Ken Boonen – Mechanical Lead Engineer
Why did you join Canon Production Printing?
I joined right after university. I had the choice to work in a smaller company, but joined Canon because there would be more opportunities, and lots of different projects. It still feels like the right option!
The end product in R&D is documentation. But on the first day, when I arrived at the office, I saw all the desks covered with parts and pieces for testing and prototyping, and I thought: this is great, it’s hands-on working! I really thrive on that.
What do you do in your job?
I’m in a project that is responsible for mature machines. Even when a machine has been around some time, there are still new challenges every day, balancing both long-term machine improvements with maintenance topics such as product availability and troubleshooting. As a lead engineer, my responsibilities now include helping out other engineers with their daily challenges, working on planning reviews, and keeping the team running smoothly.
What was your first project?
My first big challenge was paper handling for the i300 high speed cutsheet printer: I had to design a unit to transport wet sheets of paper from A to B in the machine without scratches and prevent dogears. The challenge also included testing and prototyping, so I had to verify whatever I designed. Would it really work in practice?
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I like the flexibility! As a mechanical engineer, you have tasks and assignments to complete, but you’re free to plan your work throughout the week. Also, I’ve really found there’s no end to the learning. You can broaden your knowledge, and do a deep dive into technical issues. Every day holds something that you don’t know.
What advice would you give to someone joining Canon Production Printing?
Be proactive and ask for help when you need it. Don’t keep rowing on your own for hours or days – feel free to ask more experienced people. Start out like this, and you help to promote a culture where it is easy for others to ask for your help, also.