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Technical Jobs

R&D Yields Many Ancillary Societal Benefits!

Friday, October 31st, 2014

As many of you know, drones have been a centerpiece of our war on terror. They allow our military to strike terrorists in remote regions such as the borders between Afghanistan and Pakistan without risking countless troops or military assets.

Amazon & Google R&D LabRecently, drones have been repurposed for civilian use. The Research and Development (R&D) laboratories of innovative companies like Amazon.com and Google X (Google’s R&D labs) have been developing and testing drones for such purposes as delivering medicines and packages to remote global regions that would otherwise be cost prohibitive and dangerous. For example, medications needed for stranded and injured hikers on the top of Mount Everest.

Now State Farm Insurance, the nation’s largest home and auto insurer, is considering using drones to improve its ability to process claims in disaster-stricken areas. Their recent pitch to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to allow them to do so is,property and casualty insurers play a major role in funding the restoration of businesses and communities after major incidents and unmanned aircraft, such as drones, will only facilitate and streamline this process.”

This recent example of technology transfer from government labs to civilian use is consistent with our nation’s history. The government best delivers basic research because there is no profit motive for public companies to fund pure R&D. Furthermore, as evidenced by such applications of drones by State Farm and other companies, this basic R&D, often developed by DARPA, other government labs or public universities for military use, can eventually provide countless civilian benefits not originally envisioned by its R&D creators! These are the ancillary benefits of basic research. Another example is the microchip, which was born out of the need for increased processing power within very, very tight area constraints of our NASA space capsules. Now microprocessors are omnipresent!

Besides personal benefit as an engineering recruiter recruiting more engineering talent for my client’s technical positions, there are many other national benefits accrued from increased R&D. This is substantiated by past articles:

a) Exercise Our Nation’s Students Into More Engineering, Scientific and Technical Graduate Studies and Jobs

b) Engineering Innovation, The Real Way To Create More Jobs: Part 1 of 3

c) Engineering Innovation, The Real Way To Create More Jobs: Part 2 of 3

d) Engineering Innovation, The Real Way To Create More Jobs: Part 3 of 3

e) Going For The Gold: Creating New Companies And Jobs With Great Ideas! 

f) Norway’s Olympic Success: A Paradigm For R&D, Scientific And Technical Jobs Creation

all of which point to the need for a greater focus on R&D, engineering, scientific and technical endeavors.

However, in order for these R&D efforts to be successful, we also need to energize our STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) training. This can include, as I previously wrote Comedic Education Increases Future R&D adding comedy to make STEM subjects more fun and easier to learn.

Additionally, as I shared in the video http://youtu.be/kKJiTUykoRY?list=UU7PSVH_DnMAFhS1pu56S5_w with almost 74% of STEM graduates not being able to find jobs in STEM fields, the government needs to create and fund more major research projects with utilitarian benefit. As I shared in previous articles: a) Design Engineering Jobs Can Help You Reach the Stars and b) A New Space Race To Fuel Technical Jobs these can include novel projects to build taller buildings, better roads and stronger infrastructure.

In summary, historically, there have been many proven offshoots from government and military R&D programs. These range from the microprocessor to commercial drones. All can yield many, many long-term R&D benefits to our society! As a result, we need to ramp up our R&D efforts to ensure our future competitiveness.

What are your thoughts?

Do 4-Year Degrees Yield Higher Salaries?

Friday, July 18th, 2014

2-year associates degreeHistorically, a 4-year degree has been a lot more valuable than a 2-year associate’s degree. Therefore, for generations this has justified the time and expense because it guaranteed a middle-class life style. However, as I wrote previously 2014 Job Market Uneven For Graduates. It benefits some in engineering, scientific, R&D, IT and technical areas, but not others.

Additionally, recent research from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, College Measures and the American Institutes for Research demonstrates that holders of some associate degrees in scientific, engineering and technical fields are actually landing higher salaries, at least earlier on in their careers, than those investing the time and expense to gain BA and BS degrees!

graduate degreesThough this new research does continue to reinforce the notion that a 4-year college degree is worth the investment, it contradicts the long-term belief it is a lot more valuable than an associates degree. The growing body of data from states such as Texas, Colorado and Indiana proves this point. For example, in Indiana, figures show that graduates from Ivy Tech Community College are actually making more than the average 4-year degree graduates of Indiana University!

