Biopharmaceutical Bioprocessing Technology Centre

Manufacturing Jaguar Land Rover

Charlotte Atwell: Lead Engineer, Jaguar Land Rover

After her EngD works now as Lead Six Sigma Black Belt Engineer, Special Vehicle Operations at Jaguar Land Rover. Her thesis introduced her to Six Sigma and Lean Manufacturing an expertise essential for her current role.

Charlotte’s EngD project was in collaboration with Heineken where she worked on the optimisation of the cleaning process in their cider manufacturing site. The EngD introduced her to Six Sigma and Lean Manufacturing. An experience that turned out to be the foundation for a successful career in car manufacturing. As Charlotte puts it: “It was based strongly on the knowledge and experienced gained here, that I was able to gain a role in manufacturing at Jaguar Land Rover. When learning Six Sigma, I had already used most of the tools throughout my EngD, which meant I was able to excel at it, and gain a leadership position relatively quickly.”

Charlotte’ project is a good example for the research model of the BBTC, i.e. using Quality by Design (QbD) to improve processes. The application of QbD is a classic example of the implementation of Six Sigma principles and tools. Charlotte used many of the instruments common for Six Sigma, like risk-based in depth analysis, statistical design of experiments (DoE), robust process design and real-time process control through process analytical technology (PAT). Having used these tools on a real life project, which led to a real life impact, gave her a head start when starting at Jaguar Land Rover and she quickly moved up to a lead engineer position and is now holder of a Six Sigma Black Belt qualification.

As for many of her fellow students working with academics and industrialist at the intersection of university and industry meant that Charlotte gained a wide range of soft skills. She learned how to adapt to different personality styles and how to work well together in a team. The EngD experience has also improved her project management skills, tenacity and resilience, transferable skills, which are useful for any role. She experienced different leadership and management styles which she is using in her new role.

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