The team at Weatherbys Scientific perform a wide variety of roles, and every day at the lab is different. Come with us as we take you behind the scenes and hear first hand from some of our people in our new "meet the team" series. In this first instalment, get to know our Lab Operations Manager, Kate Minogue.
I joined the company in November 2021, and I already knew the company from prior experience working within the equine industry – from my time at the Irish Equine Centre. I knew it was the right company for me following my interview with the International Sales Director Romy, as Weatherbys Scientific is a very people-orientated company and places a lot of value in its staff.
Weatherbys Scientific has changed hugely since I joined two and a half years ago. Even my own role has changed in that time, as I initially started here as a Team Lead but have since taken on the responsibility of Lab Manager. When I first started, our team was at capacity in terms of workload – this proved to be challenging in a number of respects and we saw a higher staff turnover than what we would have liked. However, since then we have introduced cross-training to the business to allow staff to develop and grow. We have recruited in the right areas and are now at much better staffing numbers, so the workload can be shared a lot better. On a more personal side, we have introduced a social committee, to organise and host events as well as our famous staff race days.
My proudest achievement in my time here so far has been helping to build a good culture and atmosphere, aiding in raising staff energy and morale. The biggest win in all of this came with the introduction of the cross-training programmes, helping our staff achieve bonuses and improved packages. All in all, this has helped increase staff retention and brought a healthy, positive mood and culture around the business.
The most interesting projects I have worked on have all been to do with new testing that we continue to introduce, and continue to employ here. We are always at the forefront of new technology, and it feels great to be a part of building a better future with Weatherbys Scientific.
It is very different to your typical big pharma company. Weatherbys Scientific has almost of a family feel and culture to the business, especially in the lab. There is very much a culture of collaboration and co-operation where everybody knows each other and works together.
The very first thing I would advise is simply reaching out and letting people know that you are interested, whether that be through school, college, university, or relevant business. There are lots of opportunities out there to get involved and gain some real-life work experience in the field so you can begin to develop your skills and gain knowledge within the industry.
The main thing from a business standpoint would be that we are often misunderstood as solely an equine company, due to our long and storied history within the horseracing world. But what many people don’t know about us here at Weatherbys Scientific is that we deal with all sorts of animals such as cows and sheep and actually have a very strong positioning in the agricultural industry as a whole. As far as my own role, some people may not realise that as a Lab Manager, we work very closely with the sales teams and are involved in the business and sales side of things too, so it is a very varied role.