For example, New York Federal Reserve economists Jaison Abel and Richard Deitz calculated the annualized return on investment for the money invested into a college degree over a graduate’s career, pegging it at about 15% for current graduates. This figure, which far surpasses the typical returns on investment for stocks and bonds, has held largely constant for more than a decade.

U.S. jobs marketHowever, Abel and Deitz also found that the overall rate of return on a bachelor’s degree and an associate’s degree is very similar. Furthermore, this parallel value has remained constant for several decades in the U.S. jobs market. Though bachelor’s degree holders are earning more on average at about $65,800 than associate’s degree holders $46,300, if when Abel and Deitz factor in the cost of obtaining either degree (with bachelor’s degrees costing $110,000 to $130,000 versus associate’s degrees costing $40,000 to $60,000), the cost versus benefits (wages) remains constant at 15% return on investment for both types of degrees.

Anecdotally, my internal executive recruitment team, other engineering recruitment agencies we collaborate with and even the internal engineering recruiters and technical recruiters at many of our clients substantiate this fact. For example, in a recent search we did for Project and Process Engineers in injection molding, we found that most of the best-qualified candidates in fact had only acquired a technical or scientific or engineering associates degree.

In closing, does this mean that you should lean towards an associate’s degree over a bachelor’s? Not necessarily. It depends upon the field you choose. However, this is a fact you should take into consideration when deciding upon the time and expense of your education.

What are your thoughts?

2014 Job Market Uneven For Graduates

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014

The 2014 job market for recent graduates has improved over the last two graduation job markets, but that improvement is uneven. For college grads aged 20-24 the unemployment rate this year is 4.4 percent, which is greatly improved from 7.2 percent last year according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is almost 3 times better that that of their peers possessing only a high school diploma, which is 13.8%! However, these unemployment rates vary widely depending upon the field.

US job market

Recent college graduates with degrees in health care are experiencing only a 3% unemployment rate. Furthermore, a lot of hiring is being done for those with computer software, nursing and other engineering, R&D, scientific, IT and technical degrees. Additionally, many engineering recruiters, scientific recruiters and technical recruiters who are part of my executive recruiting monthly roundtable have shared that many of their clients are actually paying recruiting fees for recent graduates. This is a sign that these technical fields are in short supply and high demand.

This contrasts with an unemployment rate of 8% for those college graduates with liberal arts degrees according to a recent study by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Furthermore, not all engineering, scientific, R&D, IT and technical fields are in high demand among employers. For example, civil engineers and architects are finding it hard to land a job due to the continued weakness in the building construction industry. In these high unemployment areas when jobs are available they are usually temporary (contract) employment. Unfortunately, many recent graduates do not effectively mine these temporary opportunities.

Because of the slow growing economy countless companies fail to immediately hire full time employees due to the uncertainty of the future. However, they do often convert the best of the their temporary (contract) employees into full time positions after they prove themselves. That is why I recommend “Four Steps To Converting A Temporary Position Into A Full Time One.” This strategy will provide you a differential advantage versus your intense competition among other 2014 graduates for limited job opportunities. Please go to my recent YouTube video on the subject.

Will Robots Steal Future Jobs?

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

Amazon Prime AirEverywhere you turn are the wonders of cutting-edge technology including 3-D virtual reality, smartphones, robots and Amazon’s proposed new Prime Air pilotless drone delivery system that can deliver packages within 30 minutes of a customer order! As a result, our civilization has moved forward quantum leaps in R&D, scientific, engineering, IT, technical and manufacturing development.

Unfortunately, these breakthroughs may cost us many of our future jobs! In a recent study entitled, The Future of Employment: How Susceptible Are Jobs to Computerization,” authors Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael Osbourne of Oxford University predict that nearly 50% of U.S. workers will be replaced by robots within 10 to 20 years!

Japanese Robot HRP-4CResearch shows that as machine learning has dramatically progressed and lowered in cost, jobs like real estate agents, loan officers and office clerks will be replaced by robots and automation using artificial intelligence (AI). AI has already started to permeate the workplace with new tools that replicate human judgments that were previously too complicated and subtle to implement into a computer instructions just a few years ago. These AI Algorithms “learn” from past examples, which eliminate the need for mass, new software code for every new command. Such IT advances coupled with R&D advances in mobile robots make it highly likely that many of today’s U.S. workers will be replaced by automation!

