Linda Higgins, Manufacturing Engineer, Johnson & Johnson Vision Care Ireland

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What does your job involve?

Johnson & Johnson Vision Care is a 24/7 manufacturing plant , so every morning we get an update from operations on how the manufacturing line is performing. So our role would be to support operations in terms of addressing any problems. Alongside that we run projects to improve safety and to increase the quality and reliability of our products and to optimise how our machines operate.

How did you get your job?

I studied Product Design & Technology for four years in the University of Limerick and during that time I did an eight month placement in DePuy Orthopaedics in Cork, also a Johnson & Johnson Company, and I really enjoyed working with them. When I graduated I was looking for a similar role so thankfully I was offered a position in Limerick where I lived with Johnson & Johnson, so I did the graduate programme and was then offered a full-time Manufacturing Engineer role.

What skills do you need to be successful

The skills that I think are vital are communication and teamwork. Communication simply because whether you're working verbaally with your team, sending an email or compiling a presentation, you need to be able to communicate clearly. Teamwork is very important as day-to-day I'm dealing with other engineers and different department s and it's some important to work together as a team so we can maximise everyone's skills, so we can arrive at the best solutions.

What is your top career tip

Ask as many questions as possible, there is no such thing as a stupid question. At the start you can be overwhelmed, dealing with experienced professionals and new technology and there can be a fear that you ask the wrong question. That's not the case. In Johnson & Johnson you have a 'buddy', whose job it is, for a year, to answer any questions you have, and the help you settle in to the company's environment.

What made you choose and engineering career path

Originally I never planned to go into engineering as I was always more designed focused, but once I saw what the role was in Johnson & Johnson I saw that I would be helping people by problem solving and being innovative.

What is your career motivation

Having worked in both DePuy Orthopaedics and Johnson & Johnson, the importance of the customer has become key to me in terms of my work and is at the core of everything we do. Any project we improve improves the experience for the customer so I always feel very motivated and there is a huge sense of achievement when I do complete a project.

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