Brian Warwick, technical and product development manager at Applied Component Technology (ACT) has been named The Manufacturer’s employee of the month May 2015.
What is your role and what are your main responsibilities?
My main role is to oversee all aspects of the design and development of new products at ACT. This is a very exciting position and gives me the chance to explore new opportunities for the company, especially with our capabilities in delivering lightweight solutions.
I also like it because I get to be fully involved with the concept, the prototypes and then the challenge of getting them in a position to enter volume production.
What are the key technical skills you use?
A good knowledge of materials and manufacturing processes are essential and skills I use every day. I also like to think I have a logical approach to problem solving and getting the best out of the team I am responsible for.
What personal characteristics help you in your role?
An analytical and methodical approach to things, which gives me the platform to quickly conceive a number of potential solutions that I can refine into a more controlled result.
What do you consider to be your biggest personal success at the company so far?
The galley cart project has certainly been the most challenging and required all of my experience and knowledge to make it work. To see it progress into a product that can be manufactured competitively has been an incredible journey for me.
What are the most rewarding parts of your job?
There are a number of aspects I enjoy, but the most rewarding aspect is seeing people use products I’ve been involved within their daily lives. The key part of the galley cart project was finding a materials solution that met the often conflicting requirements for sustainability and a reduction in weight, yet still offers higher strength properties.
Working with the team at ACT and our suppliers we achieved a panel design, which has just passed a stringent 50kg 9G aerospace structural test with flying colours. This type of challenge, going from concept to reality and overcoming key challenges under extreme time pressure, makes my job extremely demanding but ultimately rewarding.
I now look forward to seeing the galley cart in use on my next flight! As a typical engineer, I’m already looking at derivatives of our exciting new composite panel and how it can be used in the automotive sector. No doubt further challenges lie ahead!
Do you have a grand career ambition?
ACT is now poised for considerable growth on the back of the galley cart project and some exciting new automotive interior projects. My medium-term ambition is to develop my team as the company expands.