Meet the Team – Josh Morris

Meet the Team: Josh Morris

1. Describe your job as if you were explaining it to a five-year-old?

I work on machines to get them to a point where they’re running well and making the products they are supposed to be making. I also find all the little problems with them and make them run better than they were the day before.

2. What types of projects are you working on at the moment?

At the moment, the big project I’m on is bringing in new manufacturing lines to one of our large clients. I just returned from Japan where I was testing the new machines before they are brought to Ireland. We’re going to be doing the installation of those brand-new machines here.

3. What was it like in Japan?

I was in Japan for a month. Obviously getting to work over there was one thing, but we had the evenings and weekends to ourselves. We were able to go off and experience the culture and try all the food, for better or worse, I suppose. Believe it or not, Italian food in Japan is top class. We did all the usual touristy stuff; it was an excellent experience.

4. How did you get into the industry?

Well, I’ve always been into computers and electronics, anything technology related, ever since I was a kid – I was typing on keyboards since I was two. When I was doing my application for college, it’s recommended you list multiple options, but I only put down two as I knew I wanted to do Electronic and Computer engineering at the University of Limerick.

I did the four years of Electronic and Computer engineering. When we started doing more automation and robotic stuff, that’s when I really kind of came into my own and I absolutely loved every module I was working on.

I then saw the Mechatronics Masters in UL and applied for that. Honestly, it was the best thing I ever did. I loved every second of the course. I found it really fitted in with what I wanted to do and what I enjoyed. It was there that I met two SL Controls employees who were teaching the course. I was able to ask them questions about what they did, and it sounded like something I would really enjoy doing. One of them then referred me for the job at SL Controls.

5. What is your proudest moment (work life or personal life)?

Probably completing the Masters. Before starting it, I didn’t really feel like continuing in university or didn’t think I would like it or get on particularly well.  I decided to give it a go and ended up really enjoying it, it came easy to me as I was very interested in the topics we were learning. That achievement of actually putting my mind to something that I really enjoy doing and being able to work on that and see it through to the end made me proud of the achievement. White water kayaking through the Alps is a close second though.

6. What’s the best advice you could give to someone thinking of coming into this industry?

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. I get a lot of messages on LinkedIn from people that are thinking about doing the Mechatronics course in Limerick. They see that I’ve done it, so they ask my thoughts and about my experience. Like that, no one’s ever afraid to answer your questions in this industry.

Also, don’t be afraid to get stuck in and try to figure something out. Whoever you’re working with will always appreciate the fact that you tried. You can always ask them a question and there’s never been any pushback or I’m too busy. For me, it’s always been I’ll drop what I’m doing now, and I’ll come to help you or we’ll figure it out together.

It’s a constant learning experience, but there are hundreds of people around you that are more than happy to answer any questions you have, whether you know them or have just met them.

7. Outside of work, what are you most passionate about?

I love space, so I watch all the documentaries and I do astrophotography – taking pictures of the moon, planets, and galaxies. I apply to every astronaut programme that comes up, ever, just because you never know when your time might come.

I love watching movies, I do clay pigeon shooting, and I’m a level four white-water kayaker. I’ve been kayaking in the French, Italian, and Slovenian Alps a few times.

8. What’s the best thing about working for life sciences customers (pharma, MedTech, etc)?

Every day is something different. You always come in and, while you know what you’re working on, you don’t know what the problem of the day will be. Something that was working yesterday might not be working today and you have to figure it out. I love troubleshooting – it’s probably my favourite part of the job. I just love investigating and trying to figure out what makes it tick or why isn’t it working.

Working in the life science industry, especially when we’re putting in new lines or working on new projects, nothing is established. So, you always have to dig a little deeper to find out why something is not operating the way you want it to. Even when you’re working on similar projects, if you move from one to another, you might think, all the problems will be the same on this one, but they end up being all completely different as well. So, it’s always something new, exciting!

9. What is the best thing about being on the SL Controls team?

Everyone is so friendly and helpful, and I can reach out to anyone with any questions I have. I could text someone that I have never spoken to before and I could ask them a question and they are always happy to respond.

When I was preparing for Japan, someone told one of the SL Controls employees who works in Florida that I was going. He actually reached out to me asking if I had any questions. I had never talked to the fella before in my life. So, everyone’s there to help you and make you feel part of the team.