Robot of the future JobOne current example of this dramatic transformation is the online peer-to-peer lender Daric Inc. Partly funded by former Wells Fargo & Co. Chairman Richard Kovacevich, this startup company has developed an AI algorithm that has not only learned what types of past borrowers make for safe credit risks, but also constantly updates its IT program to predict the most creditworthy in the future. As a result, Frey and Osborne believe that such AI programs will eventually replace 98% of today’s loan officers!

This is not all bad news. At executive recruiting conferences I regularly meet with other engineering recruiters, R&D recruiters, IT recruiters, scientific recruiters, technical recruiters and manufacturing recruiters to discuss the most difficult to fill positions. We all believe that many related engineering, scientific and technical positions, including hardware, software, robotics, AI, mechanical and biomechanical, will continue to be in short supply and high demand for many years to come as new, future derivations of AI are developed.

The main problem as I shared in one of my previous articles Exercise Our Nation’s Students Into More Engineering, Scientific and Technical Graduate Studies and Jobs is we need to dramatically improve our math, science and reading education to produce future leaders in the technical, scientific, engineering, IT, R&D and manufacturing fields. Without enhanced K-12 educational training we will not be able to generate enough engineers, scientists, R&D, IT, technical and manufacturing professionals needed for future AI, robotics and automation development.

What are your thoughts?

 

Permanent Employment Via Temp Jobs

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

Permanent Via TempAccording to the most recent, monthly Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) jobs report, only 192,000 new, full time jobs were created. This raised the average, during the first four months of 2014, to a miniscule 138,500 jobs created. Furthermore, BLS reported that:

  1. 20,100,000 Americans were either unemployed, underemployed (i.e. involuntarily working part-time because they could not find a full time job) or just gave up looking for work. This means that 1 in 5 or 20% of every person you meet is either unemployed, underemployed or has just given up looking for work!
  2. The Illinois’ unemployment rate is 2% worse than the national average at 8.7% versus 6.7% nationally!

Additionally, as I reported in a recent article “CEO’s See Increased Sales, But Not Increased Hiring” a new survey of CEO’s by the Business Roundtable uncovered that, even though CEO’s are expecting significantly increased capital spending and sales over the next six months, they are not expecting to dramatically increase hiring! However, the U.S. economy is still creating jobs. They just do not happen to be full time positions. The temporary staffing industry has experienced major growth since 2009. As a result, temporary (also called contract) positions now account for more than 10% of all jobs generated since 2009! How can job seekers become employed full time when most job openings are temporary? One strategy is taking advantage of the simultaneously occurring trend called temp-to-perm conversions. This means that an employer will hire an employee, such as an engineer, scientist, R&D, IT, manufacturing or technical professional, on a temporary basis, try them out for some period of time and then eventually convert them to a full time employee. Unfortunately, because most executive recruiters do not collect fees from this, they tend to advise job seekers against exploring temporary positions with temporary agencies. Furthermore, many technical, engineering and scientific candidates falsely believe that it will derail their full time job-hunting efforts if they investigate temporary jobs. This myth tends to be fueled by both:

  1. Permanent placement firms such as engineering recruitment agencies, scientific recruitment agencies, technical recruitment agencies and other types of full time executive recruiting firms, worried about loosing recruiting fees.
  2. The internal management recruiters of employers not savvy to the contract recruiting market.

Permanent placement firmsInstead, I recommend four steps to help you harness the power of the temporary or contract market. First, continue to explore all your full time employment options. Second, uncover top temporary employment agencies best suited to meeting your needs. For example, please go to http://asacentral.americanstaffing.net/ASADirectory/Home/CompanySearch for the American Staffing Association’s database. It will guide you to the best temporary agencies based upon such factors as location and occupational category. Third, contact those temporary agencies that seem to meet your requirements. Ask to speak to one of the recruiters that handles your field. Prepare and ask a short list of questions including:

  1. Who are some of your clients?
  2. How many placements have you made in my field in the last six months?
  3. How many of those placements were converted to full time positions?
  4. Who is the primary recruiter who handles my field?

