Ute Hartl is a shift supervisor who has been working in the Saacke machines section since 2015, where she manages several employees. As a representative for the continuous improvement process and the 5S system, she is also deeply committed to constantly improving processes and structures in the production area.
Ute, you’re a female shift leader in a very male dominated environment – that’s not something you see every day. Could you tell us a bit about your work and your working environment?
I work in drill production in the Saacke machines section and lead a team of several employees there. My working day is never boring. We are responsible for setting up several machines and have to make sure that there is no downtime. I’m particularly impressed by the accuracy of the machining. What’s more, we don't manufacture the same tools every day; we’re always equipping the machinery with new details. New tools and tools in the development stage are particularly challenging. On top of that, I talk to my guys and the foremen a lot, because teamwork is very important to me. I supervise the trainees in our department and help new employees become familiar with the department. And even after all this time in the profession, I still put my heart and soul into it. I really enjoy making tools. As I have the expertise needed and – most importantly – plenty of experience in this profession, my colleagues respect and accept me. Our relationship is absolutely brilliant.
Is there anything that you are particularly proud of?
Yes, there is – my training to become a CIP trainer and 5S representative. In the production area, we use the 5S method for continuous improvement, which I help to implement throughout the company. I regularly organise workshops and have also had the opportunity to speak at the general staff meeting arranged by the works council. I also had the pleasure of presenting the results to our Managing Directors and even to Dr Jochen Kress and Dr Michael Fried, the President and Member of the Management Board of our parent company MAPAL. It goes without saying that it was a great honour for me.
How would you describe your relationship with your supervisors and colleagues?
My colleagues are committed to working as a team and respecting each other. They always have the motivation to learn something new. I really value that. In my experience, our foremen and supervisors are always there for us – and listen to us, too. And my direct superiors, Michael Unseld and Erik Baur, are both role models and mentors for me. When we thrash out ideas together, we do so on an equal footing and any issues are actively addressed. And despite his heavy workload, even our Managing Director Frank Rieber takes time to visit people around the whole company, to look at the boards on the shop floor and to talk to us. I think that’s admirable. In general, there’s a good sense of cooperation and helpfulness in my department and the environment I work in.
What do you think makes MILLER an attractive employer?
MILLER is a large company and is represented worldwide as part of the MAPAL Group. We manufacture high-quality products. MILLER is also known for being a clean and modern company that is continually being expanded. In addition to that, training, further education and study are really valued. There are good opportunities for advancement – for example, students are offered the chance to qualify as a master craftsman and to try out other fields of work. If you’re interested and willing to learn you can achieve a lot. And that doesn’t just apply to young people – I was 50 when I found the new challenge I was looking for here at MILLER!
Thanks for the fascinating insight, Ute!
Education and training
Further training as a CNC tool grinder
Career at MILLER
Started in 2015 as a tool grinder
Shift supervisor in drill production since 2018
CIP and 5S representative, Race Team member
Playing handball, driving Harley Davidson motorcycles and dancing