Daniel – Quality Technician

If you would like to work in the textile manufacturing industry and, like Daniel, quite fancy testing the flame retardancy of different fabrics to check for consistency, then check out his profile below as this may be a future career for you.

What attracted you to this job?

One of my colleges in my last job did a work placement here whilst she was at university and told me how progressive Camira is with developing new fabrics and their staff. I then applied to two jobs previously but I wasn’t successful. When my current role came up I fitted the description quite well and I was impressed by Camira’s environmental and work philosophy during the interviews that I had.

What does your typical day involve?

There is quite a lot of variability in my day but my typical day involves preparing and testing fabric for routine fire tests in the fire room. This is to ensure that our fabric maintains certain standards so that they get through external testing and to ensure that the flame retardancy of the fabrics are constant from batch to batch.

In addition to this I organize external testing of our fabric to meet the different standards required by our customers and to give advice on the tests which are needed. I also give technical details on the likelihood of passing and failing particular tests as not all fabrics are good for 100% of all tests.

What gives you the most job satisfaction?

Knowing that what I do is integral to Camira and that I help to keep our fabrics out on buses, rails and in offices.

What do your friends and family think about your job?

 

They first thought that I was an arsonist, but when I explained my job role in more detail they still thought I was an arsonist! Overall they are quite impressed with what I do, but it does mean I am the one who has the light the BBQ each time!

Tell us more about your environment in terms of work-life balance?

There is a strong team bond within our department; however as I live in Oldham and have a child, I cannot take part in all the social events our company and department organises due to the distance I have to travel.

How did you get to where you are today? (i.e. qualifications and career route)

After University I started my career with fire testing at BTTG-FTS in Altrincham in November 2002, where I tested PPE (or Personal Protective Equipment) for Heat and Flame resistance testing to European British and International Standards.I did AS and A levels in Science and Business Studies at college before going on to study an Honours degree in Forensic and Analytical Chemistry at Huddersfield University.

I then moved to Bureau Veritas in 2009 where I tested consumer products to similar British, European and International standards. I also had the chance to air issues within the flammability standards by taking part in UK Textiles Laboratory Forums and even attending a BSI meeting in London to discuss the issues at a government level.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of following your path?

I would advise you to study hard and also to get involved with clubs and groups outside of school/college/university (or part of university). Clubs and external groups are a great way of meeting people and learning new skills which are all transferable into any job. I would also definitely recommend doing the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme as it great for young adults to do.

How well is your job compensated? What is the starting salary for someone in your field, and how much can this be expected to rise?

Salaries generally start at around £14k for a junior technician with a degree and will rise to around 20k for a senior technician. From there you can become a technologist or engineer and the salary would increase to around 25-30k.

Out of ‘office hours’, what lights your fire?

My hobbies are generally being outdoors either doing some gardening in my back yard or by going for walks with my family to the local countryside parks. In addition, I am an adult instructor for the Greater Manchester Army Cadet Forces based in Failsworth. This involve a lot of outdoor activities i.e. expeditions/walks, campcraft, first aid and skill at arms (shooting) plus the chance to teach teenagers these subjects.

Have there been any embarrassing moments?

I am not too keen on having my picture taken so anything to do with that I find embarrassing. Especially in the first week of working here as my picture was on the company TV display for a month or two.

 

Developed in association with Camira Fabrics.