Based upon this phone conversation (or unwillingness of the temp agency to either allow you to speak to a recruiter or answer these questions) decide which firms will best meet your needs. Finally, choose and list with the 3-4 contract temporary placement firms that you feel best meet your needs. This is the case since each firm has its own select sampling frame of key clients. Therefore, you need to make sure that your needs are fully covered with all the proper employers within your desired geographic areas and fields. Remember that the jobs market remains soft and there are no easy answers for finding a full time position. However, pursuing temporary jobs can lead to full time employment through temp-to-perm conversions. Please go to http://www.strategicsearch.com/interview-preparation-tips/interview-preparation-tips.php and click on #9 below for a short video I have prepared to help you reminder this trend. What are your thoughts?

Improve Your Technical Recruiting Efforts!

Monday, January 20th, 2014

The mission of each engineering recruiter at our engineering recruitment agency is to be on the constant look out for high quality engineers, scientists, IT and technical professionals to meet your engineering recruitment needs. This is but one example of the types of candidates our executive recruiting efforts can provide to meet your needs.

MULTI-INDUSTRY MANAGEMENT & CONSULTING EXECUTIVE

Business Process Optimization  Operational Excellence  Change Management

More than 15 years of leadership driving sustainable improvement of key performance metrics within multiple industries and companies of all sizes. Have held corporate-wide and global responsibility, managing up to 20 direct reports in systematically redesigning and optimizing business processes, driving continuous improvement, and leading change initiatives that…
• Lower costs
• Simplify systems
• Solve safety issues
• Enhance quality • Improve productivity
• Increase efficiency
• Streamline business operations
• Strengthen customer relations

Uncommonly strong interpersonal and communication proficiencies. Especially skilled at building buy-in and support for process improvement and change management initiatives, even among initially change-resistant leadership teams and organizations. Work closely with functional managers to incorporate their experience and expertise into solutions; create a team atmosphere in which all stakeholders are engaged, involved, and invested in the changes and improvements.

Six Sigma Green Belt – Black Belt in progress  MS and BS in Industrial Engineering

PROFESSIONAL HIGHLIGHTS
Ventura Foods, LLC – Brea, CA  $2.5 billion food manufacturer 2010 – Present

DIRECTOR OF MANUFACTURING SYSTEMS: Recruited by former boss for return to Ventura Foods as the business lead for the JD Edwards ERP deployment, leveraging prior experience to lead a team of 20 and effectively manage the business process change impact and associated change management challenges through the ERP deployment.

CONTRIBUTIONS SNAPSHOT: Faced with 11 manufacturing plants and 9 warehouses operating as 20 individual entities with little-to-no business process synergy, plus major additional challenges related to changing project managers, exceptionally tight timelines, and minimal dedicated resources, led team to meet or exceed every expectation and deliverable.

SELECTED ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
• Led team in conducting business process mapping and gap analysis in each facility; developed action and contingency plans, created communication and stakeholder management plan, provided training for each employee impacted by changes, and standardized business processes for key functions.
• Delivered first 2 ERP deployments 12% under budget, freeing funds to increase support staff which ultimately resulted in ~$2.7 million savings based on expedited deployment of remaining ERP modules.
• Consolidated 17 different tools and systems used by the operations team down to 5. Rolled out new business processes, producing real-time business results and improved efficiencies.

Informance International – Northbrook, IL  $4+ million software company 2006 – 2010

EXECUTIVE ACCOUNT MANAGER / CLIENT SOLUTIONS MANAGER: Earned rapid promotion to account manager in a global territory driving development of new business and revenue within many of the company’s largest and most important accounts. Sold and drove consulting engagements to support implementation of the company’s data collection and performance metrics reporting software.

CONTRIBUTIONS SNAPSHOT: Ranked as company’s #1 sales executive and consultant, leveraging unique mix of experience, excellent analytical abilities, and strong interpersonal skills to forge strong relationships within accounts. Consulted directly with multiple-industry clients across a wide range of Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000 companies, translating extensive operational metrics into actionable plans for continuous improvement that lowered expenses, eliminated inefficiencies, streamlined processes, and increased productivity.

SELECTED ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
• Developed and managed Informance’s largest account, propelling a $1 million increase in sales with the Fortune 500 packaged foods company the 1st year and continuing to grow the account year-over-year for the next 3 years.
• Positioned as the #1 sales executive company-wide for 3 straight years as an EAM, producing more that 33% of total company revenue. Outsold predecessor and colleagues by greater than 20% every year.
• Raised renewal rate on software maintenance contracts from 45% to 80%, and simultaneously increased maintenance revenue 150%. Repaired damaged relationships with 4 major accounts.
• Exceeded sales target of $1 million annually every year by a minimum of 20%. Played significant role in helping company grow from $2.5 million at hire to $4 million at its height.
• Managed and consulted within many key accounts, such as ConAgra, Clorox, Chevron, AkzoNobel, Cargill, Johnson & Johnson, Halliburton, Wyeth, Novartis, GlaxoSmithKlein, Coca Cola, and more.

