A Day in the Life of ...
Daniel Heaver

Daniel Heaver

Test Technician
Hamble, United Kingdom

What is the first thing you do when you get started with work for the day? 

Upon arriving to the site in Hamble, I put on my cleanroom gear and enter the cleanroom laboratory I work in. The first thing I like to do is check my emails to see if any updates were sent from the engineering department after I left the day before. Then, we have a short meeting to discuss what tasks need to be completed that day and assign them between us.  

What are your main areas of focus in your work as a Test Technician? 

As a Test Technician, my responsibilities are split between the cleanroom and our “ultra” cleanroom. The tasks are wide ranging and revolve around constructing and testing different fibre builds and viewports. Typically, a fibre build starts with cutting the jackets to feed the fibre through, measuring the fibre and attaching connectors, polishing fibre ends, optical testing, and testing the builds cleanliness and integrity before wrapping it in preparation for shipment. Viewports arrive pre-constructed, and we test them to guarantee their usability. To ensure this is a success, I am responsible for maintaining the cleanroom standards and liaising with engineers to overcome any challenges and closely following work instructions. Communication both within the department and between departments is critical to overcome any problems and improve our methods. 

How do you organize/structure your work day with tasks/projects?   

At the start of every day, my team will have a discussion about the tasks to complete. Once completed, we can start working through tasks in the order of urgency. Throughout the day, we communicate with other departments if problems arise. Any plans are subject to change, thus, being dynamic and agile is important. 

As a Test Technician, do you collaborate with a team or mainly work autonomously? Which do you prefer?  

All my work requires some degree of collaboration with the rest of the team and additionally, often between other departments  in order to meet deadlines and ensure the product is made to the correct specification. With many of the individual tasks, I tend to work more autonomously, but I know that, should any problems arise, help isn’t far away. This is a mix I like as it balances teamwork with the productivity of independent working. 

Which part of your work do you enjoy the most, and why? 

I feel very fortunate to work as part of such a fantastic team. I find new projects and challenges exciting and I am constantly progressing and learning new skills. The site at Hamble is full of friendly and helpful staff who take pride in their work and take time to help me understand the processes that occur here. 

If you had more hours in the day to focus on new skills related to your job or projects for your work, what would you focus on?  

I am keen to develop my skills in my current role. When new projects come into our department, I am always eager to understand the role that each component has, how it will be used, and the engineering process behind it. 

What is your special skill/ magic power/ hobby you’re proud of?  

I have a passion for sports and I play tennis for two local clubs in Hampshire; one of which I was recently elected to the committee and won my first tournament last year. Also, I volunteer for a mental health charity and I am a big advocate of taking care of our mental wellbeing.  Finally, I enjoy walks in the New Forest with Petra, my Romanian rescue dog.