Engineering is definitely the area holding a lot of job opportunities and prospects, and female professionals interested in tech are exploring it more and more often. However, many people still have some misconceptions about it: engineering roles are depicted as somehow limited and even dull. And it couldn’t be further from the truth: we recently spoke with Eglė Dubauskė, Head of Quality Production at HELLA Lithuania. Having worked in quality engineering for 6 years, Eglė shared her story and provided some useful insights for anyone considering this career path.
Egle, tell us a bit about yourself. What is your current role, and what are you responsible for?
Currently, I’m the Head of Quality Production at HELLA Lithuania, focusing on the production side of things specifically. The main responsibility of my work is to lead the team of quality specialists and technicians who ensure that our products are produced and delivered at the best quality according to various customer requirements. I’m involved in this process from the early project phases to the final serial production steps and continued improvements.
What did your career path look like?
I studied at KTU (Kaunas University of Technology) while did Mechanical Engineering for my Bachelors degree and Industrial Engineering and Management for my Masters degree. I really enjoyed my postgraduate studies where I deepened my knowledge gained at the previous course. Additionally, I seasoned it with extensive management skills. There, I truly understood that production and quality are the areas where I would like to see myself spending every day in the future! I started my career as the Quality Assistant in the automotive industry and joined Littelfuse as the Quality Engineer later. During this time, I gained a lot of practice which was useful for my theoretical understanding.
What career opportunities did you have after graduation?
There were many right after the bachelor studies already! From design engineering or manufacturing engineering to junior project management positions, the choice was pretty wide.
Apart from university studies, are there any other ways to get a role in engineering?
The best way to kickstart is to secure an intern role and see if it works for you – after all, internships help to explore the industry quite well. Apart from it, the mindset is no less important. For example, I have colleagues and employees from different educational backgrounds than myself, but they never cease to amaze me with a sharp mind, attention to detail and quality mindset. These traits are crucial in our department. However, education in engineering is a must in some areas, where a specific skill set is mandatory. For instance, any quality specialist has to know customer requirements for product and process and international quality standards whereas manufacturing engineers have to be experts in production efficiency methods (LEAN, 5S, DMAIC), quality analysis methods, know technological processes and the latest trends. Nevertheless, not having an engineering degree, mustn’t be a showstopper while pursuing your ambition.
And which engineers are currently the most demanded?
Quality specialists and manufacturing engineers are really needed in the job market today! The former ones coordinate sample testing for a client as well as create, produce and update quality documents, such as testing and control plans. Additionally, quality specialists are involved in selecting and defining production concepts or supervising project audits. Finally, they are managing various escalations and communications with customers regarding quality related topics.
Meanwhile, manufacturing engineers are responsible for the serial production as their daily tasks include the preparation of the production lines for new products, the implementation of line improvements, the analysis of production disturbances and the organization of their elimination. Also, these people are in charge of the implementation of industrial project production processes along with planning and coordinating them. Besides that, responsibilities can include creating and controlling the budget, scheduling the line purchasing, organizing the installation of the line, and drawing up a plan for the purchase of components.
And what is the most exciting thing about engineering to you?
It’s like mercury! A very fast-moving environment, I must say. What fascinates me is that no two days will ever be the same because the pace and variety of different situations still encourage me to stretch and look for new solutions and ways to improve my goals. I’m also very proud to work in such a large team of professionals and specialists in this field, who also actively share their knowledge. Only by working together, we can achieve the best results.