Staff focus: Donna Pudsey

At Cepac we're incredibly proud of our people. This is one in a series of staff focus articles where we shine a light on the many faces who make up our team.

Donna, Quality Systems Manager at Rotherham, discusses quality and achievements, as well as highlighting the importance of the lab.

Portrait of Donna Pudsey


What is your role at Cepac?

I joined Cepac in March 2000 shortly after first production in November 1999. Although I had anticipated a role in Sales it was considered that I would be better suited to the laboratory. I have never looked back since.

Despite my lack of laboratory experience I quickly took to the development of testing procedures and enjoyed ‘road testing’ new products and materials. Such an emphasis upon testing was not common within our industry and it took many of our paper suppliers by surprise. Although there were quality complaints at the outset these soon reduced as they realised that we were regularly testing. We were quickly able to stabilise production quality standards, to monitor performance trends and to build a data history.


Can you describe your typical day?

We have a regular routine in Rotherham which starts with our Management Meeting. I prefer to update my records  first thing as everyone is fighting to update their own sections before 9am.

Quality and service is of paramount importance. There is always pressure upon productivity although this must never compromise our quality standards. We measure rejections as parts per million and take great pride that our record is one of the best in the UK.

We regularly run new developments and trials and it is my responsibility to oversee progress and report results. I have been in the job so long that I am usually able to pick up any problems or variations pretty quickly.


Have there been any significant changes at Cepac?

Covid-19 meant major changes and we have ensured safe standards of working throughout. From my point of view the introduction of Microsoft Teams has made a major difference. Management meetings are held remotely which involves a different technique in terms of participation and the practical demands of sharing documents. This was difficult at first although I have now had plenty of practice.


Have there been any stand-out events?

In March 2021 we achieved AA status for BRCGS against the latest standard (Issue 6) without any non-conformances. This was the outcome of a tremendous effort by our entire team, from sales and design, through production, quality and finally into despatch. We worked together closely to safeguard quality and service standards including product safety. Product Safety has become more topical in recent years. We have also just had our fist unannounced BRCGS audit we again passed without any non-conformances. This means we now have the highest grade available of ‘AA+’.


Donna using laboratory equipment


Is there anything which gives you most pride?

Since I commenced with Cepac we have pioneered Performance Packaging. We apply science and measurement to our choice of materials and the control of our process. Our process is dynamic with constant development to reflect changing customer requirements and raw materials. Throughout it all we measure everything that we do.

Our laboratory is central to everything that we do at Cepac. Last year we organised its complete renewal including full refurbishment, redecoration and a new floor. Although we have always maintained high standards this is a decided improvement. It now looks pretty impressive and is much more clinical and professional. At the heart we have incorporated our Cepac logo as a feature in the design lab.

The laboratory floor at Rotherham



Hear more from our people, check out our staff focus roundup.

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