OxTS was first to develop MEMS based INS products for the automotive industry and we have been pro-actively developing improvements and new technologies ever since. We invest ourselves in projects helping customers to overcome whatever challenge they are facing, or achieve whatever technology break-through they are seeking. Here, Mark Harris, OxTS Engineering Project Manager, shares a ‘day in his life’:
1. How long have you worked at OxTS, and what led you to this career?
I joined OxTS in March 2019, having previously worked for household names in the automotive and consumer electronics sectors. I also brought experience from both the aerospace industry and a smaller tier 1 and tier 2 supplier to the automotive industry. During my time with these organisations, my roles were a mixture of engineering and project management, tending more towards project management most recently.
Throughout my career, I have predominantly worked in teams charged with user or industry standards testing and this experience has taught me to step back and view the bigger picture when it comes to project progress and delivery. I utilise these skills in my work for OxTS, which is possibly what drew me to my current role.
2. What are your key responsibilities in your role as Engineering Project Manager at OxTS?
My role is, unsurprisingly, all about ensuring the delivery of key projects in our business, be they new products offered to our automotive or survey business customers, or customer specific developments for some of our key customers. Primarily, my job is about meeting customers’ needs through co-ordination within the engineering department and beyond, making sure that the necessary product specification information has been provided and agreed, that the development and testing of prototypes is progressing to plan and that the necessary design information is shared with our production team to allow them to manufacture our products. We set, and usually achieve, ambitious targets for ourselves.
3. What’s a work-related accomplishment that you’re really proud of?
At OxTS, we work as a team and we achieve as a team. There have been several projects which I would modestly say I’ve had a minor hand in helping to deliver. The first of them being the release of the RT3000 v3 a little under two years ago. The RT3000 is the industry standard GNSS/INS for ADAS and autonomous vehicle testing. Most recently, the launch of the xNAV650 stands out as something I am pleased to have been a part of. This ground-breaking device was designed in a comparatively short period of time and, as our smallest and lightest INS to date, it delivers a performance that has clearly created a buzz in the marketplace, judging from the number of enquires we have received since launch.
4. What’s been your most challenging project so far, and how have you overcome this?
Two projects stand out for me in this area. The first was a customer project which allowed OxTS to develop a new ultra-wideband indoor positioning solution for our customers. This project was a collaboration with several partners and a great deal of uncertainty. Through clever teamwork, we were able to leverage the strengths of each contributor and demonstrate a working solution in the timescales requested by our customer.
The other project which is currently giving me and the team of people I’m working with some significant challenges is one that we have only recently started which means that, unfortunately, I’m unable to elaborate any real details about this yet. However, it is something that we believe will really enhance OxTS’ offerings to our customers, and I’ll look forward to telling more about this in another blog, when we’ve got this project over the finish line.
5. What’s the best thing about being part of the OxTS team?
The OxTS people! As I have experienced throughout my career, the thing that makes the most difference when it comes to a good team is the individuals that you are working with. OxTS has a strong team who know a great deal about their products and markets, and know how to get the best out of the solutions they can offer to their customers, so that customers can measure with confidence.
6. What are your goals for the next 12 months at OxTS?
There are several projects on the near horizon I am excited to get involved in and see through to launch. And I look forward to seeing what additional bespoke opportunities present themselves, possibly building on our recent successful projects such as the xNAV650 and the ultra-wideband indoor positioning solution – or possibly further innovation to meet new customers’ requirements and enable them to navigate and survey anywhere.
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