Ramesh Kalanje, Vice-President, Center of Excellence, Commvault

Ramesh Kalanje spearheads the centre of excellence (CoE) for Commvault, a US-based global data protection and data management software company. This is the company’s first CoE in India, and it is intended to help build a “microcosm” of the global business in the country in order to drive product development, research and innovation to meet the emerging needs of enterprise customers worldwide.

“We planned to launch the CoE early last year, but the pandemic pushed out the date. However, despite the different working and on-boarding approaches that were forced upon us, we successfully managed to recruit more than 50 per cent of our talented and diverse CoE team in the past nine months. The experience has been truly unprecedented. From virtual hiring and remote town halls to creating immersive employee experiences every day in the past one year, I have found myself in a unique situation, innovating solutions I have never implemented before,” he says.

According to Kalanje, digital adoption and cloud migration stole the show during 2020, opening up avenues for emerging technologies such as intelligent data management in order to be at the forefront of the accelerated transformational journey. He believes that in the new data-driven world, business leaders at the helm of the new normal will need to take a compassionate leadership route. “The future can only be navigated successfully by leveraging an in-house data lake through optimised data management solutions, empowering the workforce and customers with a robust end-point protection framework, augmenting the use of cloud-native applications across environments and unleashing the potential of 5G,” he adds.

In terms of management style, Kalanje follows the mantra of “empower and enrich”, and believes in fostering an environment where every team member feels empowered to thrive and reach their full potential.

Kalanje completed a bachelor’s in engineering from Bengaluru and later moved to Texas, USA, for his master’s, where he did research on AI and machine learning, and developed software for law enforcement agencies in Texas, funded by the federal government. After spending many years in the US, he recently returned to India. He currently lives in Bengaluru with his wife, his son and his parents. In his free time, he enjoys playing golf. “I have enjoyed golfing for the past 20 years, and it has helped me pass my time during the pandemic as well. To ensure I always have someone to play with, I have taught my nine-year-old the sport as well,” he says.