Ventura Foods, LLC – Brea, CA  $2.5 billion food manufacturer 2004 – 2006

CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT ENGINEER: Supported and led the corporate-driven continuous improvement initiative. Facilitated and managed more than 30 Kaizen event teams.

CONTRIBUTIONS SNAPSHOT: In an effort complicated by the lack of standardized best practices and uniform operational performance metrics across the company’s 12 manufacturing facilities, led the corporate-wide continuous improvement initiative, producing ~$3 million in sustained savings and driving 5% improvement in overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) within 3 years, an achievement that was 2 years ahead of the corporate goal.

SELECTED ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
• Assembled process redesign team and led process mapping and associated manufacturing process redesign at the company’s largest plant. Successfully mitigated change management challenges associated with process redesign that impacted 30 hourly workers.
– Delivered $1.1 million annualized savings by eliminating process bottlenecks, loss, and waste.
– Increased productivity in the process area 400%.
– Reduced employee turnover rate 70%.
– Solved and mitigated a serious ergonomic problem, significantly reducing recordable safety incidents.
– Implemented similar process improvements in 3 other facilities, slashing overall process time 27%.
• Provided interim operations management that laid groundwork for the turnaround of a critical, failing facility in 3 months. Improved production efficiency 5%, eliminated customer complaints, and managed 3 new product line implementations. Led task force that resulted in new process for product development.
• Realized 100% ROI in less than 4 months as the project manager for the installation and implementation of an automated, lost-time data collection system.

Coors Brewing Company – Golden, CO  3rd largest brewer in the United States 2000 – 2004

INDUSTRIAL ENGINEER: Recruited to lead the Throughput Optimization and Loss/Waste Reduction modules of company’s World Class Operations initiative. Indirectly coordinated the activities of 100s of employees. Created fully developed training curriculum for Throughput Optimization and business process criteria for Loss/Waste Analysis. Identified untapped opportunity to optimize filling operations across all manufacturing lines. Improved run times 43% to 80 hours across all filling lines in 3 months, producing $400,000 annualized savings and 4% increase in capacity.

Hershey Foods Corporation – Wheat Ridge, CO  Largest chocolate manufacturer in North America 1997 – 2000

SENIOR ENGINEER / INDUSTRIAL ENGINEER: Managed $2 million annual capital budget and 20+related projects per year; drove manufacturing process improvement for the Denver plant with 200 employees and 25 production lines. Served as SAP trainer and Power User. With an investment of $150,000, delivered savings of $1.2 million annually and eliminated the #1 customer complaint and #1 safety issue. Developed production and supply chain performance measurement tool. Recipient of QTE Leadership Award for Innovation. Served as QTE Team Leader, coordinating team efforts in deploying 2 new products, implementing SAP, improving safety and quality, and cutting expenses ~$4 million.

EDUCATION: M.S. (1997) and B.S. (1995) in Industrial Engineering, FLORIDA STATE UNIVERSITY, Tallahassee

ASSOCIATIONS: Institute of Industrial Engineers  American Society of Quality  Quest International

Only 74,000 Jobs Created: ENGINEER A NEW RESUME!

Friday, January 10th, 2014

According to today’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) report, though the unemployment rate dropped another .3% to 6.7%, much of this drop was due to job seekers leaving the workforce (and thus not being counted by BLS)! Furthermore, only 74,000 new jobs were created last month (a drop of 156,000 from the previous month). However, with 1,309,000 new jobs created over the last 8 months, competition is increasing for existing jobs. This means that it is time to reformulate your resume!

Sectors that added jobs were:
1. Retail Trade rising by 55,000 new jobs in December. This brought the total to 121,000 jobs added in the last 3 months. Furthermore, the field averaged 32,000 new hires per month for all of 2013!
2. Wholesale Trade employment continuing to grow and adding 15,000 last month and averaging 8,000 per month for 2013.
3. Professional and Business Services added 19,000 last month and 75,000 over the last 3 months.
4. Manufacturing added 9,000 new workers and 55,000 over the last three months. However, the rate of increase is declining with only 77,000 added for 2013 versus 154,000 in 2012!

