Imagine Next: Get Smart
“New” is often synonymous with “good.” It’s why the people in charge of such things are so quick to put that “All New!” label on everything from cereal boxes to car advertisements. And while we’re too savvy to always fall for such obvious ploys, there are cases in which new really is good. Here are a few examples: the prevalence of the internet of things (IoT); Nil Dutta, vice president of business development for Parsons X; and Imagine Next—all of which are propelling Parsons in exciting directions.
IoT technology has the power to accelerate the interpretation of collected data, enabling devices to work smarter, faster, and more efficiently for the end user and connecting people around the world.
Although IoT is new in the grand scheme of things, it’s been around long enough to become ingrained in most people’s daily lives. You might even be enjoying the benefits of IoT right this very moment. If you’re talking to your Alexa, checking your Fitbit, or running your Roomba as you read this—that’s IoT technology working for you. In a nutshell, IoT makes “things” better by employing a bidirectional exchange of information to optimize the user’s experience through smart analysis and interactions. IoT technology has the power to accelerate the interpretation of collected data, enabling devices to work smarter, faster, and more efficiently for the end user and connecting people around the world.
Parsons X embodies that connectivity between thing and user.”
So what does Nil Dutta have to do with all this? Nil is a new Parsons employee (he’s been here for a few months now) responsible for leading the growth of a new solution set called Parsons X. Parsons X embodies that connectivity between thing and user. For example, we have sensor-based technology on smart corridors that enable us to listen to the highway and improve travel-time reliability, reducing accidents, congestion, and greenhouse gas emissions, based on the data that’s continuously collected (and protected using military-grade cybersecurity). According to Nil, “Parsons X is a digital accelerator within Parsons that fosters innovation and improves our customers’ experience. Our Parsons X technology solutions enable better decisions by not only harvesting data from physical assets we build for our clients, but turning that data into actionable, insightful information.”
With the digital twin, we’re pre-identifying points of failure and designing to prevent them as well as test the what-if scenarios. It’s a virtual preview of what the project looks like.
An example is our use of digital twins. We build infrastructure around the world, and not only do we create the physical asset, but we also build a digital version. If that asset happens to be a bridge we designed, for example, we can pull data such as wind load or the number of cars passing over the bridge to use in the digital version to give us a real-time assessment of how the bridge will behave under different circumstances, from regular use to earthquake conditions. With the digital twin, we’re pre-identifying points of failure and designing to prevent them as well as test the what-if scenarios. It’s a virtual preview of what the project looks like.
“All that experience comes together here at Parsons, where we offer a comprehensive digital transformation of critical assets, instead of just one- or two-point solutions. It enables us to innovate in ways that most companies aren’t able to and benchmark best practices for these innovations.”
This kind of work is what attracted Nil to Parsons: the cutting-edge predictive and interactive solutions that improve—and sometimes even save—lives. Once upon a time, Nil was a marine engineer operating super tankers in the high seas. After grad school, he spent a decade in 3D modeling and life-cycle management and then another decade in IoT. Nil explains, “I’ve been on the side of software vendors of the two major technologies, selling virtual reality and IoT products for the last 22 years. All that experience comes together here at Parsons, where we offer a comprehensive digital transformation of critical assets, instead of just one- or two-point solutions. It enables us to innovate in ways that most companies aren’t able to and benchmark best practices for these innovations.”
Nil was also drawn to Parsons because, unlike the other firms he considered, we offered a unique culture that empowers people to collaborate regularly with the best of the best in their fields, who throw themselves into challenges to determine the optimal outcome for the customer. “With Parsons X, we have an unparalleled brain trust of highly educated and experienced personnel. The digital vernacular comes together with the subject matter expertise, enabling the concrete and the rebar that we lay to actually talk to its owners,” Nil says.
What’s more, Nil says that Parsons understands better than any software vendor or consulting company the reality of the physical world we live in, because we’re the ones actually designing and building physical assets. Because we know it so well, we’re able to take the physical world to the next level by digitizing it. “By changing the way we design and build, we’re offering our customers real innovation. For example, we’ve been doing critical infrastructure since the 1940s, improving processes all along. Now we’re on our way to ensuring that existing and future infrastructure can speak, can tell us what it needs in real time,” Nil explains.
Parsons X is Nil’s, and his colleagues’, opportunity to make the world a safer, smarter place to live. All those IoT devices like your Alexa and Fitbit and Roomba are fun, personalized, and make your day a little simpler. But what most excites Nil are the transformational technologies that keep the people you love safe and that provide more sustainable, agile, and efficient solutions that make a meaningful difference in the way we live.
In the end, you could say the real reason Nil chose Parsons is not because of anything “All New!” Instead, what drew him here are the qualities that our people have been demonstrating all along—the creativity to imagine next and the drive, expertise, and teamwork to bring it to life.