Based in the electronic-mechanical production (EMP) team at McLaren Applied, Andreea Suciu, Roxana Cercel and Daria Bielang specialise in the painstaking and precise hand assembly and testing of high performance sensor components, alternators and ignition coils.
The sensors Andreea, Roxana and Daria assemble are used in some of the world’s most prestigious motorsport series around the world, including Formula 1, NASCAR and IndyCar. The sensors are also used to improve people’s lives in industries as diverse as aerospace and public transport.
Andreea, 29, and Roxana 34, both secured a cleaning job with world-leading facility service provider, ISS, who keep the McLaren Technology Centre (MTC) in Woking in pristine condition.
Andreea said: “I was so excited when I found out I got the cleaning job as it was my opportunity to experience working at McLaren. The atmosphere among the cleaning team was great, and I had access to see some of the fascinating projects people worked on and how they worked.
“So when I saw the opportunity to become a trainee technician on our careers website, I jumped at the chance to further my professional development.
“We’re encouraged to take responsibility of our own career path. If you want to move roles or companies within McLaren, you can sit down with your line manager and discuss your plans, and he or she will support you to get there.”
Andreea goes on to recall her memorable first day as a trainee technician: “On my first day, Gavin, my line manager asked me to take the heat gun out, and I thought, firstly, what’s a heat gun, secondly, where is it?
“Going from using cleaning utensils to microscopes took some getting used to at the start! But over time, it has become second nature to me, and now I feel confident.”
Shortly after Andreea joined McLaren, her friend and colleague, Roxana also joined as a cleaner.
Roxana said: “It’s amazing that McLaren Applied has given us this life-changing opportunity in a technical role. It shows that they take the development of employees seriously and can trust them with important roles.
“I’ve not experienced any “them” and “us” between the ISS and McLaren employees. We all sit together in the restaurant so making the jump to work for McLaren felt like a natural leap given my ambitions in a culture I already knew and liked.
“I was terrified though naturally of making mistakes at the start because the components we make are critical for safety, so the responsibility for producing them is massive. However, the open culture here means you can be honest and admit when you have made a mistake. My line manager explains to me where I made the mistake, and how I can avoid the same mistake in the future so I can quickly improve”, she added.
Art graduate Daria, originally from Russia, joined the EMP team just over a year ago from Absolute Taste, who cater for the thousands of employees based at McLaren.
She said: “I’m so proud to wear the McLaren uniform.
“Every piece of solder is done with the same focus and attention to detail as the last, because I know that the McLaren standard is the highest you can get.
“I really value the learning opportunities we have. We often visit the other teams within the business to share knowledge, best practice and to learn more.”
Andreea, Roxana, Daria are keen to see even more women given the same opportunities they received.
Roxana said: “We would like to see even more women join McLaren Applied. Dr Caroline Hargrove, Technical Director, has set up monthly internal events for women across the McLaren Technology Group to network and to discuss our progress, which is fantastic.”
The decision in some cases to leave their families behind in their home countries is not an easy one. But Andreea, Roxana, Daria are incredibly driven to realise their dreams.
Andreea explains, “Of course it’s difficult being away from my family, but they are incredibly proud of what I have achieved.
“The management here made the relocation easier for me. They really care for me. If I don’t feel well, they insist I go home and rest until I feel ready to come in to work.”
McLaren’s ethos is that there are no limits to what we can achieve, and the same applies to its employees. The company presents its people with life-changing opportunities, and these three very talented and driven women, are grabbing every opportunity that comes their way.
To see a full list of job opportunities at McLaren Applied, click here.