In this week’s employee spotlight we’re chatting to Production Engineer Jamie Rusbridge. Here’s what we found out:
When did you join Xtrac?
Just over 7 years ago now, in September 2014.
What does your job as Production Engineer entail?
I act as a link between the design office and the shop floor, ensuring that the parts we design can be manufactured. I’m responsible for defining the manufacturing routing, deciding which processes or machines a part needs in order to achieve the final design, along with designing any work holding or tooling required for processing on each of those machines at each stage of manufacture. Additionally, I get involved in some of the development work to improve our internal processes along with looking at potential new processes.
What qualifications do you have?
I’ve just finished a degree apprenticeship through University Centre Newbury having achieved my BEng in Mechanical Engineering Design in 2020. Prior to this, during my apprenticeship, I’ve worked from BTEC Level 3 through to Level 6 and NVQ Level 2 to Level 4.
What inspired you to pursue the career you have today?
As long as I can remember I’ve been interested in vehicles and inherently motorsport. I had a really positive experience through my product design classes in sixth form, being lucky in the fact that I was able to do turning, milling, brazing, welding and even some sand casting. From that point on I knew I wanted a career in engineering and with the combination of engineering and motorsport at Xtrac, the apprenticeship was a perfect fit for me.
What do you like most about your job?
The huge variety and problem-solving aspect of determining the manufacturing method for complex components and the challenges of working in a fast-paced environment. I greatly appreciate the quality of the engineering I’m surrounded by and the satisfaction of seeing our products in their final applications.
Which of your career achievements are you most proud of?
Winning the 2015 Apprentice of the Year award was a real boost to the start of my apprenticeship. In 2016, having completed my apprentice factory tour I secured a position in production engineering, where I’ve worked since. Since then, I’m proud of the variety of projects I’ve worked on, particularly some of the work on the recent P1320 ILEV transmission. It’s really satisfying to see scenarios where something I’ve advised or suggested works really well and improves one of our products.
Is there anything else you’d like to add about your experience at Xtrac?
My time at Xtrac has really shaped me into the engineer I am today, I can’t think of any other places where I could have gained the knowledge I have, over such a range of engineering operations. Growing up watching different forms of motorsport, I never imagined I’d be working on components for current generation cars or flying to America to deliver parts to a race team at a track!