Meet Barbara – Customer Care Lead, SuperTrak CONVEYANCE™ (ATS Automation)

As a Geologist with a background in mining, the majority of Barbara’s working life has been in male-dominated environments. Fast forward to today, she has been working in manufacturing for almost four years.

When Barbara began working for ATS in June 2022, she brought a fresh perspective of what customer care should be.

As the Customer Care Lead, she is the liaison between the customer, the sales team, and the production team. She has been extensively involved in learning about the actual manufacturing of parts, which she wasn’t familiar with before joining ATS.

How I would describe working in manufacturing:

Challenging – You have new challenges every day. It doesn’t matter which specific industry within manufacturing you’re working in, it’s going to be challenging.

Technological – In the areas that I’ve worked in, they are always driven by technology.

Teamwork – You always have to work with others.

Process driven – You’ll always have processes to follow and also have the opportunity to improve them.

Full of opportunities – Doors never close when you’re working in manufacturing.

What continues to attract me to a career in manufacturing:

There is an incredible amount of opportunities to improve processes – finding new ways of doing the same things better and better. This is what I like the most – just because you’ve been doing things this way for 10 years doesn’t mean you can’t improve. You’re always thinking ahead and how to make things better, faster, and easier.

Connecting and learning from other women in manufacturing:

Working at ATS, this is the first time I’ve had a boss who is a woman. She’s also a big advocate of women in manufacturing. I’ve only been at ATS for eight months and I’m already enrolled in CME’s leadership training for women in manufacturing, which has taught me so much.

Our division has a high percentage of women working in several different roles. Women are on the production floor, as team leads in production, in the warehouse area, in the procurement area, in customer care, HR, engineering, and several other leading roles.

This is great because we have diversity, not just thinking about women and men, but those from all different backgrounds working well together.

If I need to talk to someone from a different division about something, there are women around that I can go to and build a relationship with them. Everyone has been very approachable and open to help and answer any questions that I may have.

Advice I would give to a woman considering a career in manufacturing:

Do the best you can do, but don’t try to solve all the problems at once as some things are beyond your control. Stop, think, and get more people involved. Manufacturing is all about team efforts. Make what you’re doing a team effort and accept the fact that not everything is solvable at the pace you would like it to be.

Fun fact:

I absolutely love board games, video games, and games in general. It’s not even about winning for me – I truly enjoy the process of playing them no matter the result.