The world marks International Women's Day (IWD) on March 8 – a global day recognizing the contributions and achievements of women in their communities and businesses. At ARCH Rhode Island, in Smithfield Rhode Island, Susan Mulcahy is an example of the spirit that IWD celebrates.
Susan, who joined ARCH Rhode Island five years ago, is officially an Etching and Packaging Operator. But her title belies the responsibilities and expertise her role requires.
ARCH Rhode Island is a manufacturer of custom new and re-worked solid carbide and carbide-tipped cutting tools for the medical, automotive, firearms and general industrial markets. Susan plays a critical role in the manufacturing process – managing through-put between production and shipment to customers. She is the Lead Operator of a high-tech Beamer Laser System. When finished products come to her department, she performs the critical etching necessary and packages the products for shipping.
"Sometimes, I'm etching a few pieces at a time, sometimes it's hundreds at a time," Susan says. "The technology is flexible and efficient, so I'm able to manage the work flow and enhance our through-put."
In her role, she plays a key part in maintaining the production schedule.
"As the tools come to me, I have to be aware of the production and delivery schedules," she added. "I prioritize based on due date. Some projects require just-in-time delivery, some are even rush delivery, so I have to adjust workflow appropriately."
How did she prepare for this tech-oriented career in manufacturing, operating one of the industry's most high-tech pieces of equipment? Not the way you might think.
"Five years ago, I was looking for a part-time job and a friend referred me here," said Susan. "It wasn't long before the part-time job evolved into a full-time position, and the opportunity to operate the Beamer Laser System."
With previous work experience as a waitress and a customer service representative for a cable TV provider, Susan didn't bring a technical background to her full-time role. But she did bring confidence.
"At first I thought, 'oh my gosh' but as I trained, I gained confidence," she said. "I used online Beamer Laser Systems training, had some conference calls with them; and I benefitted from a lot of on-site expertise here in the plant, co-workers with experience helped me. A lot of it was 'learn as you go'."
She learned well, according to Craig Hundertmark, General Manager ARCH Rhode Island.
"Susan goes out of her way in everything she does," he said. "She takes pride in what she does and she's a significant contributor to managing our overall workflow and maintaining through-put."
And, he notes, Susan excels in another area – attendance.
"We can always count on her to be here," Craig said. "She wins 'Perfect Attendance' every quarter."
Perfect attendance seems to indicate a genuine love of her job. What does Susan find most rewarding about her work?
"So many things," she says. "I work with great people. I enjoy the independence of my role too. I know what I have to do and even if it involves multi-tasking, I get it done. There's a lot of variety, and there's always help from my co-workers, if I need it."
Coming to this role later in her career, and with a non-manufacturing and non-technical background, did anything surprise her?
"I didn't realize the precision involved in tools when I started," Susan said. "But I work with such experienced people – current and former tool makers – who are so professional, that I first gained an awareness and now I have a high-level understanding of the business."
That's something to celebrate – any day of the year.
ARCH Cutting Tools is pleased to announce and welcome Marcus Ralston as Director of Product Management - Standards. Marcus is responsible for business development, brand integration, sales forecasting, marketing initiatives, and customer relationships for the KEO Standards, Richards Microtools, Ultra-Dex and KEO Milling Solutions product lines.
Throughout his career of more than 20 years, Marcus has focused primarily primary on developing and implementing strategic sales and service models, effective channel management, customer advocacy and direct marketing implementation.
Earlier in his career, he served as Vice President of Business Development for Harvey Performance, where he was responsible for sales growth and for the coordination of the operations of Sales and Application Engineering, Custom Solutions and Customer Service. Marcus also worked as an Application Engineer with Kennametal, where he partnered with R&D to refine tool geometry, conduct beta testing and to create technical content for a wide range of successful solid carbide cutting tool designs in milling, threading and hole-making across the organization's 20-brand portfolio.
A veteran of Desert Storm, Marcus served 14 years in the U.S. Army. He graduated Summa Cum Laude from Southern New Hampshire University with a B.S. in Organizational Leadership and he also holds a diploma in Nuclear, Biological & Chemical Defense from the U.S. Army Chemical Defense Institute.
"I look forward to putting my experience to work in this dynamic organization," Marcus says. "Building on our dedication to customer service, we will grow in our capabilities and continue to be the industry leaders."
Contact Marcus Ralston at 603-545-7355, or at email@example.com
EDM Hole Popper
Wild Mill -
R I Carbide Tool Co. founded in 1959 specifically for manufacturing special tooling for the Medical, Aero Space, Automotive and other manufacturing industries has introduced the Wild Mill® . A Premium Solid Carbide End Mill , designed by Jonathan Wild, Vice President of CNC Cutting Tool Operations at RICT. Testimonials from various industry users report that the Wild Mill® offers superior chatter suppression, cuts sharper, longer and faster in 17-4 Stainless Steel and other hard to cut materials. The Wild Mill® is reported to last 140% to 200 % longer than other premium brands, is coated in ALTIN and is available in 4 or 5 flute, corner radius or square end, rougher or finish styles. Most styles and sizes are available from stock or if not, can be made to your specific needs within a short delivery date.
John Lombari, company President stated, "we have invested Several Million Dollars in the past 3 yrs in World Class cutting tool technology.
This state-of-the-art equipment combined with over 55 years experience, positions R I Carbide Tool operations, second to none in the country. Although we specialize in SPECIALS we supply many of our customers with standards as well as regrinds and recoating their tools to better than new condition".
R I Carbide Tool Co. https://ricarbide.com