Grand Designs in Manufacturing
As Senior Designer at G Plan, Paul Dack is responsible for designing G Plan sofas for homes throughout the country, but reveals his role goes far beyond the initial sketches.
Paul is responsible for both the G Plan core and G Plan Vintage ranges, and each requires a different combination of skills. Through his designs for the core collection, Paul is tasked with delivering the ultimate in comfort and longevity, proven by G Plan’s ten year frame and spring guarantee. The Vintage range requires him to tap into a different mindset, which enables him to blend timeless details with a contemporary approach.
“There are many different facets to my role. From creating the initial brief to looking at current market trends and designs, there is a lot of work involved before even coming up with a sketch of the product.
“Once I reach the sketch stage, the design is then modelled and rendered and discussions are held with the design and development team who create a prototype. From design to launch, it can take up to a year for a product to be completed.”
Paul believes the manufacturing industry is an exciting place to work and urges young people to explore the opportunities within the sector.
“Manufacturing in the UK is continuing to grow and it is an exciting industry to work in at the moment. There is a wide variety of career paths on offer within the sector and this is something which needs to be promoted to those at the very start of their careers.
“There is probably a misperception about the industry in the UK and few people realise that manufacturing is growing, which is understandable, as they see many products being produced abroad.”
Follow your passion
When it comes to choosing a potential career, Paul says people should follow their heart and do what they enjoy – as he did.
“I didn’t think about a career in design until my second year of college, when my teacher said I had a flair for product design. I pursued this and luckily enough, it worked out very well.
“For those who want to become designers in the manufacturing industry, I believe you have to enjoy problem solving and really have a passion for the products themselves. My favourite parts of the job are the problem solving and engineering aspects as well as exploring current trends within the market.
“Obviously having the ability to draw and visually express your ideas is important, but being able to talk to people is also vital, as you can often find yourself out and about: sourcing new products, visiting factories and attending tradeshows and design events.”
“If you enjoy design and have a natural talent, work hard at it and you’ll find that you’re not only successful, but will also look forward to going to work every day.”