Where do the requirements come from?
The requirements primarily come from customers. For example, someone on a building site says “Wouldn’t it be great to something like that!”. Comments like that go to the application engineer, who is usually on site as well to support our customers. From there, it goes on to product management. The interdepartmental product committee discusses what is worth doing and what is not. Finally, another committee formulates the requirements for a new adhesive, and those are passed to the developer. Overall, we work very closely with customers, application engineering and product management to develop a product together.
How long does it take to develop an adhesive?
It varies, because an adhesive just does what it wants. Theoretically, a developer knows in advance the direction it will go in, but when you touch it, you may see that it is not going to work after all. We have information and standard formulas from manufacturers, but most of that is not useful for our applications. There is a wide range of raw materials, so you have to try a lot. It takes a lot of stamina and experience to find out which raw material is the right one. We mix up to 200 trials - and that can take a long time. Once you have the right mix, the final testing for an adhesive takes about half a year on its own. You have to test stability in storage, as the adhesive should be stable for at least a year.
Do you enjoy working at the Uzin Utz Group?
I think the company is superb. It is just great how Dr. Utz and Mr. Müllerschön work with us. They do not just say employees are at the heart of everything, they act on that approach too. The Horizons program is much more than just going through the motions. I really enjoyed the “Women in Leadership” seminar. It was very valuable for me personally and a great experience. The seminar with Holger Fischer was also very, very useful. I am really grateful to the Board for the opportunity.