With manufacturing operations in Poland and the US to look after, life for our October SuperSealer is as busy as it gets. He tells us why, after 18 years at Trelleborg, he’s still striving for excellence, and why he’s always got one eye on the future.
Who are you?
My name is Rafal Dziedzic and I’m an operations manager. I’m responsible for Trelleborg’s pipe seal manufacturing operations in Bielsko-Biala, Poland, and in Milford and Bonne Terre in the US.
How long have you worked in this position? What are your key duties?
I’ve been with Trelleborg for 18 years. I was initially appointed to oversee operations at our Bielsko-Biala site. Since 2016, I’ve been responsible for our US manufacturing sites as well.
It’s my job to ensure that Trelleborg continues to offer the highest-quality sealing solutions on the market, with the lowest costs and the shortest delivery times. It means putting in place manufacturing strategies that my team and I then bring to life.
I combine my core responsibilities with my position on Trelleborg’s Manufacturing Excellence Board, making sure that our business unit continues to hit the highest standards for excellence.
What do you enjoy most about working here?
I love the fact that Trelleborg is a global company. Every day, around the world, we have more than 20,000 people working with rubber, sharing their ideas and know-how. It’s a great environment to work in and a fantastic breeding ground for innovation.
I also really like the excellent programs we have in place across the company – everyone is constantly striving to better themselves and improve the way we do things.
What are the biggest challenges you face in your job?
As our operations expand, labor shortages are becoming a significant issue across our manufacturing sites. A lot of the work we do is highly technical and innovative, and it means we need the best of the best. From a leadership perspective, it’s essential that we continue to promote a positive, dynamic working environment, so that the best people want to work for us. We are also looking at ways to automate certain elements of our production processes.
How do you see your business area developing in the future? How are you preparing for this?
Without a doubt, automation and digitalization are the way forward for businesses like ours, and I strongly believe that our manufacturing sites should follow this path. We’ve recently implemented a manufacturing execution system (MES) at the Bielsko-Biala site. This is a digital system that allows us to track the performance of our machines more accurately and to react quickly to problems when they arise.
We are also looking into the possibility of introducing process automation platforms to the Milford and Bielsko-Biala facilities.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I like to spend time working on my garden or doing things around the house. I also enjoy outdoor pursuits like jogging and hiking, or skiing in the winter. I try and make time to go to a few rock or jazz concerts each year if I can.
“Without a doubt, automation and digitalization are the future. It’s the way forward for businesses like ours.”
Operation Manager at Trelleborg Pipe Seals
Read more about the commited employes of Trelleborg's pipe seal operation. All interviews with the people behind the company at a glance.