utmost ease of use. While designing for our end users I always keep in mind the risks that even a seemingly small error may cause.

Real world impact – we aim to positively impact healthcare globally by executing every day on our mission of accelerating digital health innovation for our biopharma and medtech customers.

What is your favorite part about working at BrightInsight?

The team! You will not find a set of more amazing teammates and leadership team anywhere. I get to work on real world problems with a lot of freedom and encouragement. At BrightInsight, if you come up with an idea for anything from company processes and policies to ideas specific to your role, you are given the freedom to present and/or try it. You may come out a winner, or you may fail and either way you will only find support from those around you.

Case and point: One month into joining BrightInsight, I approached my manager (Ferry Tamtoro) and told him about ‘Issue trees’ – a system that could help the team breakdown process problems that we were facing. This was definitely not a part of my role (although I do love solving problems and puzzles.) Ferry read through the details I sent, discussed it and asked me if I would like to lead a workshop session introducing the concept/tool to the company during our upcoming BI week! In an instant, I was given the platform and opportunity to conduct a 4-hour company-wide workshop and build a team to continue working on issues trees as a side project.

What are your hobbies outside of work?

Painting and vegetable gardening are like meditation for me. Drawing zentangles, coloring, swimming (mostly splashing in the pool) with my daughter. Watching and re-watching mystery TV shows with my husband.

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