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Dr Mark Williams

Dr Mark Williams is a Principal Research Fellow at WMG and Project Manager of the Craftsmanship project. Craftsmanship is all about attention to detail, from the fit and finish of components to the click of a switch or the smell of leather. This holistic view towards perceived quality is Craftsmanship’s focus as part of the Premium Automotive Research and Development (PARD) programme. A major part of Dr Williams’ research is the development of techniques that will help companies turn imprecise expressions of customer preference into quantifiable measurements and techniques that will allow engineers to recreate the experience customers desire. Results from this research are being used to help develop innovative new methods for incorporating the ‘Voice of the customer’ directly into the development process; a key factor of new product success. One key area of focus is on ‘user controls’ where the latest research shows that simple things such as the push of a button have a disproportionately large impact on the choices customers make when buying new goods. This work has become the foundation of a WIMRC funded research project into the Human Machine Interface (HMI) for Intelligent Vehicles, in which he is Principal Investigator. Dr Williams is also working with a range of companies, including TATA Motors Limited and TVS motors, implementing dimensional management strategy through the use of the latest perceived quality measurement techniques. Through collaboration with Metris Limited, this work has led to the procurement of a world-class computer controlled Co-ordinate Measurement Machine (CMM) facility capable of measuring complete vehicles to within microns. This work also extends to the use of physical design verification models and prototypes to complement WMG’s drive towards virtual product development. He is also actively involved in the supervision of doctoral research projects, full and part-time masters students internationally in New Product Introduction, Supply Chain Management and Health care technologies. In 1986 Dr Williams started his career as a technician apprentice with GEC Turbine Generators and went on to study Mechanical Engineering at Nottingham. After graduating, he studied for a Masters degree in Advanced Manufacturing Technology at the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST) before going on to complete a PhD in 1998 in New Product Introduction and Business Process Re-engineering. He then moved back into industry to work at Jaguar and Land Rover as a Dimensional and Variation Management specialist before moving to WMG in 2003. This resulted in qualification as a Chartered Engineer before being elected as a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (FIMechE) in 2007.