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On November 3rd, the IChemE Global Awards will announce its 2020 Young Industrialist winner. Process Engineer Rhys Griffiths from our Birmingham Office is one of this year’s finalists.

Rhys progressed through our IChemE accredited NEXT Graduate programme. We caught up with him to hear more about some of the initiatives he is working on which have contributed to his nomination.

How has the PM Group NEXT Graduate Programme helped you in your career so far?

It has helped to develop my interpersonal skills outside of project work, for example on topics such as leadership and communication. The programme has also helped me in understanding more about the company as a whole and the roles of my colleagues in other departments.

What has been your biggest challenge to date in PM Group?

Within the first three months of joining PM Group I began a secondment as a commissioning engineer on a major biopharmaceutical manufacturing facility. I had little knowledge of the industry or the equipment I would be commissioning, so it proved to be a steep learning curve. The practical experience I gained was invaluable in bridging the gap between university and building a solid foundation within the pharmaceutical industry.

What do you enjoy most about your role?

The variety that I have experienced from working on different projects. No two projects are the same for many reasons. Whether it is the stage that the project is at, the client’s requirements or the technology that is used. It keeps work interesting and provides great opportunities for learning and development.

What kind of innovations have you been involved with?

Standard Disposable Design (SDD™) is a biopharmaceutical industry initiative to standardise the design of single-use components and assemblies. I am now the project manager for the initiative, coordinating discussions between our subject matter experts, pharmaceutical manufacturers and suppliers of single-use technology. My involvement with SDD™ has led to work on a new innovation, the Single-Use Design Tool™. This unique new service helps manufacturers to visualise their single-use processes, allowing them to make strategic decisions on component selection and standardisation.

What objectives in industry are you currently focused on trying to achieve?

Our goal is to facilitate the standardisation of disposable designs between biopharmaceutical companies, which are available from a network of different suppliers. By establishing such industry-wide standards, we can see a benefit to the whole industry with a simplified supply chain. Therefore, driving down warehouse requirements and leading to a reduction in capital expenditure for new facilities.


Read more about the IChemE Global Awards.

Find out about SDD™.