Here at Alco, we like to give recognition and praise to our most important assets, our staff. Each month we highlight one of more staff members at random, find out a little more about what they do at Alco, how long they’ve been with the company, and what they think about working for Alco. This month we will be focusing our attention on Joshua Milthorpe, one of our busy Apprentice Quality Engineers.
Joshua initially started at Alco Valves Group In August 2013 when he completed 2 weeks of Work Experience working in QA for one week and on the shop floor (assembling Ball and Needle Valves) for the 2nd week. Due to his hard work and impressing a lot of people at Alco, in January 2014, he was offered a part time role, working 12 hours a week whilst also studying for his A-Levels at Rastrick High School Sixth Form. Furthermore, in August 2014, Josh was given the opportunity to study for an Apprenticeship in Mechanical and Electrical Maintenance at Kirklees Engineering Centre. He is due to start his third year, and after a fourth year he will have gained his full qualifications.
Joshua is yet another example of well hard work and dedication is rewarded at Alco and now 3 years later Joshua's main responsibility at Alco is Final Inspection, where he has the critical role of working to inspect Hi-Tek and Sub-Tek Valves, which are some of the companies most sophisticated products. His integral role helps to ensure that all Valves which leave the facility are to the safest they can possibly be and also to the customer's specifications, and expectations. This very complicated role consists of the following;
· Completing a visual inspection of sealing surfaces
· Checking of any threads
· Checking all bolting for type, coating and condition
· Checking the valve nameplates are correct, with part numbers, serial numbers, pressure classes, temperature ranges, and serial numbers.
· Checking the valve markings are correct, ensuring that visible cast / heat Numbers are correct.
· Checking the conditions of paint when valves are painted, ensuring the paint colour is correct and that the condition of the paint is to the paint specification
Joshua stated; “I am used to working under pressure and under difficult circumstances, I was recently set a task of conducting the Final Inspecting of 124 Hi-Tek Valves with a time sensitive delivery. They had to be inspected and shipped on the same day, this task would usually take two days to complete, but with a concentrated effort, I excelled and managed to inspect all the Valves ensuring timely shipping for our Customer. I also have responsibility for the use of the Positive Material Identification (PMI) XRF Analyser. This piece of equipment analyses Materials by the use of X-Rays, resulting in the identification of Grades of Material.
Another responsibility that Joshua has is working in Goods-In and inspecting components that are used in the manufacture of all the valves at Alco. He also has a seat on the Alco Valves Group Health & Safety Committee, representing the QA/QC Department in all matters relating to Health & Safety. And finally, Joshua is also involved in the Project Management of a Valve Refurbishment Programme, ensuring that Valves to be refurbished are disassembled, inspected, measured and the required replacement parts are identified and mated to the specific Valve.
When asked his opinion about how he feels working for Alco, Joshua said; “Working in the QA department at Alco Valves has excelled my knowledge about working with quality. I have a desire to influence my work with a full eye for even the smallest details and to ensure that every product that leaves the door is to the highest quality product possible."
Michael West, Group Quality Manager Commented; “Joshua performs a pivotal role within the QA/QC Department at Alco Valves; he is a valued member of the Team. Joshua is commended for the professional attitude he takes for his responsibilities and in the way he performs all of his duties. Joshua's dedication to his role is unsurpassable, an example of which, Joshua completed a high amount of overtime in order to assist the Business and a Customer with the Despatch of a Valve, Joshua stayed well past his finish time to ensure the Valve was fit for purpose and operated as required to enable the Customer, who was on site at the time to take the Valve which was essential to the Customer Operations and the consequences of not achieving this delivery may have cost the Customer hundreds of thousands of pounds in lost time.”
Joshua Milthorpe is a dedicated member of our team with a key role in our quality process, and yet another example of just how important each member of the Alco team is to the running of the company. We would like to wish Joshua all the best in his career here at Alco Valves Group.