Technology has always been her thing and it still is today. That is the best prerequisite because as the production manager, Angelika G. handles all the challenges at voestalpine Precision Strip’s Kematen cold rolling mill.
Angelika G.’s passion for technology and craftsmanship was virtually predestined. Her father is a blacksmith and he started taking her with him to the family’s forge when she was very young. “There are photos of me as a very small child standing in front of our air hammer,” recalls Angelika with a smile. She has carried this technical inclination that started in early childhood throughout her entire professional career and it still accompanies her today. As production manager, she ensures that everything runs smoothly during the production of the high-quality cold-rolled strips at the Kematen cold rolling mill.
Broad becomes deep.
Angelika got her first taste of voestalpine during two internships and later in the working student program. After completing her degree in industrial engineering at HTL Waidhofen and studying metallurgy at the Montanuniversität Leoben, her path initially led her to research and development at voestalpine Precision Strip in 2012. She had already been deeply involved in cold rolling for her diploma thesis. She eventually put this knowledge into practice.
"The knowledge you acquire becomes deeper and deeper during your education. At HTL you learn general engineering knowledge, and when you study you broaden these basics. On the job you need a deeper understanding and less breadth."
Hardware store meets fast food.
Angelika G. has been in her position as production manager since 2014. She watches over the production of high-quality cold-rolled strip in Kematen. She often sees the end products of “her” cold-rolled belts in her everyday life. “We supply starting material for many of the saws sold in hardware stores. And the boxes of a well-known fast food chain are punched on our packaging punching lines,” she says. It is crucial that the belt quality is perfect, which is why it is often a topic in the daily morning meeting. A fixed point in Angelika’s otherwise very dynamic daily routine.
Diversified and well filled.
That is how Angelika describes her working days. She is responsible for around 70 production employees and is the link between the company and other departments. From numerous organizational matters to personnel issues and personal discussions with employees to quality issues and groundbreaking research questions, the production manager’s daily to-do list is as full as it is varied. “That’s what makes my job right for me. It’s always exciting because even though you have a plan, the company always has surprises in store,” comments Angelika. That is why keeping a cool head in challenging situations is also an important part of her job.
Wire rope for steel strip.
Now Angelika can channel this level-headedness into her work even more. Since April 2022, she has been back in her position as production manager following a two-year leave of absence. With fewer hours per week, but more composure and nerves of steel—the kind that mostly parents are familiar with. “When you come back from maternity leave and the framework conditions are right on both sides, a very good mixture emerges. Both worlds can be ideally combined and everyone benefits,” says Angelika Gruber. She finds the right balance to her job not only by spending time with her young daughter and her husband—the passionate vegetable gardener also enjoys gardening in her greenhouse at home.
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