On the negative side:
1. Health Care, which has been a constant for growth over the last decade, actually decreased by 6,000 jobs. Furthermore, the employment has been trending down over the past 12 months averaging only 17,000 jobs created per month in 2013 versus 27,000 per month in 2012!
2. Construction lost 16,000 in December. However, did average adding 10,000 per month for 2013!
3. Information (e.g. motion pictures and sound recording) employment lost 12,000 in December.

Therefore, it is time to engineer a new resume. To that end, one mantra I recommend is: numbers, numbers, numbers. This means to include as many quantitative accomplishments as possible. Instead of saying, “I was part of a team to implement a new MRP system” one should quantify that. For example, “as a result of my 34 man-hours managing a team of 7 IT professionals, software engineers and design engineers which resulted in our new MRP system being engineered 30% ahead of schedule and saving our company $4.5 million.”

One should also include such quantitative accomplishments as patents, awards and any ways you have made or saved money for your employer. This will be a lot easier to quantify if you are an engineer, scientist or technical professional, but everyone can accomplish this task with some planning and calculations. Remember as a rule of thumb for every dollar you are paid in your job, your company will earn $3 or more for your efforts. To that end, an employer needs to feel that you will be generating profit from your work. That is why you should include as many “numbers” in your resume as possible.

DO YOU NEED A SENIOR RELIABILITY AND VALIDATION ENGINEER?

Monday, December 30th, 2013

Profile: Reliability and Validation Engineer with over 15 years experience including strong analytical foundation and extensive mechanical engineering experience in the area of product design and development.  Accomplished in designing, conducting, analyzing, and reporting tests and engineering experiments to demonstrate compliance with customer and regulatory requirements using cross-functional teams.

Technical: Safety, Performance, Reliability, and Durability Testing/Analysis

 Skills:         

  • Design and Statistical Analysis of Engineering Investigations and Experiments
  • Factorial Design of Experiments, (DOE)
  • Accelerated Life Testing, (ALT)
  • Stress, Fatigue, and Finite Element Analysis, (FEA)

Software: Microsoft Office Suite, Design Expert (Design of Experiments), WinSMITH Weibull (Reliability),

Proficiencies: MINITAB (General Statistical, Reliability, and DOE), and ANSYS (Finite Element Analysis)

 

Patents: Tool-Less Rotatable Depth Adjustment for Fastener Driving Tool (United States Patent US CONFIDENTIAL)

Fastening Tool with Blind Guide Work Contact Tip (United States Patent US CONFIDENTIAL)

Faceted Fastener Driver Bumper with Cooling Slots (Patent Pending)

   

Experience: ITW Paslode Pneumatic Tool Unit, Lake Forest, IL    (1995 to Present)

Manager Reliability/Validation Engineering                                

  • Served as principal reliability and validation member on cross-functional product development teams providing technical counsel and validation support throughout each product’s life.  Designed, analyzed, and reported results of product safety, performance, and reliability tests.  Reviewed, interpreted, and implemented product safety regulations; ANSI, CEN, and ISO.
  • Designed and analyzed R&D experiments in support of product development engineering including factorial Design of Experiments, (DOE), focused on increasing product power and performance, decreasing cost and weight, while maintaining or increasing durability.
  • Developed and implemented Highly Accelerated Life Testing using strain gauge test data in conjunction with finite element and probabilistic fatigue analyses … Six Sigma Green Belt Project.
  • Designed and implemented a reliable probabilistic method for analyzing fatigue failures in case hardened steel investment castings.
  • Commissioned to develop and instruct ‘In-House’ classes in Fatigue Analysis, Design of Experiments, and Understanding Reliability Analysis.
  • Created, published, and implemented the Paslode Engineering ‘Validation Handbook’, a comprehensive book of all procedures for product testing, engineering experiments, and validation.
  • Championed a cultural change in the Paslode Marketing and Engineering departments from using loose qualitative performance definitions to using verifiable data-driven quantitative requirements.
  • Managed projects, staffing, and budget for Paslode Pneumatic Tool Unit Validation Department; including two Lab Technicians and a variable workforce of twelve contract employees.  Managed Duo-Fast Engineering Services Department; including a permanent staff of nine and a variable workforce of seven contract employees.
  • Successfully doubled the output of the Duo-Fast Test Lab while reducing labor costs by 33% through the use of continuous improvement programs focused on workflow and data management.
  • Commissioned to solve a critical product safety fatigue failure in a pneumatic tool which precipitated a total product recall.  Designed and managed automatic accelerated life test fixtures for 24/7 operation, analyzed failures, and successfully redesigned the tool to ‘fail safe’ by replacing a crucial component in the field precluding the cost/logistics of recovering/redesigning/rebuilding the entire tool.
  • Trained Kanematsu-NNK Corporation, Duo-Fast Division (Atsugi City, Japan) engineers in the proper interpretation of and testing for compliance with CEN/ISO regulations for Hand-Arm Vibrations and Acoustic Noise Emission to obtain ‘CE Marking’ for their products.
  • Served as Technical Representative to the International Staple, Nail, and Tool Association.
  • Coordinated the relocation of the Engineering Department to Huntley, IL; on to Elgin, IL; and ultimately to Lake Forest, IL.

