Ben Hart

Ben Hart

University of Melbourne
Product Manager
Ben studied Master of Chemical Engineering at University of Melbourne

Working in the Life Sciences division of Ixom my role primarily sources raw materials to be used in the manufacture of food and nutritional products.

A typical day for me sees me building strong relationships with manufacturers, suppliers and our customers gathering product and market information from both overseas and locally, researching new suppliers and manufacturers, as well as ordering materials. It’s important for me to stay aware of the progress of any current contracts we have with customers and make sure that we are catering to existing business as well as searching for new opportunities.

My current role on the graduate program allows me to use many different skills and could be done by someone without an engineering degree, whereas my previous role definitely required an engineering degree. I think it’s more important to be able to think on your feet and solve problems as quickly as possible which requires a willingness to communicate and constantly learn how to do things more efficiently.

One of the hardest parts of the job is trying to control a range of different factors, some of which are completely out of your control. This includes things like overseas political situations, overseas holidays, weather, and even natural disasters. Despite these, customers still need the product so we need to get it to them!

My advice: Study hard but make sure you have passions outside of uni. Get experience in as many areas as you can (work and personal). Take it seriously, but not too seriously, enjoy it!