‘Engineering, especially the medical device sector, is a diverse field’

Eoin O’Donoghue, a Senior CAD Engineer at Wytris, discusses his role and working in the medical device sector.

Eoin O’Donoghue is a Senior Computer Aided Design (CAD) Engineer working with the Global Device Development Group at global healthcare company Viatris in the Device Design and Industrialization (DDI) team.

Prior to joining Wytris, O’Donoghue worked in the medical device sector as an R&D engineer. In his current role, he primarily works on CAD activities to assist in the development of various assembly product projects.

‘Working as part of a team to produce a finished product that can make a positive impact on a patient’s quality of life is the most satisfying part of working as an engineer’
– Eoin O’Donoghue

If so, can you describe a typical day on the job?

My day usually starts with an email or MS team review to catch up on any new communication. This is usually followed by what we call a ‘daily project huddle’. This is where the team plans tasks for the day ahead and I find them particularly useful as it is an opportunity for anyone on the team to request or provide assistance where needed. Ultimately this helps ensure a balanced workload.

The rest of my day usually consists of working through CAD-specific project tasks and attending team meetings to discuss technical topics in greater detail where necessary.

What type of engineering projects do you work on?

The DDI team works cross-functionally on various assembly product projects, with key roles in concept development, device design feasibility and injection molding tool design. This is especially enjoyable, as I can contribute to the design of a product from concept to manufacture.

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What engineering skills do you use on a daily basis?

3D modeling and 2D drawing are the main skills I use daily. Effective communication skills are an important complement to these core skills. Taking into account input from stakeholders from various functional lines within the group is critical in translating patient needs and requirements to CAD models and ultimately to finished products.

What are the toughest parts of engineering, and how do you navigate them?

Changing deadlines and priorities at the group level and within individual projects can be challenging. These can be navigated using available tools, such as team huddles and planner boards, to communicate the need to reprioritize and ensure that sufficient resources are in place to meet important milestones.

Do you have any productivity tips that help you through the day?

As much as possible, I try to set fixed times for each task I’m working on and periodically check progress against expectations. I find this helps me stay focused and how project work is organized in MS Planner and through daily meetings. It can also help in building confidence in estimating the time required for similar activities in future.

What skills and tools are you using to communicate with your co-workers on a daily basis?

We use Microsoft Teams and Planner to communicate in Viatris. MS Teams facilitates engagement and interaction especially for meetings where teams are split across multiple sites. MS planner is used to assign different tasks for each project. It is useful because it provides a platform for collaboration and tracking of work in a concise manner outside of weekly project or functional group meetings.

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How has this role changed as the engineering field has grown and developed?

This role has evolved with a focus on developing robust CAD data and CAD management systems. Maintaining CAD data that can be quickly and easily modified by design engineers is essential when working around rapidly changing design ideas, especially during early stage device development and implementing changes to existing products. Strong CAD management is critical in maintaining the traceability of products from concept development to commercial devices.

What do you enjoy most about working as an engineer?

Working as part of a team to produce a finished product that can make a positive impact on a patient’s quality of life is one of the most satisfying parts of working as an engineer. At Vyatris you have the opportunity to work with a team of engineers and scientists with diverse skills. This has helped me appreciate what is needed to empower people around the world to stay healthy at every stage of life and address patient needs while designing combination products.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to work in engineering?

I would encourage anyone who wants to work in engineering to always be ready to learn new skills and adapt to changing situations. Engineering, especially the medical device sector itself, is a diverse field and there are always opportunities to advance or specialize in a given area.

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