ReturnInterview with Sara Boureta, manufacturing administrator
Montana Air boasts the experience and prestige of 18 years working in the sector. During this time, apart from establishing our own aerosol paint brand as a world benchmark, Montana Air offers manufacturer services to other brands, helping them increase their share of their respective markets. Montana Air provides a "Full Service": developing the formulation, manufacturing, carrying out logistics and managing purchases for private labels (third-party products). The complexity of managing multiple providers isn’t an easy task, made even more challenging when you consider tight delivery times, a condition that requires a high level of efficiency to offer excellent service.
As part of the Montana Air team, Sara Boureta has got to know the internal processes prior to the manufacture of a product inside out as a manufacturing administrator over the last 7 years.
The fluctuation in the markets and the sporadic limitations of stock and certain products surely require agility in management, imagination and perhaps sometimes having to make risky decisions: is this correct?
Right. The company increasingly tends to have less stock in the warehouse due to space limitations. This means having a very flexible and agile department, since at certain times delicate decisions must be made, which may not be to your liking but which must be done to satisfy the client.
These decisions are agreed with other departments such as Supply Chain, who are responsible for planning production.
Resins, pigments, packaging products and gas: it’s a market that is relies on diverse sources. Can you tell us a little bit about which countries these products come from?
We receive materials from different sources, like the gases which come from Holland (DME and BP). We also work with other local suppliers that provide us with plastic components such as caps, donuts, and so on. I believe that diversity in suppliers makes us more competitive and work with less risk.
What difficulties and progression have you noticed during your career at Montana Air in relation to international movement and importation of the materials necessary for manufacturing?
As for progress, Montana Air has evolved a lot in recent years, especially with regard to the automation of many production processes. Progression has been, and should continue to be, very consistent.
These changes have fully affected the management of the production department; but I always say that with effort and commitment, anything can be achieved.
It seems that foresight and anticipation is key in your work: do you sometimes feel an obsession with meeting deadlines?
Yes, as I have mentioned before, it is very important to anticipate and work quickly to achieve the delivery times planned by the Supply Chain department.
It’s true that you feel often feel tied because we always try to seek good plant efficiency while meeting deadlines, and this sometimes forces you to prioritize, delaying other deliveries that aren’t as urgent.
Management software and the automation of secure computer processes are an indispensable part of your work: how have you experienced progress and innovation in this regard over the last two decades?
Software is key and has to be linked to the automation process. I have worked closely with this process, and although the beginnings weren’t easy, it now seems unthinkable to work without the software, since it facilitates and speeds up all processes.
A position like the one you occupy within the company probably requires continuous training to be up to date with everything you need for proper management. How do you find the endless continual updates of knowledge?
It’s natural to me. In the 21st century, continuous training is essential to keeping up to date and not be left behind.
What is the first thing you thought when you were hired twenty years ago?
I knew about the company because I lived very close by and I had some friends who worked there, so when they hired me I was delighted. I was very excited to see the process of packaging the spray paint: who’s never wondered how an aerosol is made?
What do you think about the evolution of the company in the last two decades?
The evolution of the company in recent years has been spectacular. We have gone from manufacturing sprays using a very manual process to making them in a more automated way, the number of units produced per day has practically quadrupled.
As for paint, we have gone from having to buy it to manufacturing it internally. The work of the R&D department, which provide continuous innovations, have increased the product range each year.
Distribution has also grown a lot, with Montana products reaching all four corners of the world.
Do you think that this evolution has gone hand in hand with an evolution of the environment?
Yes. You just need to take a tour of any town or city, the walls are full of art and color. The first graffitis were illegible tags, which I’m not saying were bad, but today there are pieces on the walls that are true works of art.
I also believe that the PRO range has opened up a more professional market that has made Montana products reach a wider audience, not just for graffiti writers or artists.
What is the secret to growing in a job for so long without being stagnant?
The job has evolved little by little and this means you don’t feel stuck. Each day is always different from the previous one.
What fills you the most about working for Montana Colors?
I love working for a company that I share values and a way of life with. I feel like we have grown together.
We know that work, like life, doesn’t have only good things and it is important to analyze the negative ones in order to learn, improve and value more the positive ones. What was the time when you have struggled the most at work?
In almost 20 years there has been time for everything, one of the most complicated times was when I started as a manufacturing administrator. The first few years were very hard, with a lot of pressure on the department, but thanks to the effort and perseverance of my boss Eudald, I managed to feel very comfortable in my job.
Tell us the strangest, the most fun or surprising thing that you have experienced in your career in Montana Colors.
One of the stories that I remember the most was a can that wasn’t filled properly that squirted out and painted by colleagues face completely blue! I can still see her colored face with the only clean area left by her lab glasses.
Do you have any link with the brand or its products outside of work?
Yes, I am a big fan of "handmade", so I make and decorate lots of things. I like to use the most are inks and varnishes, it’s more than just a hobby for me.
What do you think is essential for a work team to achieve its objectives and maintain the motivation?
I believe that communication and teamwork are essential. It’s also very important to be clear about your objectives, to be consistent and ambitious.
What is your motto as a professional?
Commitment and quality.ShareSeptember 30, 2020