My Career: Bringing plans to fruition is satisfying

In our weekly WoW! column, My Career we talk to women about their jobs. Today we feature Mariana Gonzalez Puente, Supply Chain Administrator at North Cork Creameries
My Career: Bringing plans to fruition is satisfying

Mariana Gonzalez Puente, features in My Career. She is the Supply Chain Administrator at North Cork Creameries

Name: Mariana Gonzalez Puente 

Age: 30

Lives: Millstreet, Co. Cork.

Job title: Supply Chain Administrator - North Cork Creameries 

Salary bracket: 35,000-45,000

Education background: Industrial Engineering Degree in UANL University in Mexico. Masters in Data Science and Analytics in Cork Institute of Technology (now MTU).

Hobbies: Travelling – Exploring Europe and its history is one of the things that I love the most. I do love watching a good film – anything historical, based on true stories and of course rom-coms are my go-to. Dancing!

Describe your job in five words: Keeping the supply chain moving.

Describe yourself in five words: Creative, logical, good-humoured, curious and adventurous.

Personality needed for this kind of work? Problem solving, analytical, detail-oriented.

How long are you doing this job? Nearly three years in this role but I have been working in Supply Chain Management for five years.

How did you get this job? As an Industrial Engineering student in Mexico, I had two offers for work placements. One was in Engineering and the other was in Supply Chain Planning. 

I chose the Supply Chain, thoroughly enjoyed it, and I became interested in this area. 

I subsequently spent two years as a graduate working in the Supply Chain for a multinational before a friend and I decided to travel to Ireland to experience a new way of life, travel and explore Europe and to try to perfect our English. I had always intended to do a Masters degree, so I decided to study a full-time Masters in Data Science and Analytics in CIT (now MTU). I chose this course because I felt it would complement my Engineering degree with a view to furthering my career in the Supply Chain. Shortly after my graduation I saw the position in North Cork Creameries so I decided to go for it. Funnily enough, when I was at my now-husband’s home one day, I saw the carton of Kanturk dairy milk and I thought that it was the nicest milk carton packaging I had ever seen, so I think that made the job catch my eye!

Do you need particular qualifications or experience? An Engineering degree or Supply Chain Management degree.

Describe a day at work: I start with my to-do list, prioritising and allocating time to each task. Each morning we have an online meeting with the other departments to revise the previous day’s metrics. After the meeting I organise the transport and warehousing of the loads of butter that are to be dispatched the following day. I download and analyse the stock reports from our system. Purchasing is one of my main tasks, I need to ensure that we have adequate, but not excess, stocks of packaging and ingredients. 

I spend a lot of time on the computer but there is also the variety of communicating and working with people in the warehouse, transport companies and in the production facilities. 

Alongside my day-to-day tasks, there are projects ongoing at my workplace. I have been involved in our most recent launch: award-winning Ór-Real Irish Butter and in some environmentally friendly projects that we are doing such as changing some of our products to plant-based packaging.

How many hours do you work a week? I work 39 hours per week.

What do you wear to work? Safety boots and a hi-visibility vest are a must!

Is your industry male or female dominated? A lot of women work within the dairy industry and many colleagues and peers in the supply chain are female.

Does this affect you in any particular way? No.

Is your job stressful? How? Rate it on a scale of 1-10: I would rate my job as being a six out of ten. There are some challenging things at work and it can be very busy at times but having kind colleagues helps to alleviate stress.

Do you work with others or on your own? There are two of us on the team, a Supply Chain Graduate and I, but I work with many people throughout the day.

In North Cork Creameries they look after our professional growth and every year we have the opportunity to further our education. This year I am doing a management development course which is helping me to develop my leadership skills.

When do you plan to retire or give up working? I just turned 30 so I think that I will be working for a while yet.

Best bits: Analysing a challenge, coming up with a plan and bringing the plan to fruition is quite satisfying. Being part of the Ór-Real Irish Butter team which has won three food awards this year. Working with good people every day.

Worst bits: At times I do worry about work but overall it’s a role I enjoy.

Advice to those who want your job? Teamwork is everything. Making plans is the best way to manage time. Be proactive.

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