Audience Opinion Piece

Speaker Interview: Trent Randles

Hey Trent, great to meet you! Could you introduce yourself by telling us a bit about yourself, your role and experience?

I began my journey in the automotive industry as a mechanic at a Ford Dealership. Later, I transitioned into the engineering field of automotive manufacturing at Plastic Omnium, where I held various roles, including Assembly Engineer for both the Operations Team and the Design Team, as well as Project Engineer on the Launch Team.

Subsequently, I stepped into a leadership position at Magna Seating, serving as the Production System Manager. In this role, I led a Continuous Improvement Team, focusing on enhancing processes and driving efficiency.

My tenure at BorgWarner, Inc. commenced as the Manufacturing Engineering Manager. Over time, my responsibilities expanded after taking the role of Engineering & Operational Excellence Manager. Currently, I oversee multiple departments, including Manufacturing Engineering, Industrial Engineering, Packaging, Continuous Improvement, Training, and Academic Engagement.

In my current capacity, my overarching goal is to develop and implement strategic plans aligned with the company’s vision and operational objectives. I achieve this through continuous improvement initiatives, innovative collaborations, and leveraging technology advancements.

What initially drew you to participate in the MX.0 Southeast event?

What initially drew me to participate in the MX.0 Southeast event was networking opportunities and the opportunity to help others as it relates to operational efficiency and sustainability through digital transformation. MX.0 Southeast brings together professionals from diverse backgrounds - industry, academia and other organizations fostering valuable relationships and collaborations. Moreover, this conference goes beyond theory, offering practical examples and lessons learned related to digital transformation by individuals such as myself sharing their experiences - both successes and failures. I feel these insights empower me and hopefully others to drive operational efficiency and sustainability within their own organizations.

What role were you in, and what lessons were you looking for?

I participated in the keynote discussion panel – Nobody likes change: How to lead people through digital transformation? Although I was a participant in the event, my primary focus was on understanding essential lessons-learned related to achieving alignment among stakeholders who influence the decision-making process and identifying when digital transformation would be beneficial to process improvement and when it wouldn’t be.  

Trent Randles, Engineering Manager - T-Case Assembly & Operational Excellence, Drivetrain & Battery Systems, BorgWarner

Trent Randles has worked for Automotive Tier-1 suppliers for the last 10 years including Plastic Omnium, Magna Seating and BorgWarner. Holding various engineering positions in operations, design, program launch and engineering leadership has given him a unique perspective of the manufacturing industry. Throughout his career he’s led multiple digital transformation initiatives involving Digital Twins, Augmented Reality, and Cyber-Physical Production Systems.In his current role as Manufacturing Engineering Manager at BorgWarner, he continues to promote digital technology advancement through educating others, coaching his team, and developing key partnerships.Trent holds a bachelor’s degree in Engineering Technology Management from University of South Carolina – Upstate and a master’s degree in Industrial Engineering from Clemson University. He is passionate about advancing technology in manufacturing, learning from others in this area and being a mentor to those seeking knowledge about it.