 

Education: B.S.M.E. (Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering)  Milwaukee School of Engineering, Milwaukee, WI

Associate in Applied Science in Mechanical Design   Gateway Technical Institute, Racine, WI

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GET YOUR MOTOR RUNNING FOR ENGINEERING JOBS.

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013

Originally produced in Springfield, Massachusetts, Indian Motorcycles were a symbol of America’s fascination with motorcycle engineering for over a generation. Unfortunately, the original owners went out of business in 1953.

Many have tried to revive the iconic Indian brand. Unluckily, most of those attempts failed. However, three years ago Polaris Industries, known more for engineering of snowmobiles and ATV’s, bought the Indian brand and vowed to bring back its glory days. Recently, the results of that promise have hit the streets in the form of three mighty machines: the Indiana Chief Classic, the Indian Chief Vintage and the Indian Chieftain.

This rollout was monumental for two major reasons. First, the Polaris Director of Engineering, Director of Manufacturing, Director of Quality, Director of Product Development all teamed up to streamline the entire product development process. This resulted in accelerating the rollout of all three of these motorcycles to only 27 months! This move from conceptual design and design engineering through manufacturing engineering out to the showroom is about 50% of the time it takes most companies take to launch a new bike!

Second and equally impressively, Polaris has launched these three bikes at very, very reasonable price points. For example, the previous owners of Indian were selling the Indian Chief Vintage for $36,000. Instead, Polaris is selling their 2014 Indian Chief Classic for less $19,000 and their top-of-the-line Chieftain for $22,999!

In order to accomplish both Herculean feats, Polaris orchestrated a team effort among all their key engineering, scientific, technical and marketing personnel including recruiting the best personnel and managing them effectively. This team effort permeated their entire organization including plant managers, directors of engineering, mechanical engineers, design engineers, CAD drafters, process engineers, quality engineers, material scientists, chemists, polymer scientists and engineers, product developers, electrical engineers, software engineers and IT professionals. Hopefully, Polaris will provide a benchmark for other organizations in the engineering, scientific and technical fields that I am a recruiter for. This will result in a lot more jobs for our U.S. economy!

TIME TO SHARPEN YOUR JOB INTERVIEWING SKILLS!

Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013

According to today’s delayed Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) report, 148,000 jobs were created in September. This adds up to 849,000 jobs being created in the last five months. Though not earth shattering, it has been slow and steady. This means that it is time to sharpen your interviewing skills.

The gains have been across the board in: 1) Professional and Business Services, which added a whopping 32,000 new jobs 2) Transportation and Warehousing, which added 23,000 3) Wholesale Trade, which continues to rise (adding 7,000 per month over the past year) by adding 16,000 and 4) Construction, which added 20,000 after showing little gain during the past 6 months. Furthermore, anecdotally, I have noticed that many of our clients have significantly ramped up hiring in the last few months (especially technical positions such as engineers, scientists and IT professionals). Unfortunately, few candidates are prepared for this hiring surge.

As a result, we recommend that many candidates, who have given up looking, may want to now sharpen up their job-hunting skills. Research shows that one can exponentially improve their interview performance by first practicing interviewing on videotape. To assist job seekers, we have developed a comprehensive system of interview preparation strategies; please go to http://www.strategicsearch.com/real-benefit-exercise/introduction.php to view.